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Improved Whiskey Cocktail Recipe

Happy Hour: Improved Whiskey Cocktail

One of my favorite restaurants, Beretta, has launched a series of cocktail classes. Taught by hunky bartender Ryan Fitzgerald, the hands-on seminars cover the basic skills and focus on a different spirit. I sat in on a whiskey lesson where Fitzgerald led us through the process of making an improved whiskey cocktail while providing a fascinating history of the drink.

A long time ago there were no names for cocktails, and each drink consisted of booze, sugar, and water. If you went to a bar and wanted a drink with whiskey, you'd ask for a "whiskey cocktail." If you preferred a drink with gin, you'd order a "gin cocktail."

When absinthe was introduced to the scene, barmen started adding a couple of dashes to the whiskey cocktail; they called this variation the "improved whiskey cocktail." Fitzgerald takes the drink to 2011 by adding a few dashes of bitters and Luxardo Maraschino liqueur. It's potent, but it's perfectly balanced. Get his recipe after the break.

Improved Whiskey Cocktail

Improved Whiskey Cocktail

Improved Whiskey Cocktail Recipe 2011-01-28 10:44:11

Ingredients

2 ounces whiskey (recommended: Wild Turkey 101 Proof Rye)
3/4 ounce Dubonnet Rouge
1/4 ounce Luxardo Maraschino
2 dashes bitters (recommended: Peychaud's)
3 dashes absinthe
Lemon twist, optional for garnish

Directions

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a mixing tin. Add ice and stir to combine.
  2. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon twist, if desired.

Makes 1 drink.

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