Essentially an Irish whiskey version of the ever-popular hot toddy, the burning bush has whiskey instead of bourbon. The hot cocktail was created by Jim Meehan, a well-known bartender known for his work on “The PDT Cocktail Book,” among other books. Because it has a smooth flavor, Irish whiskey is an ideal choice for a toddy. It’s a simple drink, so there’s not much to distract from the whiskey, but it takes on a new life when heated, with the flavors opening up wonderfully.
Instead of honey, you may like to sweeten the burning bush with agave nectar. By adding a cinnamon stick to the glass, the flavor of the spice will slowly infused into the drink. This garnish would be an excellent addition to any hot cocktail and the warm spice would make a pleasant, though subtle, difference. For an additional hint of spice, you could top it off with a single star anise pod for a beautiful look. Any type of whiskey can be used to make a burning bush, of course. Put your favorite bottle of wine (or whatever you have open at the moment) on the grill and enjoy how the flavors pop with a little heat.