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Alden

Old Fashioned recipe?

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Alden

I've never had an Old Fashioned. Thinking about trying to make one. Does this recipe sound right to you?

2 oz bourbon whiskey

2 dashes Angostura® bitters

1 splash water

1 tsp sugar

1 maraschino cherry

1 orange wedge

Mix sugar, water and angostura bitters in an old-fashioned glass. Drop in a cherry and an orange wedge. Muddle into a paste using a muddler or the back end of a spoon. Pour in bourbon, fill with ice cubes, and stir.

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Alden

Are you supposed to mash up the orange and cherry into a sugar paste?

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Ejmharris
I've never had an Old Fashioned. Thinking about trying to make one. Does this recipe sound right to you?

2 oz bourbon whiskey

2 dashes Angostura® bitters

1 splash water

1 tsp sugar

1 maraschino cherry

1 orange wedge

Mix sugar, water and angostura bitters in an old-fashioned glass. Drop in a cherry and an orange wedge. Muddle into a paste using a muddler or the back end of a spoon. Pour in bourbon, fill with ice cubes, and stir.

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sku

Personally, I like the most basic Old Fashioned with no fruit. Same recipe, just skip the fruit and muddling except to garnish with an orange and/or lemon rind.

It's much easier to use simple syrup than sugar and water, but if you don't mind expending a little effort in muddling the sugar and water, go for it.

I also like a lot of bitters, so I'd probably shake 5 or 6 drops in, but that's just me.

Enjoy!

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michang5

Here's my simple syrup recipe:

The most common syrup is the 2:1 formula, which is pretty much standard for most cocktails. To make this, simply add 2 cups of sugar and 1 cup water to a pot and gently heat until all of the sugar is dissolved. Pour the syrup into a clean bottle and it's ready to use. You don't need to boil the water when making simple syrup.

A couple of suggestions that will make your simple syrup better include adding 1/4 cup of corn syrup to the mixture. This will help prevent crystallization of the sugar, since it is a super saturated solution. The other suggestion is to add one or two ounces of vodka or neutral grain spirit to the simple syrup after it has been bottled. This will help prevent mold or bacteria from growing.

----

Once that's done, I use this Old Fashioned recipe:

2 oz. (1/4 cup, 4 tbsp) bourbon or rye whiskey

2-3 dashes Angostura bitters

1/4 oz. (1-1/2 tsp, although I prefer 1 tsp) simple syrup (2:1 ratio sugar to water)

Orange peel

Ice cubes

In an Old Fashioned glass, add the syrup, bitters and orange peel. Use a muddler (I use back of our butter knives which have a smooth, rounded end) to gently press the orange peel to release the citrus oils. Add the whiskey and stir. Add ice cubes and stir again.

It's delicious!

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Alden

So, it sounds like whiskey with sugary cherry/orange flavors added, over ice

Pretty simple really.

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tanstaafl2
So, it sounds like whiskey with sugary cherry/orange flavors added, over ice

Pretty simple really.

I like to have the Old Fashioned the old fashioned way most of the time. To do this I tend to defer to David Wondrich for suggestions.

So my suggestion, despite what Dale DeGroff might say, is if you want a fruit salad, make a fruit salad. But keep 'em out of you Old Fashioned! Save the cherries for a Manhattan and have your oranges for breakfast.

Simple syrup is simpler than using a cube of sugar but sometimes it is fun to start with the traditional cube if you want to make a little show out of it. I also tend to think of standard simple syrup as 1:1 sugar and water. A 2:1 simple syrup is what I would call a "rich" simple syrup. In any case the difference between 1:1 and 2:1 can be significant so keep that in mind. I also like using Demerara sugar when I can get it. Getting it from the Demerara region of Guyana is possible but it is usually easier to find Demerara sugar from Mauritius these days.

The old fashioned "Old Fashioned"

1 cube Demerara sugar (or substitute 1/2 teaspoon loose Demerara sugar)

1/2 oz water

3 dashes (or so depending on taste) of bitters (Angostura or Fee Bros. whiskey barrel aged bitters are common options)

2 oz Rye (or Bourbon for a little sweeter drink) as desired - If you want to be really, really "old fashioned" about your Old Fashioned consider subbing Bols genever (the barrel aged version is particularly nice) or a decent Cognac (I like Pierre Ferrand 1840 which was purpose made for this sort of thing to be more like Cognacs of old). That is more likely what was used back when the cocktail first came into being in the early 1800's.

