Classic Cocktails: The Old Fashioned – Bourbon

What’s old fashioned about it? There are lots of theories, but the most popular is that it is most like the original cocktail—liquor, with a little sugar and bitters added for relief. The liquor could be rye, bourbon or even gin. When cocktails started getting fancy, die-hards asked for an “old fashioned.” The first use of the name was said to have been at the Pendennis Club, a gentlemen’s club founded in 1881 in Louisville, Kentucky, in honor of Colonel James E. Pepper, a prominent bourbon distiller. Pepper  introduced it to the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel bar in New York City. Because of this murky story of its part in the old fashioned’s origins, Louisville named the drink as its official cocktail and celebrates with an old fashioned festival. Which seems a little greedy, since Louisville already claims the mint julep. Just sayin’.

4.5 cL bourbon

2 dashes angostura bitters

1 sugar cube

dash of plain water

Place sugar cube in old fashioned glass and saturate with bitters. Add a splash of water and muddle until dissolved. Fill glass with ice cubes and add whiskey. Garnish with an orange slice and a cherry.

Sean Neves, Water Witch

Antiguo Pedro

2 oz. High West Double Rye

1 oz. Lustau Pedro Ximenez
     “San Emilio” Sherry

4 dashes angostura bitters

Stir and strain over a large cold cube if you have one. Some people like to muddle orange in their Oldies and I won’t judge them for that. 

“I’ve been using Pedro Ximenez sherry in place of sugar in my home drinks for months. It’s just another level of flavor and texture and Lustau’s Pedro Ximenez “San Emilio” Sherry is typically available in Utah and is excellent.” 

See the other Classic Cocktails:

The Rob Roy – ScotchThe Daiquiri – RumThe Bloody Mary – VodkaThe Sidecar – CognacThe Margarita – TequilaThe Martini – Gin

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Mary Brown Malouf
Mary Brown Malouf
Mary Brown Malouf is the late Executive Editor of Salt Lake magazine and Utah's expert on local food and dining. She still does not, however, know how to make a decent cup of coffee.

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