Jameson Whiskey and Q Ginger Ale


There’s no question that whiskey and ginger ale belong together.  Jack and Ginger is a legend, and the Horse’s Neck cocktail blends bourbon and ginger ale, with a lemon peel deftly carved into the shape of an equine neck.

I mixed several combinations of whiskies and ginger ales, and the combination of Jameson Irish Whiskey with Q Ginger Ale from Brooklyn proved much more delicious than the rest.

The comparisons are below, but first, the best:

Jameson and Q Ginger Ale Recipe

  • 1½ ounces Jameson Irish Whiskey
  • 3½ ounces Q Ginger Ale
  • ¼ of a wheel of Ruby Red grapefruit, for garnish and flavor.

— Fill a highball glass with ice. Pour in the whiskey. Gently pour in the Q Ginger Ale.  Squeeze about 7 drops of juice from the grapefruit slice into the cocktail, and drop the grapefruit slice into the drink for garnish.

Notes: The Jameson Distillery sometimes serves the whiskey with a grapefruit twist to visitors, which is where the idea came from.

For an interesting variation, replace the grapefruit with a small lime wedge. Squeeze the lime into the drink, drop it in for garnish, and add 3 drops of Angostura bitters to the drink.

Kudos to Michelle Draguesku of Q Tonic, for the idea to mix it with Jameson.

The Whiskey and Ginger Test

Whiskeys:  Jameson’s Irish, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee, and Buffalo Trace Kentucky Bourbon.

Ginger Ales 

  • White Rock, a simple low-priced full-body ginger ale that’s made with sugar, not corn syrup.
  • Q Ginger Ale, which has a sharper ginger flavor, spices, and an astringent taste.
  • Fever-Tree, which has a very sharp taste of ginger and spices.

Mixed with Bourbon

  • White Rock mixes well with bourbon, as expected.
  • Q Ginger tastes astringent, and edges out the bourbon taste.
  • Fever-Tree completely overwhelms the bourbon.

Mixed with Jack Daniel’s

  • White Rock brings out the charcoal taste in Jack, but it’s a good thing, better than the bourbon mix.
  • Q Ginger creates a bizarre clash of tastes with Jack, but for some reason, I’ll drink it again.
  • Fever-Tree overwhelms the Jack, and adding more whiskey didn’t help.

Mixed with Jameson

  • White Rock and Jameson is just plain boring.
  • Q and Jameson complement each other perfectly. This is the most refreshing whiskey drink that’s crossed my palate.
  • Fever-Tree completely overwhelmed Jameson.  Fever-Tree makes the best tonic for gin, but their ginger ale is too strong for whiskey.

Q Ginger Ale is available at high-end groceries in the U.S.A.