Muddle your sugar cube (or loose sugar) with the water and bitters. Add a large ice cube or two (or a nice round cube) in a single Old Fashioned glass and then the 2 oz of the spirit of choice.

If you just have to get fruit involved somehow twist a thin lemon peel over the top, rub it around the rim and discard.

Another old fashioned touch that the professor notes would be to add a dash, as in the kind of dash from a bitters bottle, of absinthe along with the lemon peel for a bit of variety. Just remember a little goes a long way!

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Alden

OK, interesting recipes. Thanks for your input guys.

I'm sipping the one I just made right now. Here's what I ended up doing:

2 teaspoons white sugar mixed with about a half oz warm water. Then I put in 6 drops of Angostura bitters. Then added a small wedge of orange and two cherries, and mixed it again with the spoon. Finally, added two oz of 4Roses YL and three cubes of ice. Mixed again.

It's sweet, and fruity, that's for sure.

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Alden

Well that went down pretty fast.

I think I will be making more of those in the future.

:)

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Alphanumeric

Add a large ice cube or two (or a nice round cube)

my cubes only seem to come in the angular variety. :(

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Alphanumeric
OK, interesting recipes. Thanks for your input guys.

I'm sipping the one I just made right now. Here's what I ended up doing:

2 teaspoons white sugar mixed with about a half oz warm water. Then I put in 6 drops of Angostura bitters. Then added a small wedge of orange and two cherries, and mixed it again with the spoon. Finally, added two oz of 4Roses YL and three cubes of ice. Mixed again.

It's sweet, and fruity, that's for sure.

Depending on how you found that one, you might want to consider cutting the sugar back to nearer a tsp and replacing your fruit with peels. You seemed to have enjoyed it as it was. However, experimentation with variables enables you to discover your ideal formula. This one may have been good, but perhaps you'll find a drier, more spirit-forward Old Fashioned sublime.

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Alden
Depending on how you found that one, you might want to consider cutting the sugar back to nearer a tsp and replacing your fruit with peels. You seemed to have enjoyed it as it was. However, experimentation with variables enables you to discover your ideal formula. This one may have been good, but perhaps you'll find a drier, more spirit-forward Old Fashioned sublime.

Yes, next time I will try it with less sugar and I'll use a higher proof whiskey or rye.

This was 80 proof 4R, but I have some 90 proof rye, and some OGD 114 that I would like to try.

Sublime sounds good. I like the sound of that. :)

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ratcheer

Sounds like I'm late, but I will give my recipe anyway. I like to keep my Old Fashioned simple.

1 tsp sugar

Just enough water to muddle the sugar, maybe 1 to 2 tsp

Several dashes Angostura, probably about 4

A shot of bourbon or rye

Several ice cubes - whatever seems right for the glass

Tim

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TheNovaMan

I use the recipe pretty much straight out of my dad's Mr. Boston Deluxe Official Bartender's Guide (1974 edition):

Into an old-fashioned glass put a small cube of sugar, a dash of Angostura bitter, a teaspoon of water and muddle well. Add 2 oz. Old Mr. Boston Blended Whisky. Stir. Add twist of lemon peel and ice cubes. Decorate with slice of orange, lemon, and a cherry. Serve with a swiggle stick.
I do two drops of Angostura on a sugar cube, a teaspoon of water, and mash it with my thumb. Then I swirl for an annoyingly long time to dissolve the sugar, add one ice cube and two ounces of bourbon, and there I go. That's plenty enough drink prep, so I don't bother with garnishes.

It's not something I do often, because I usually just drink my bourbon on a rock or two, or neat if it's good stuff. I wouldn't put anything nicer than EWB in an Old Fashioned, but that's just me.

Edit: if I were preparing a drink for a guest, I would be classy and use garnishes and a muddling stick instead of my thumb, but I'm the only guy I know in all of SW MI who likes Old Fashioneds, so for myself I just use my own thumb and skip the garnishes.

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steeltownbbq

Because I'm lazy - I use 1 part WT American Honey for the sweetness; and 2 parts WT 101 with several bitters shakes. Quick, easy and good

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Barclay Beach

I make mine with muddled fruit -- it adds an extra dimension. Otherwise, I'd prefer to drink the whiskey on it's own without all the sugar. But that's just me.

