Place sugar cube in old fashioned glass and saturate with bitters, add
a dash of plain water. Muddle until dissolved.
Fill the glass with ice cubes and add whiskey.
Garnish with orange twist, and a cocktail cherry.
Old Fashioned recipe at International Bartenders Association
Old Fashioned is a cocktail made by muddling sugar with bitters,
then adding alcohol, originally whiskey but now sometimes brandy, and
finally a twist of citrus rind. It is traditionally served in a short,
round, tumbler-like glass, which is called an
Old Fashioned glass,
named after the drink.
The Old Fashioned, developed during the 19th century and given its
name in the 1880s, is an IBA Official Cocktail. It is also one of
six basic drinks listed in David A. Embury's The Fine Art of Mixing
4 Cultural impact
5 See also
7 Further reading
8 External links
The first documented definition of the word "cocktail" was in response
to a reader's letter asking to define the word in the May 6, 1806
issue of The Balance and Columbian Repository in Hudson, New York. In
the May 13, 1806 issue, the paper's editor wrote that it was a potent
concoction of spirits, bitters, water, and sugar; it was also referred
to at the time as a bittered sling. J.E. Alexander describes the
cocktail similarly in 1833, as he encountered it in New York City, as
being rum, gin, or brandy, significant water, bitters, and sugar,
though he includes a nutmeg garnish as well.
By the 1860s, it was common for orange curaçao, absinthe, and other
liqueurs to be added to the cocktail. The original concoction, albeit
in different proportions, came back into vogue, and was referred to as
"old-fashioned". The most popular of the in-vogue
"old-fashioned" cocktails were made with whiskey, according to a
Chicago barman, quoted in the
Chicago Daily Tribune
Chicago Daily Tribune in 1882, with rye
being more popular than Bourbon. The recipe he describes is a similar
combination of spirits, bitters, water and sugar of seventy-six years
The first use of the name "Old Fashioned" for a Bourbon whiskey
cocktail was said to have been at the Pendennis Club, a gentlemen's
club founded in 1881 in Louisville, Kentucky. The recipe was said to
have been invented by a bartender at that club in honor of Colonel
James E. Pepper, a prominent bourbon distiller, who brought it to the
Waldorf-Astoria Hotel bar in New York City.
With its conception rooted in the city's history, in 2015 the city of
Louisville named the
Old Fashioned as its official cocktail. Each
year, during the first two weeks of June, Louisville celebrates "Old
Fashioned Fortnight" which encompasses bourbon events, cocktail
specials and National Bourbon Day which is always celebrated on June
George Kappeler provides several of the earliest published recipes for
Old Fashioned cocktails in his 1895 book. Recipes are given for
Whiskey, Brandy, Holland gin, and Old Tom gin. The
Fashioned recipe specifies the following (with a jigger being 2 US
fluid ounces (59 ml)):
Dissolve a small lump of sugar with a little water in a whiskey-glass;
add two dashes Angostura bitters,
a small piece of ice, a piece of lemon-peel,
one jigger whiskey.
Mix with small bar-spoon and serve, leaving spoon in glass.
By the 1860s, as illustrated by Jerry Thomas' 1862 book, basic
cocktail recipes included Curaçao, or other liqueurs. These liqueurs
were not mentioned in the early 19th century descriptions, nor the
Chicago Daily Tribune
Chicago Daily Tribune descriptions of the "Old Fashioned" cocktails of
the early 1880s; they were absent from Kappeler's Old Fashioned
recipes as well. The differences of the
Old Fashioned cocktail recipes
from the cocktail recipes of the late 19th Century are mainly
preparation method, the use of sugar and water in lieu of simple or
gomme syrup, and the absence of additional liqueurs. These Old
Fashioned cocktail recipes are literally for cocktails done the
Use small bar glass
3 or 4 dashes of gum syrup
2 do [dashes] bitters Bogart's
1 wine glass of gin
1 or 2 dashes of Curaçao
1 small piece lemon peel
fill one third full of fine ice shake well and strain in a glass
Old Fashioned Holland Gin Cocktail
Crush a small lump of sugar in a whiskey glass containing a little
add a lump of ice,
two dashes of Angostura bitters,
a small piece of lemon peel,
one jigger Holland gin.
Mix with small bar spoon.
A book by David Embury published in 1948 provides a slight
variation, specifying 12 parts American whiskey, 1 part simple
syrup, 1-3 dashes Angostura bitters, a twist of lemon peel over the
top, and serve garnished with the lemon peel.
Two additional recipes from the 1900s vary in the precise ingredients,
but omit the cherry which was introduced after 1930 as well as the
soda water which the occasional recipe calls for. Orange bitters were
a popular ingredient in the late 19th century.
