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Laoghaire’s Whisky Sour

Laoghaire’s Whisky Sour

Beyond the Books, Drums of Autumn, Voyager

“It’s true!”  She whirled toward Jamie, fists clenched against the cloak she still wore.  “It’s true!  It’s the Sassenach witch!  How could ye do such a thing to me, Jamie Fraser?”

“Be still, Laoghaire!”  he snapped.  “I’ve done nothing to ye!”

I sat up against the wall, clutching the quilt to my bosom and staring.  It was only when he spoke her name that I recognized her.  Twenty-odd years, ago, Laoghaire MacKenzie had been a slender sixteen-year-old, with rose-petal skin, moonbeam hair and a violent — and unrequited — passion for Jamie Fraser.  Evidently, a few things had changed.

She was nearing forty and no longer slender, having thickened considerably.  The skin was still fair, but weathered, and stretched plumply over cheeks flushed with anger.  Strands of ashy hair straggled out from under her respectable white kertch.  The pale blue eyes were the same, though — they turned on me again, with the same expression of hatred I had seen in them long ago.

“He’s mine!” she hissed.  She stamped her foot.  “Get ye back to the hell that ye came from, and leave him to me!  Go, I say!”

Diana Gabaldon, Voyager (Chapter 34 – Daddy)

“He said that he could not bear it longer — to dwell in the same house with me, to share my bed.”  She spoke calmly, as though reciting a piece she had learned by heart, her eyes still fixed on the empty spot where the pearls had rested.

“So he left.  And then he came back — with the witch.  Flaunted her in my face; bedded her under my nose.”  Slowly, she raised her eyes to Brianna’s studying her with quiet intensity, searching out the mysteries of her face.  Slowly, she nodded.

“It was she,” she said, with a certainly that was faintly eerie in its calmness.  “She cast her spells on him from the day she came to Leoch — and on me.  She made me invisible.  From the day she came, he could not see me.”

Brianna felt a small shiver run up her spine, despite the hissing peat fire on the hearth.

“And then she was gone.  Dead, they said.  Killed in the rising.  And him come home again from England, free at long last.”  She shook her head very slightly; her eyes still rested on Brianna’s face, but Brianna knew Laoghaire didn’t see her any longer.

“But she wasna dead at all,” Laoghaire said softly.  “And he was not free.  I knew that; I always knew that.  Ye canna kill a witch with steel — they must burn.”

Diana Gabaldon, Drums of Autumn (Chapter 34 – Lallybroch)


And somewhere in between, Outlander’s very own Bitter Betty shoots our hero with his own pistol.  Not like JAMMF to be caught unawares like that, now is it?

Thankfully for him, Number One Wifey has a few ampules in her arsenal, and so he lives to see another day.

As for Leghair, that woman really needs a drink.  Or ten.  This icy-sweet whisky cocktail with a sour twist kind of suits her — after all, years before she was a raving b*tch at Lallybroch, she must have had lips of honey in that alcove at Leoch…


I have no doubt that there’s at least a score of Scotsmen, somewhere, banging their heads against their screens at the sight of 16 YO Lagavulin, one of Scotland’s finest single malts, in a mixed drink.  And, if not for the fact that it was all we had on the shelf, I would generally agree.

But because I did use it, I found out how much you can change the nature of a whisky cocktail simply by your choice of scotch.  And although I wouldn’t do this everyday, I really enjoyed the lingering flavour of Lagavulin’s peat as it mixed with the lemon and honey.  Refreshing and soothing all at once.

(Click on the title below for a printable version of the recipe.)

Laoghaire’s Whisky Sour

The perfect naturally sweet, lightly sour whisky cocktail for a hot summer’s evening, whether you shot someone that day or not.

Yield:  Serves 2

  • Hot Water – 2 Tble (or to taste)
  • Honey – 2 Tble
  • Whisky – 2 oz
  • Fresh Lemon Juice – 2 Tble (1 Lemon)
  • Crushed Ice

Stir together hot water and honey until dissolved. Add whisky and lemon juice.

Serve over plenty of crushed ice, garnished with a citrus twist.

Sláinte Mhath!


  1. Denise Twist
    June 26, 2012 at 3:53 am

    I admit to being a tiny staggered at the sight of 16 year old scotch used in a cocktail but I bet it was utterly delicious! Is it just me or is Laoghaire a character to be pitied? Even though she is as nasty as can be I always feel badly for her and never more so than when she is with her crippled man (can’t recall his name) because he needs her. She just wants to be needed and loved and she could never get to that part of Jamie.

    Thank goodness – that’s Claire’s part!