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squire

Harry Truman told the story of when he and Bess moved into the White House she ordered Old Fashioned cocktails as their pre dinner drinks and when they arrived she sent them back with instructions they needed more whisky. This happened a couple more times when the frustrated White House chef poured Straight Bourbon over rocks and sent them upstairs. Mrs. Truman said "tell the chef this is just the way we like 'em, old fashioned".

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TheNovaMan

That's awesome! :D

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Trey Manthey

Based on some recommendations, I've been using gum syrup and Bitter Truth Aromatic bitters cocktails for my Old Fashioned recipe lately. The syrup adds a silky texture when sipping compared to a sugar cube or simple syrup, and the bitters are less artificial smelling compared to Angostura.

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TheNovaMan

I have a 10 oz bottle of Angostura, which for me is probably more than a lifetime supply, so I'm hesitant to ask... are other bitters significantly better than Angostura?

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Trey Manthey

If you mean significant in the regard that it makes a difference for the better, then yes, I vouch for Bitter Truth Aromatic bitters. I've also sampled Scrappy's Aromatic bitters. Both are superior products at a premium price (~$16 for a good sized bottle). However, the difference is not so large that it will transform a cocktail recipe that calls for Angostura. You're not missing out on much, but I think you would be pleasantly surprised.

When it comes down to it, I would be happy cutting my huge bitters collection down to Angostura, Regan's, and Peychaud's.

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ratcheer
Because I'm lazy - I use 1 part WT American Honey for the sweetness; and 2 parts WT 101 with several bitters shakes. Quick, easy and good

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TheNovaMan
If you mean significant in the regard that it makes a difference for the better, then yes, I vouch for Bitter Truth Aromatic bitters. I've also sampled Scrappy's Aromatic bitters. Both are superior products at a premium price (~$16 for a good sized bottle). However, the difference is not so large that it will transform a cocktail recipe that calls for Angostura. You're not missing out on much, but I think you would be pleasantly surprised.

When it comes down to it, I would be happy cutting my huge bitters collection down to Angostura, Regan's, and Peychaud's.

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DBM

I started a long time ago enjoying a sweet, fruity old fashioned recipe:

2 packets of sugar

5 strong dashes of Angostura

2 luxardo cherries

1/2 orange wedge

Muddle everything

Add 3oz bourbon, 4 ice cubes and a splash of soda water

It was sweet and fruity with lots of strong flavors.

Over time I tweaked and adjusted all the ingredients as I trended to a drier, more aromatic and less fruity recipe. Currently I do:

1/2 teaspoon sugar

4 strong dashes of Boker's bitters

2 dashes of Fee Brothers cherry bitters

Swirl, mix and generally wait forever for sugar to dissolve

Add 2.5 oz bourbon, 3 ice cubes. Express an orange peel and rim glass.

The expressed peel and cherry bitters add great flavor without clouding the drink or having any annoying fruit in the glass.

I will slightly adjust any of the ingredients depending on my mood. I love playing around with different bitters, and sometimes I will use a rounded 1/2 teaspoon of sugar for a touch more sweetness. Flaming the expressed peel is fun too.

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ewj

I've read through this topic a couple of days ago, so forgive me if I write something that's already been stated.

I'm a passionate Old Fashioned drinker, so I'm gonna share my recipe. I don't like the idea of muddling fruit into your classic Old Fashioned since I'm pretty sure that's not the way to get the best result. The main attraction in this cocktail should be the bourbon.

Since I'm kinda lazy I usually go for the sugar syrup instead of using a sugar cube (I usually have rich syrup around - 2:1 sugar/water).

1. Pour 2oz of bourbon into a Tumbler. Add 2/3 barspoon (tops for my taste) of rich syrup. If you use simple syrup (1:1 sugar/water) go for 1 barspoon. Add 2-3 dashes of Angostura bitters.

2. Cut out a big orange zest, spray the essential oils over the cocktail (in order to do that, squeeze the zest over the cocktail holding it lengthwise, peel facing your glass). Twist the zest over the cocktail and then rub the edge of the glas with the peel. Drop the zest into the glass.

3. Now fill the glass up with ice and stir for 30-45 seconds.

4. Repeat what you did with the orange zest with a lemon zest (no need for too big a zest this time around, also no need for rubbing the edge of the glass, we don't want too much lemon aroma in this).

5. No more stirring needed, that's it. Enjoy!

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