This classic Manhattan cocktail is classic for a reason! Rye whiskey, sweet vermouth plus a secret ingredient that gives a little twist on the original drink!
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I only get sick about once a year, but when I do I am OUT. When I first started getting sick and I realized I wouldn’t be able to do my normal blogging work (recipe testing, photography, editing and writing), I thought I would still be able to use my time to be productive. You know, organize my pinterest, read some educational articles, the types of things that are usually on my to do list, but towards the bottom. Do you know what I actually did in my week of sick time?
1. Lay on the couch.
2. Watch Netflix
3. Make tea
4. Finish “Furiously Happy” by Jenny Lawson (love her)
5. Resort to watching old episodes of “Angel” because I ran out of TV shows.
So turns out I was not able to be productive during my sick leave. But luckily Mr. Briar and I are finally on the mend, and what better way to celebrate than with a classic Manhattan cocktail?
The Classic Manhattan cocktail
Have you ever had a Manhattan? It is one of Mr. Briar’s favorite drinks. The problem with the Manhattan is that it can be really badly-made sometimes. The first time he had one it was terrrrible. Like all things with just a few ingredients, it is important to use high quality ones.
The Manhattan is an acquired taste for some
I think the Manhattan is an acquired taste. When we made a batch for recipe testing purposes (hey, it’s my job, what are you gonna do?) I think it was the first time I actually LIKED a Manhattan. We also stumbled on a little addition that is optional and not a classic ingredient, but will sweeten up the drink a bit if you like that.
This little trick adds sweetness and complexity to your Manhattan
What is the secret ingredient? Cherry juice. Specifically, just a few drops of the syrup from the jar of Maraschino cocktail cherries. Give it a try and see what you think.
- 2 ounces Rye Whiskey
- 1 ounce Sweet Vermouth
- 3 dashes angostura bitters
- 2-3 cocktail cherries
- A few drops of syrup from the cocktail cherries optional
- Fill a mixing glass or cocktail shaker with ice.
- Add whiskey, sweet vermouth, bitters and cherry syrup (if using).
- Stir for 90 seconds.
- Strain into a martini glass
- garnish with cherries.
The cherry syrup is not traditional but gives the cocktail a slightly sweeter flavor. Perfect for people who are not whiskey drinkers or find the cocktail too overpowering. Never use dry vermouth for this drink, only good quality sweet vermouth. Some recipes suggest rubbing an orange peel around the rim of the cocktail glass; it is a nice thought but not strictly necessary. A dash of orange bitters can be added to achieve a similar effect. The perfect Manhattan is stirred, not shaken. No need to use your fancy ice for this; regular ice will do. We use ice to dilute and chill the drink before serving it.
Have you ever had a Manhattan? What is your favorite drink?
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Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you purchase the items I recommend through the links I provide, I get a small commission. For more info, please see my disclosure policy. Thanks for supporting Fox and Briar!