The Old Fashioned: A Gentleman's Classic Cocktail
When it comes to the world of cocktails, there's no other cocktail that's more classic, refined, and well-known than the Old Fashioned. This is a drink designed for the gentleman (or lady) that loves a sense of sophistication and simplicity, perfectly combined together in a cocktail.
As we'll see, it's ironic that the ingredients of this cocktail are rather simple, yet the image this cocktail conjures is that of a complex, refined, and sophisticated individual. It's a another lesson in life that sometimes less is more! Our goal is to add a basic understanding of this classic cocktail to your repertoire of fine spirits and cocktail knowledge!
This drink goes way back. In fact, to the best of our knowledge, the first published definition of the word "cocktail"—came in the May 13, 1806 edition of a newspaper called "The Balance and Columbian Repository." In one of the publications, the paper's editor referred to a cocktail as consisting of spirits, bitters, water, and sugar, which essentially makes up the key ingredients of the "Old Fashioned."
When it comes to the actual name "Old Fashioned," that didn't come around until 1881. It was at the Pendennis Club in Louisville, Kentucky that a bartender came up with the name and famous recipe to honor Colonel James E. Pepper, a prominent bourbon distiller based out of Louisville Kentucky. Little did that bartender know that his cocktail would become a drink fit for a gentleman for generations to come.
To start, let's get down to the core ingredients that make up this cocktail. It's rather simple.
2 oz. rye or bourbon
3 dashes Angostura Bitters
1 Sugar Cube (Or Simple Syrup)
Orange Peel Garnish
1 old fashioned glass
1. Add sugar cube (or 1/3 oz simple syrup) to an Old Fashioned Glass
2. Add 3 dashes of Angostura Bitters
3. Add 2 oz. of rye or bourbon and mix for 20 seconds
4. Add ice to glass or strain over ice
5. Garnish with Orange Peel
Let's keep the old tradition going. The next time you have guests over to your home, introduce them to an icon of American culture and serve them and Old Fashioned. They'll be thankful you did. Cheers!