The Old Fashioned is a classic cocktail – thought to be THE original. The original cocktails were just liquor + bitters + water, exactly what this drink is. In fact, the name “Old Fashioned” comes from the turn of the 20th century when American bartenders started to create other cocktails and someone in search of this type of drink would need to order an old fashioned-style cocktail.
These are so simple to make but it can be incredible hard to find a bartender who knows how to make a good one. Many bartenders make the mistake of muddling the fruit or not using bitters. I learned to make these at the amazing Bourbon and Branch Speakeasy here in San Francisco. This is the place to go for amazing Bourbon drinks in a gorgeous setting with the best bartenders in the industry! I took my fiance to a private cocktail (mixology) course here and loved every second of it!
The Old Fashioned is easy to make, easy to drink and perfect for watching Mad Men. Don Draper would definitely approve!
One note before we start… Ice cubes can make or break the drink. Those little chipped cubes they use in bars and that come in bags at the grocery can be the kiss of death to a great cocktail. I recommend using a BIG ice cube. Without going into too much detail about the physics of surface area and melt time, it won’t water your cocktail down as quickly, preserving the taste you are working so hard to create. I HIGHLY recommend these ice cube trays – worth every penny!
On to the mixing: