Old Fashioned Cocktail

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The Old Fashioned cocktail is a sophisticated whiskey cocktail. It's a classic and it's the perfect 'gateway drug' into the world of whiskey.
Old-Fashioned Cocktail

Ingredients:

Serve in an Old-Fashioned glass

  • 1 sugar cube
  • 2 1/2 shots bourbon or rye whiskey
  • 3 dashes Angostura bitters

Garnish1 cherry and/or 1 orange twist

How to Make:

  1. Muddle the sugar and bitters in a rocks glass.
  2. Add 1 shot of bourbon then stir with ice until the ice has slightly melted.
  3. Add the other 30ml of bourbon and stir once again, tasting as you go until the dilution is perfect.
  4. Add the garnish.

About

The Old Fashioned cocktail is as old as the Manhattan and it came about in the late 1800s. Over the years, there has been a lot of controversy among bartenders around this cocktail. The question of whether or not to muddle fruit in it (specifically maraschino cherrie and orange slices) is often debated.

Historically, no fruit was muddled in this cocktail and it appears to have only been introduced around the prohibition era.

Personally, I’m a no-fruit kind of guy and that’s how every venue I’ve worked at has ever made it. This quote from Crosby Gaige in 1945 sums up my opinion beautifully, “Serious-minded persons omit fruit salad from ‘Old-Fashioned’s,’ while the frivolous window-dress the brew with slices of orange, sticks of pineapple, and a couple of turnips.

But my opinion here is pretty much worthless because the old-fashioned is a very American drink. As such, it should ‘fashioned’ however the drinker likes it. So feel free to experiment with different fruits, brands of bitters, and types of bourbon or rye whiskey.

Above, is the recipe I’ve successfully used throughout my career.

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