When Don Draper single handedly brought the Old Fashioned back into fashion, the Mad Men leading man also signaled a revival to the cocktail scene. Bartenders across the globe started to look backwards for inspiration and the overly sugary confections that once cluttered bar menus quickly fell to the wayside. It’s a wonder to think what two ounces of Bourbon seasoned and seasoned can do.
Quality ingredients and attention to detail, that’s all a drink needs to be great (that idea can actually be applied to many things in life). That’s why we love an Old Fashioned. That’s also why the first rule of making an Old Fashioned is to use a quality Whiskey, and we usually opt for Bourbon.
The Old Fashion has been around for over 200 years and officially received its name in the 1880s. It’s one of what we’d call “The Big Six” (along with the Daiquiri, Jack Rose, Manhattan, Martini, and Sidecar). Louisville, Kentucky has claimed responsibility for creating the drink, stating it was developed at the Pendennis Club in honor of Colonel James E. Pepper, a prominent bourbon distiller (there remains a reasonable amount of suspicion surrounding this declaration), and the city declared the beverage its official cocktail in 2015.
An Old Fashioned is made by muddling sugar with bitters, adding Whiskey or, and garnishing with a twist of citrus rind, generally orange. It is traditionally served in an old fashioned glass (aka a rocks glass), which predates the cocktail.
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 3 dashes Angostura bitters
- 1 teaspoon water
- 2 ounces Bourbon
- Garnish: orange peel
Add the sugar, bitters and water into a rocks glass, and stir until sugar is nearly dissolved. Fill the glass with a large ice cube, add the Bourbon, and stir to combine. Rub the inside of an orange peel over the rim of the glass, then drop in. Voila.