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A Perfect Classic Old-Fashioned

Published: December 2, 2022

A Little History

The old-fashioned is one of the most basic, but also one of the most iconic cocktails. Developed in the late 1800’s, it is a combination of three ingredients (there are tons of variations on this, but they’re not worth acknowledging).

If you like whiskey, this is the drink for you. It is booze forward, and packs quite the punch, as the drink is almost entirely alcohol. If Don Draper drinks it, it means it’s one classy cocktail, right?

Speaking of Mad Men, Peggy Olsen once said: “You need three ingredients for a cocktail. Vodka and Mountain Dew is an emergency.” Boy was she right.

You Can Keep Your Cherry

Before sharing a purist recipe with you, it must be explained why there is no cherry. Well, because the cherry might very well be the biggest abomination to ever grace this cocktail! Ditch the fancy fruit, dude. Keep it pure, keep it classic and stop muddling fruit into your gorgeous cocktail.

The orange peel garnish is about the oil and aromatics that open up the flavor of the cocktail. When you squeeze that orange peel, you’ll smell it all over your hands and around your drink making station (it’s divine). The same can’t be said about the cherry.

It was once very common to add water or carbonated water to an old-fashioned, but thank goodness the cocktail world has moved away from that. Truth is, if you stir long enough, your ice melts and you create this dilution yourself. Sometimes you have to put in work for the worthwhile things.

The Recipe


A classic cocktail developed during the 19th century. Made with a combination of whiskey, bitters, sugar, and orange zest.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 mins
Course Cocktails, Drinks
Cuisine American
Servings 1 person


  • Rocks Glass
  • Stirring Spoon
  • Jigger
  • Citrus Peeler


  • 2 oz. Whiskey (Whichever kind you prefer)
  • .75 oz. Simple Syrup
  • 2-4 dashes Aromatic Bitters
  • 1 Slice Orange Peel


  • Fill rocks glass with ice
  • Add bitters to glass
  • Add whiskey to glass
  • Add simple syrup to glass
  • Stir all ingredients for 45 seconds
  • Peel off slice of orange peel and squeeze over glass
  • Wipe peel around rim of glass and drop inside cocktail
  • Enjoy!


Recipe for simple syrup can be found here.
Keyword bourbon, classic, delicious, flavorful, whiskey
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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About The Author
Jaime Garza
Jaime Garza
Jaime Garza is a member of the Manopause Team who happens to be well-versed in the language of cocktails and alcohol. She graduated from UCLA with a degree in history, and found herself behind the stick, slinging drinks for nearly 8 years (clearly using that fancy degree). Writing has always been one of her hobbies, and now she’s combining her talents to bring you A+ booze knowledge and some incredible recipes.
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