Whisky Classics

Last week we talked about bourbon and rye. We hope you took the opportunity to try some out and find something that suits your tastes. Now, here's a couple of classic whisky cocktails to make at home. 


The old fashioned is perhaps the quintessential whisky cocktail, and there are many ways to serve one. It's served on the rocks, but some people like to muddle an orange in theirs, or a cherry, or both. Some are garnished with orange slices, others with twists, and the eternal debate rages among cocktail bartenders whether to use raw sugar or demerara syrup. Our take on the old fashioned is simple, smooth and classic. 

Demerara syrup is a natural sugar syrup. It's easily made by combining equal parts hot water and sugar in the raw. We prefer to use demerara syrup because it makes for a smooth cocktail without sugar granules in the bottom of your glass. 

  • 2 Dashes Angostura Bitters
  • 1/4 Ounce Demerara Syrup
  • 2 Ounces Bourbon
  • Twist of Orange
  • Twist of Lemon                                                                                                                                                           

Combine bitters, bourbon and demerara syrup in a mixing glass. Add ice and stir. Strain over fresh ice in a rocks glass. Garnish with twists of orange and lemon. 


The Manhattan

The manhattan is an iconic rye whisky cocktail invented in New York City. While the exact origins are debated, it's an undeniably elegant and classic cocktail, whether served up, as it is traditionally served, or on the rocks. Don't forget, bourbon and rye have many similarities, so you may be breaking a bartenders taboo by making a Maker's Mark manhattan, but we encourage you to enjoy this drink any way you like it. 

An easy way to remember how to make a manhattan is to use the area code 212 that covers much of Manhattan. 

  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1 ounce sweet vermouth
  • 2 ounces rye whisky                                                                                                                                                                                                

Combine ingredients in a mixing glass, add ice and stir. Strain into a cocktail glass, and garnish with a brandied cherry. 

Your choice of sweet vermouth can also make a big difference in this cocktail. Our favorites are Carpano Antica Formula, or Punt e Mes, but use any type as long as you keep it chilled in the fridge in between uses, and not in the back of a cabinet like your grandmother does.