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How to drink Ballantine’s blended and single malt scotch whisky

ballantines finest cola mixer

To put it bluntly, there’s no wrong way to drink Ballantine’s whisky. Our expertly blended and single malt scotch is meant to be enjoyed whichever way you want, whether on its own, in a cocktail or with your favourite mixer.

As our master blender, Sandy Hislop says…




In need of some inspiration? If you’re after a bit of guidance then read on. Here we share how to drink Ballantine’s whisky, your way.

What goes best with Ballantine’s?

ballantines glasses neat on the rocks whisky guide

Ballantine’s whisky is sourced from all corners of Scotland and aged in oak casks for at least three years. That’s what makes it a true Scotch and gives our bottles a beautifully rich flavour and colour. 

We have a few different whiskies here at Ballantine’s. And your chosen one might change how you prefer to drink it. Here’s our suggestions on how best to drink the Ballantine’s most popular bottles:

Ballantine’s Finest

Our signature distinctly shaped bottle has stayed true to its original recipe since 1910, winning it the title of world’s best blended scotch 2020. It’s soft, heather honey aroma is balanced by sweet flavours of red apple, vanilla and chocolate, finished by a hint of spice. 

Ballantine’s Finest goes best with almost any flavour. From fruity mixers to sour highballs, spiced drinks to dessert inspired digestifs – if it works for you, it works. 

We love to use it as the base for some of our most creative whisky cocktails. Fan of a whisky sour? Check out our Eastern twist on this classic cocktail made with the lychee fruit. Or switch out an Espresso Martini for the coolest caffeinated drink in town, the cream soda and whisky based Scots Coffee.

Check out more ways to drink Ballantine’s Finest below.

Ballantine's Finest Lychee Sour Drink

Lychee Sour

Fruity, zesty and takes less than 2 minutes to pour out a round. Shake up this eastern delight for some extra host points at your next party.

ballantines finest sunny scotland

Sunny Scotland

Sweet, refreshing, and creamy. This whisky sour just got a summer twist. The perfect drink for a sunny day in Bonnie Scotland.


Ballantine’s 12 Year Old

Ballantine’s 12 Year Old is a whisky close to our heart. Crafted by our very own master blender (who tried a fair few samples before selecting the recipe), this bottle was made with a passion for whisky, for those with a passion for whisky.  

The honey-sweet scotch offers refreshing floral notes and a creamy oakiness that makes it perfect to drink alone or with ingredients that elevate its complex flavours. We enjoy it in a classic whisky cocktail. Pair with honey and ginger in a fiery Penicillin or make yourself a scotch Manhattan with a Rob Roy.

Atholl Brose - Scotch Whisky Cocktail Recipe

Atholl Brose

This Scottish classic is oats-so-simple. Whip this up after a dinner party to really up your hosting game.


Ballantine’s 17 Year Old

The golden amber hues of Ballantine’s 17 Year Old whisky is matched with a deep, rich flavour gained from longer maturation. Think vibrant honey sweetness with a hint of liquorice, velvety full fruits and creamy vanilla. It’s slightly smoky, slightly spicy and very easy to drink. 

Pour yourself a dram and sip with a sense of occasion. Or mix it your way with your favourite flavours. We like it fruity in the Guadalupe, a lemon and charred pineapple cocktail that whisks you away to palm fringed shores. Or highlight the bold richness of 17 Year Old in a Sazerac style serve that’s seriously smoky.

Ballantine’s 21 Year Old

For an intense and rich serve, try Ballantine’s 21 Year Old whisky. This indulgent scotch has a smooth balanced taste of aromatic spice, apple and mellow dried fruit. It’s special enough to save, but also worthy of a sip just because. 

When not drunk on the rocks or with a splash of water, we enjoy this blend in some of our more delicate cocktail recipes such as White Orchid, a vanilla whisky drink that celebrates 21 Year Old’s natural notes of apple and liquorice. Or try Eastern Promise, a fragrant citrus mix of lime, orange and marzipan, accompanied by coffee bitters.

ballantines 17 year old Prestige

Sazerac Twist

Ballantine’s 17 Year Old has both a richness and complex spicy notes, so naturally works fantastically well in a Sazerac-style serve.

ballantines 21 year old white orchid drink

White Orchid

This vanilla pairing combines with the natural notes of apple and liquorice present in Ballantine’s 23 Year Old whisky, adding layers of complexity.


Ballantine’s 30 Year Old

Moved house? Got married? Ballantine’s 30 Year Old whisky is best enjoyed as a reward for something truly memorable. Or not, because everyday can be an occasion. 

The powerful, deep blend of this award-winning scotch is one to savour, crafted from the flavours of incredibly rare whiskies aged 30 years and over. Discover notes of juicy pear and peach, floral honey and vanilla oakiness. We love to drink it on the rocks with a simple cube of ice, or paired with delicate fruits and honey and in an elegant sweet whisky cocktail.

ballantines 30 year old on the rocks drink

Whisky on the Rocks

As the pinnacle in the Ballantine’s range, the 30 year old has been garnished with a simple cube of ice, in order to accentuate its natural depth and layers.

Ballantine's 30 Year Old Sweet Vestige Drink

Sweet Vestige

With notes of fig and honey, Sweet Vestige is an aromatic cocktail that delights the senses.


What are the best mixers for Ballantine’s whisky?

If you fancy a tipple that’s easy to make and easy to drink, then a whisky mixer is a great way to enjoy Ballantine’s. Some of the best mixers are the most simple ones, think classic combos such as a whisky cola, a whisky ginger ale or a whisky tonic.

But the versatile nature of Ballantine’s means that you can pair it with any juice, soda or soft drink that takes your fancy from coconut water to iced tea. Take a look at our guide to whisky mixers to get inspired. 

Whisky Grapefruit Cocktail - Scotch Recipe

Whisky & Grapefruit

One sip of this, and you’ll be seeing a lot more of Grapefruit in your cocktail rotation, we promise.

Ballantine's Whisky and Sprite - Lemon soda cocktail

Whisky & Sprite

Sweet, long and refreshing, Ballantine’s & Lemon Soda sounds like the perfect weekend in a glass and tastes like Saturday night just started.

Scotch and Soda Drink - Cocktail Recipe

Scotch & Soda

The king of classics, it doesn’t get better or simpler, than a Ballantine’s Scotch & Soda.


Ready to mix up your Ballantine’s? Find more ways to drink your favourite whisky with our library of whisky cocktails. You’ll find everything from classic whisky drinks to dessert cocktails and sweet and sour recipes.

Ballantine's Finest Spiced Julep Drink

17 light and refreshing whisky cocktails to drink this summer

Here are our favourite light whisky cocktails to keep you cool this summer season. Discover 17 refreshing recipes made with sweet, smooth scotch whisky.

types of whisky glasses

The best whisky glasses to drink your scotch in

Once you’ve chosen your whisky you need to decide how to drink it. Neat or mixer? Ice or cocktail? There’s a ton of options but no matter how you serve whisky, there’s always a scotch glass for the job. You don’t need to follow these points to the letter – good whisky doesn’t need rules – but it’s always useful to know the ropes when it comes to the different types of whisky glasses.

ballantines finest scotch whisky blog news page


You already know we’ve nailed the Finest Whisky to ever grace a glass. But that’s just a little drop of what we’re about. Scroll on for the latest news and features from across the world of Ballantine’s whisky, True Music and much, much more.