    • Theresa
      June 26, 2012 at 6:02 am


      It was soooo good! But by no means an everyday drink…Laoghaire definitely deserves a little pity, but I find it hard to linger on sympathetic thoughts when I remember her manipulations as a teenager. I wonder what the Scottish word is for karma? 😉

  2. OutlanderFan
    June 26, 2012 at 5:09 am

    I just realized- I’ve had a whiskey sour before- and I liked it! There’s hope for me yet lol!
    And I have to agree, this drink is aptly named for Leghair Bitchface lol!

    • Theresa
      June 26, 2012 at 6:00 am

      Good news, Jenn! Start with what you like and know, and move on from there! Theresa

  3. Aaron Brown
    June 26, 2012 at 5:44 am

    One of my favorite Whiskey drinks! It’s also the one we use around here when someone is coming down with a cold. Make you feel better in no time. I want to feel sad for Leghair, she did get the bad end of the stick, but I just can’t ….dang her she shot Jamie.

    • Theresa
      June 26, 2012 at 5:59 am

      Medicinal whisky is my kind of whisky! When I think of Leghair, I have to say it’s a pretty short pity party…you reap what you sow, and 16 year-olds shouldn’t go around wishing ill of others. It may come back to haunt them in their later life. 😉

  4. Lee Ann
    June 26, 2012 at 6:26 am

    Love this 🙂

  5. The Mom Chef
    June 26, 2012 at 8:02 am

    I have to admit, I wouldn’t know 16 year-old Scotch from 6 day-old Scotch. I’m not a fan of either straight-up. I do liked mixed drinks though and have downed a whiskey sour (or two). You’ve picked a drink that fits Laoghaire perfectly. Unlike Denise, I don’t pity the woman. We make our fate. When she lost Jamie, she could have moved on without using and hurting people. Sour fits her. Well done!

  6. RavieNomNoms
    June 26, 2012 at 11:21 am

    I love the new look of you blog!! Fantastical!

    This is my mom’s absolute favorite drink!

  7. deniz
    July 2, 2012 at 6:05 pm

    Sounds yummy! I haven’t tried Lagavulin yet, though, so I’ll have it neat first. I can’t wait!

  8. Anna Ståhl
    August 22, 2012 at 11:59 pm

    I had never tasted a drink mixed with wiskey before, but I have made it to times by now and it has become a favorite. My guests have loved it as well =)

    • Theresa
      August 23, 2012 at 9:23 pm

      Glad you enjoy it, Anna! Thank you for letting me know! 🙂

  9. Martha Gregory
    September 6, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    Heated up, come winter time, would make a lovely toddie. Good for sore throats and nasty colds.

    • Linda Pitchford
      December 28, 2012 at 6:14 pm

      That was the one big perk about being sick at my grandparents house–we always got a nice hot toddie! I doubt my Grandpa made them with 16 yr old Lagavulin, but he would’ve enjoyed this recipe, hot or cold!

  10. Pat Nichols
    December 29, 2014 at 5:26 pm

    Your comment about the Scots-man banging his head against the screen due to the use of 16 y.o. Lagavulin in a mixed drink made me burst out in giggles. I love good Scotch, so I “get” that. Must try this drink. Love your posts & what you do, which includes lovely photos. New Year’s Happy Wishes & Greetings from Victoria, BC.

  11. Katherine Cooke
    August 25, 2015 at 5:48 pm

    A whisk(e)y sour is a classic Southern US drink. You can make them on the rocks or frozen. While on vacation with my folks last week I made several batches of frozen using Woodford Reserve Double Oaked Rye Whiskey. It’s delicious straight up as well! How we wing it at the beach: throw a bunch of ice in the blender. Squeeze 3-5 lemons over the ice, depending on how much ice is in there and how many people want drinks. Pour in a little OJ. Blend it as best as the poor ancient blender can do! Add some sugar or honey to taste. THEN add 1/4 – 1/2 cup of whisk(e)y or bourbon to taste and desired strength of cocktail. Blend it up one more time. This will help any last chunks of ice to properly mash up. Pour out into whatever cups are available, garnish with orange slice, and enjoy!

  12. Theresa Kiihn
    August 25, 2015 at 9:18 pm


    You are one fine chef, but you are also one hell of a writer. You choose just the right words and excerpts, crafting them into the perfect sentences and paragraphs, and then matching them to the perfect recipe. I’m envious and thankful for your skill! And now, thanks to you, I can admit to my indulgence of occasionally using a $65 bottle of Glenmorangie Nectar D’or whisky in place of my usual Two Gingers whiskey in making a special cocktail using Crabbies Ginger Beer. There’s nothing better. Yum!

    • Theresa
      August 26, 2015 at 12:54 pm

      Thank you for your kind words!

  13. Rhonda
    January 18, 2016 at 4:35 pm

    First time trying this and I love it!
    Made one change though: Instead of a citrus twist on top, I grated lemon zest all over the top, so that with every sip you taste the zest as well. Oh my gosh, it’s so good. Beautiful flavors. Definitely a keeper, thank you.

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