The Major Award/Photo by Donna Turner Ruhlman

Last year, Claudia Young created this truffle-infused cocktail for The Velvet Tango Room, Paulius Nasvytis’s well-known Cleveland bar. It’s today’s choice for the Friday Cocktail Hour because it is the very embodiment of the holidays: rich, fragrant, expensive, delicious. I loved milk punch when a friend introduced me to that simple concoction—bourbon, milk and sugar. This is a milk punch times ten—a decadent but simple combo of Scotch, truffled honey, and half-and-half.

This Cleveland original (first posted here), was named by a Clevelander for a movie filmed here, a movie about Christmas. What more appropriate drink could there be as Christmas approaches for today’s Hour?

The Major Award

To serve 1:

  • 1.5 ounces Oban (or other single-malt whiskey)
  • 1 ounce truffle honey syrup made with a 1:1 water to honey ratio
  • 1 ounce half-and-half
  • 1 slice of orange zest for flaming
  1. Mix liquids.
  2. Pour over ice.
  3. Flame the zest: ready the peel over the glass, hold a lighted match close to the peel, moving the flame up and down to draw the oil out, then pinch the peel so that the oils pass through the flame and onto the drink.

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© 2013 Michael Ruhlman. Photo © 2013 Donna Turner Ruhlman. All rights reserved.



8 Wonderful responses to “Cocktail Hour Reprise: The Major Award”

  • Chappy8

    As a scotch, bourbon, & whiskey lover, I must call a major foul on the “Major Award.” Using single malt scotch–and suggesting any single malt scotch will do–is a major party foul. Single malt scotch has to options with/without an ice cube. The Serious Eats article in the “other links” implies this as well. Anyway, I’m sure this is a delicious drink, but I’d put some sort of blended whiskey or scotch in it and you can pull the single malt scotch from my cold, dead (and drunken) hand.

  • Tags

    My wife brought home a single-malt from Taiwan called Kavalan. They even spell “whisky” without the e. She wisely brought a small bottle along with the big one (I haven’t opened the big one yet) and made a Major Award with it. Purists may complain, but it holds its own with the single malts from that other isle. Of course, it’s best with just a little water.

  • Allen

    I have upped my aged eggnog recipe thanks to the original post of this drink.
    I use less expensive whiskey @ 6.99 a ltr and add truffle honey and orange peel. It is as good as the original Oban cocktail.
    Maybe better.

  • Tom Abella

    Anyone try this with regular honey? Read this too late to order any online for Christmas delivery, and was disappointed that Wegman’s didn’t have any.

    How about regular honey and a tiny dash of white truffle-infused salt?


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