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Whether you prefer to drink your whiskey neat, with a splash of water, in a cocktail, or on the rocks, there’s no right or wrong way to enjoy the popular spirit. However, there are ways to enhance the experience – especially if you like your whiskey chilled. Whiskey rocks (also known as whiskey stones) are a sophisticated and reusable alternative to ice cubes, helping to keep drinks chilled without diluting the whiskey’s flavor, which is a common problem when using ice.
The best whiskey rocks are a staple for whiskey aficionados, but they are simple enough for anyone to use as long as you have space in your freezer and the foresight to plan ahead (whiskey rocks should be kept frozen for about four hours before use). Store them like you would with ice; when you’re ready to serve your drink, drop the cube-shaped stones into your glass. The whiskey rocks will help cool down your drink while bringing out a different flavor profile than you would get if you drank the whiskey neat.
When choosing the right set of whiskey rocks to suit your tastes, it’s important to consider their composition. Whiskey rocks made out of soapstone will keep your drink chilled – but not as chilled as ice cubes would. This is intentional since whiskey will start to lose the nuances of its flavor around 45 degrees Fahrenheit. However, if you simply love an ice-cold drink but are frustrated when your whiskey is too watered down, stainless steel whiskey rocks will keep your beverage much colder (and for a longer period of time).
Even if you’re just starting to seriously explore your whiskey palate, whiskey rocks are a must-have tool for experimenting with temperatures, with different drinks, and with finding your preferred drinking styles. We found four popular sets to get you started.
1. Quiseen Chilling Stone
Made from natural soapstone, these chilling stones are the classic answer to the whiskey drinker’s dilution problem. They are designed to keep whiskey chilled at an enjoyable temperature that won’t be so cold that the whiskey’s natural flavors start to go unnoticed.
The finely-crafted cubes are non-porous, which means that there are no orders or tastes coming from the rocks and into your beverage. We also love that this set comes with nine rocks – perfect for a small happy hour or generously filling your own glass.
2. Amerigo Stainless Steel Whiskey Stones
These eye-catching stainless steel whiskey stones add class to your glass as they keep your beverage cool. The elegance of stainless steel – paired with its high cooling technology – make these the perfect stones for entertaining and impressing guests. Plus, the stone’s rounded edges prevent scratches on your whiskey glasses, making these safe to use in even your fine glassware.
In addition to the eight stones, this set comes with two coasters, ice tongs, and a freezer tray.
3. Quiseen Premium Whiskey Stones Gift Set
Not only will whiskey connoisseurs enjoy the gentle, flavor preserving chill made possible by pure soapstone, but the craftsmanship of this set easily lends itself for gift-giving. The eight whiskey stones come preserved in a premium wooden gift box that can be used to display the stones when they are not being prepared for use in the freezer. Plus, natural soapstone is easy to clean and re-use time and time again. After a simple rinse, they can go back in the freezer. Whiskey drinkers will want to keep these on hand.
4. Kollea Stainless Steel Reusable Ice Cubes
Measuring 2.5 inches by 2 inches, these stainless steel whiskey stones have a larger cooling surface area than average whiskey stones – or ice cubes for that matter. Their internal coolant gel technology synergizes with the stainless steel casing in order to keep your beverage ice-cold for long periods of time.
Whiskey drinkers who are used to generous servings of ice and prefer a deep chill will enjoy this set. Since you only need one stone per glass, this set of six is great for sharing at a party or at-home happy hour.
This set includes an ice tray and tongs, in addition to the whiskey stones.