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The Perfect Old Fashioned Cocktail

The Perfect Old Fashioned Cocktail


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Published by George Sinclair
Here is how to make the perfect Old Fashioned (Whiskey Cocktail); The ultimate test of a bartenders mettle. Particular focus is on the London, England, way of making the drink.
Here is how to make the perfect Old Fashioned (Whiskey Cocktail); The ultimate test of a bartenders mettle. Particular focus is on the London, England, way of making the drink.

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Published by: George Sinclair on Mar 26, 2007
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The Perfect Old Fashioned Article – Page 1 of 3 The Perfect Old Fashioned. By George Sinclair.

There is one drink that a London bartender is not only expected to know but know well, and that is the Old Fashioned Whiskey Cocktail. The most widely used method for preparing an Old Fashioned, in the UK, is that which was advocated by cocktail guru Dick Bradsell. Dick's method involves lots of stirring and incremental additions of bourbon, ice, bourbon, ice, until the desired proportions are achieved. Dick derived his method for the Old Fashioned from a recipe that is contained in his favourite cocktail book, the 1948 book "The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks", by David Augustus Embury, a prominent New York lawyer, with a perchance for cocktail snobbery. "Pour into each glass 1 to 2 teaspoonfuls simple syrup and add 1 to 3 dashes Angostura. Stir with a spoon to blend the bitters with the syrup. Add about 1 oz. whisky and stir again. Add 2 large cubes of ice, cracked but not crushed (see page 100). Fill glass to within about 3/8" of top with whisky and stir again. Add a twist of lemon and drop peel in the glass. Decorate with a maraschino cherry on a spear. Serve with short stir rod or Old-Fashioned spoon." The amount of sugar you use in an Old Fashioned should be strictly controlled, it is just there to balance the bitters, not to be a dominant presence in the drink. If the Old-Fashioned you make has a noticeably thicker viscocity, due to the over-use of sugar, then you have made the drink incorrectly. A good test, which will help you achieve balance in your Old-Fashioneds, is to try 50ml of good quality bourbon over ice, with the squeezed citrus oils from an orange twist in it. Taste the drink, and notice how the orange oils and bourbon work together. To the same glass, add two heavy-handed dashes of Angostura bitters; Upon tasting this you will noticed that the drink is now unbalanced, so this is where the sugar comes in, once again, to the same glass, add a dash of Gomme Syrup (or thick sugar syrup made with 9 parts sugar to 1 part water). Keep tasting the drink and adding small amounts of sugar until the whole cocktail is harmonius in taste. Do not add so much sugar syrup that the drink becomes syrupy, or the flavours of the bourbon and orange (which you already tasted seperately) are smothered. If you have accomplished this little exercise successfully, then you should notice that the amount of sugar you actually need in an Old-Fashioned is almost half the 10ml amount that most bartenders use. If you don't like bitters or bourbon then don't say your favourite http://www.thinkingbartender.com

This is where most people go wrong. who are ordering. less sweet. Fill the glass completely with ice cubes.com . and it is done. not you. briskly stir the drink. It is they. Add a few dashes of sugar syrup.e. i. pre-dissolved) it can more easily be incorporated into drinks which are not deemed to be sweet enough for the guest. as most people are not connoiseurs of cocktails. To the same glass add a small amount of Gomme Syrup (9:1 sugar syrup). and then pour 50 millilitres of good quality bourbon (Knob Creek or Makers Mark) over the ice. coming into contact with the story which claims to be from the Pendennis Club. and finally slide the orange peel into the glass itself. Imagine trying to sweeten a completed Old-Fashioned. Old-Fashioned is a more preferable libation than one that is laden with sugar.e. it is best to prepare yourself to add more sweetness if required by the guest. Swirl the bitters around the all the interior surface of the glass. Stir with a barspoon. a one penny piece is the maximum. After you finish stirring you should notice that the level of the ice in the glass has dropped significantly. This is the major plus point of using sugar syrup in your cocktails. to visualise the amount you need. Once again fill the glass to the top with ice. or Mojito with sugar cubes. Add a stirrer and serve. this ice-water is now incoporated into the liquid portion of the drink. as you would a Martini or Manhattan cocktail. this is due to the ice melting. How to make the Perfect Old-Fashioned. Caipirinha. in Louisville. Kentucky. they cover the entire bottom of the glass in Sugar syrup.The Perfect Old Fashioned Article – Page 2 of 3 drink is an Old-Fashioned. and then squeeze a freshly cut piece of orange peel onto the surface of the drink. A drier. also known as a rocks or whisky glass. Having a liking for Bourbon and Coke also doesn't qualify you as an Old-Fashioned aficionado. afterall. not from those stylish looking little droppers. However. by tilting and rolling with your wrist.thinkingbartender. the first citation for this often referred to story is actually from 1931. Wipe the same orange peel around the edges of the glass. I estimate this to be roughly 25-30 rotations. in some way. imagine that you are just pouring enough syrup to coat the side of a five pence piece. The Pendennis Club Fallacy. giving it a couple of more stirs to settle the ice. from the actual Angostura branded bottle. and then consuming the drink. Take a double Old-Fashioned glass. it would be awkward to say the less. It is impossible to write an article on the Old-Fashioned without. to this add two hefty dashes of Angostura Bitters. paying for. as is from Old Waldorf Bar Days. Interestingly. briskly and smoothly executed. by Albert Stevens http://www. as the sugar is already in liquid form (i.

Col. due to the Pendennis Club not being founded until 1881. and the first references to the Old-Fashioned Whiskey Cocktail coming from February 1880. according to cocktail historian and cocktail book author." However. Pepper. The Old-fashioned Whiskey cocktail was said to have been the invention of a bartender at the famous Pendennis Club in Louisville. of which Col.thinkingbartender. Pepper was a member. or in honor of. http://www.The Perfect Old Fashioned Article – Page 3 of 3 Crockett: "This was brought to the old Waldorf in the days of its “sit-down” Bar. of Kentucky. David Wondrich. James E.com . proprietor of a celebrated whiskey of the period. and introduced by. this story is completely false.

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