My friends have the most lovely habit of picking up jars of whiskey-soaked things for me to eat. The latest was a jar of bourbon peaches and a jar of bourbon-vanilla cherries. These happen to be two of my favorite fruits anyway, so the only thing that can top them is adding whiskey.While nobody is getting drunk off these, bourbon is a nice touch when it comes to fruit.
Jars of peaches takes me right back to my grandparents’ pantry, where a line of jarred peaches was always sitting ready for me to grab a fork. I can guarantee my grandpa would have eaten more of them if whiskey had been added to the mix.
I fished out a peach half from the jar and tried it. Yummy, but not what I was expecting. If bourbon is one-half of the ingredients listed on the jar, I expect it to be one-half of the taste inside the jar. Instead, the liquid was light and sweet, and the peaches had a faint hint of bourbon. Having soaked fruit in straight alcohol, I know it can be too extreme – an alcohol bomb that overpowers any sense of fruit. This was probably too far the other way for me – a really nice tasting peach, but not much of a bourbon tasting peach. To get that, I would probably just pour some bourbon over the top. Actually, that sounds like exactly what I will do with these peaches.
The Pioneer Cannery Bourbon-Vanilla Cherries were similar to the peaches in bourbon strength. Bourbon, vanilla, and cherries are three of my favorite flavors, though, so I almost forgive it not being super-bourbony. I will most likely drop these in a cocktail anyway, so I can take care of the bourbon flavor. I can also praise these cherries for being real cherries – none of that fake maraschino nonsense. And it’s local – here in Brooklyn – so I feel like that counts for something. The syrup is also damn tasty. I will be finding a way to use that (may involve just drinking it).
Update: I used some of each of these in a pie. Together. With other boozy fruit. Stay tuned…