Old Fashioned recipe would have showcased the whiskey
available in America in the 19th century: Irish, Bourbon or rye
whiskey. But in some regions, especially Wisconsin, brandy is
substituted for whiskey (sometimes called a
Fashioned). Eventually the use of other spirits became
common, such as a gin recipe becoming popularized in the late
Common garnishes for an
Old Fashioned include an orange slice or a
maraschino cherry or both, although these modifications came
around 1930, some time after the original recipe was invented.
While some recipes began making sparse use of the orange zest for
flavor, the practice of muddling orange and other fruit gained
prevalence as late as the 1990s.
Old Fashioned is the cocktail of choice of Don Draper, the lead
character on the
Mad Men television series, set in the 1960s. The
use of the drink in the series coincided with a renewed interest in
this and other classic cocktails in the 2000s.
In the movie
It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World
It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963), pilot Tyler
Fitzgerald (Jim Backus) directs passenger Dingy Bell (Mickey Rooney)
to the aircraft's bar to "make us some Old Fashioneds." Annoyed by
suggestions that he should limit drinking while piloting an airplane,
and finding Bell's Old Fashioneds too sweet, Fitzgerald turns the
controls over to Bell's sidekick Benjy Benjamin (Buddy Hackett) and
repairs to the back of the plane to "make some Old Fashioneds the Old
Fashioned way, the way dear old dad used to." When Benjamin asks what
if something happens, Fitzgerald replies, "What could happen to an Old
List of cocktails
Cuisine of Kentucky
History of Louisville, Kentucky
^ "Old Fashioned". International Bartenders Association. Retrieved 17
^ "Raising a glass to the cocktail",
Newsday article by Sylvia Carter,
May 17, 2006.
Newsday archive; Highbeam archive. Relevant paragraph
quoted at ArtHistoryInfo.com Archived 2007-09-27 at the Wayback
Oxford English Dictionary
Oxford English Dictionary (3rd ed.). Oxford University
Press. September 2005. (Subscription or UK public library
^ Alexander, J.E. (1833). Transatlantic Sketches, comprising visits to
the most interesting scenes in North and South America, and the West
Indies, Volume II.
^ "THE DEMOCRACY IN TROUBLE". The Chicago Daily Tribune. Chicago,
Illinois. February 15, 1880. p. 4. Retrieved January 9,
^ a b c Wondrich, David (2007). Imbibe!.
^ Crockett, Albert Stevens (1935). The Old Waldorf-Astoria Bar
^ a b c Kappeler (1895). Modern American Drinks: How to Mix and Serve
All Kinds of Cups and Drinks. p. 19, footnote.
^ Thomas (1862). How to mix drinks: or, The bon-vivant's
^ Embury (1948). The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks.
^ "After 184 Years, Angostura Visits the Orange Grove", Saveur, by
Robert Simonson, December 8, 2008. 
^ a b c Marcia Simmons (2011-04-18). DIY Cocktails: A Simple Guide to
Creating Your Own Signature Drinks. Adams Media.
^ Checchini, Toby, "Case Study: The Old-Fashioned,
New York Times
New York Times Style Magazine, September 22, 2009.
^ Byrne, Mark (2012-02-21). "Russ Feingold Interview on the
Presidential Election 2012: Politics". GQ. Retrieved 2012-08-20.
^ Jones, Meg (August 8, 2016). "A sip of Wisconsin: Old-fashioned
contest". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Retrieved August 8, 2016.
^ a b Anthony Giglio, Mr. Boston (2008-11-10). Mr. Boston Official
Bartender's Guide. John Wiley & Sons.
^ McDowell, Adam (March 11, 2012). "Happy Hour: Ryan Gosling and the
lure of the old-fashioned". National Post. Archived from the original
on January 4, 2015.
^ Old-Fashioned or Newfangled, the Old-Fashioned Is Back, New York
Times, March 20, 2012.
Clarke, Paul (11 January 2009). "Are You Friends, After an Old
Fashioned?". The New York Times. Retrieved 8 November 2011. -
discusses internet forum debates among "home cocktail enthusiasts,"
Old Fashioned as a focal point.
Minnich, Jerry. "The brandy old-fashioned: Solving the mystery behind
Wisconsin's real state drink". The Daily Page. Madison, Wisconsin.
Archived from the original on 10 June 2005. Retrieved 8 November
Patterson, Troy (3 November 2011). "The Old-Fashioned". Slate.
Retrieved 8 November 2011.
Schmid, Albert W. A. (2012). The Old Fashioned: An Essential Guide to
Whiskey Cocktail. University Press of Kentucky.
Old Fashioned recipe, esquire.com
Old Fashioned with Bourbon, thebar.com
International Bartenders Association
International Bartenders Association Official Cocktails
List of IBA official cocktails
Between the Sheets
Long Island Iced Tea
Sex on the Beach
New Era Drinks
Dark 'n' Stormy
Lemon Drop Martini
Russian Spring Punch
List of cocktails