How to make an old fashioned

Old Fashioned is the name of a popular whiskey-based drink as well as an English expression meaning “old-fashioned”. The name is significant as the drink, in its basic form, is actually a drink that can be exaggerated to say that it is old-fashioned. The simplest version of the Old Fashioned cocktail is made from whiskey, lemon peel, sugar, water and bitters.

History of Old Fashioned

The official Old Fashioned drink was born in 1881. It was created at the Pendennis Club gentlemen’s club in Louisville in honor of the famous bourbon producer Colonel J.E. Pepper.

Ever wondered where the Old Fashioned drink came from? To answer this question, we must go back to the nineteenth century, when the first time in the magazine The Balance, and Columbian Repository, an anonymous reader asked about the definition of the word Cocktail. In response, the editors wrote – “Cocktail – is a stimulating liquor composed of various drinks (e.g. whiskey), water, sugar and bitter substances such as angostura.”

old fashioned recipe

This is how the first definition of cocktail was created and its zealous conquests began in American lands. Over time, bartenders began to experiment and add various types of liqueurs to their alcohol creations. A new trend was born – colorful drinks. These traditional cocktails, true to the old definition, are hidden under the name Old Fashioned, or “old-fashioned” drinks.

The basic recipe for this drink is very similar to the first cocktail recipe ever published by the American journal The Balance and Columbian Repository in 1806. The oldest recipe mentioned was rather general and sounded like this: “A cocktail is a stimulating liquor made of strong alcohol of any kind, sugar, water and bitters.” It can be seen, therefore, that the recipe for the Old Fashioned base quite stick to the guidelines of the early nineteenth century, the only exception is the addition of lemon peel. This is also the reason why this drink has this and no other name – it is simply old-fashioned in the world. Interestingly, the Old Fashioned cluster used to be used to create the names of many different drinks.

Old Fashioned recipe


  • 40 ml whiskey,
  • 100 g sugar,
  • 50 ml boiling water,
  • 3-4 drops of angostura,
  • a few ice cubes,
  • orange peel

Start by preparing sugar syrup. This is the best way to sweeten a drink because the sugar will not dissolve in alcohol. You need to dissolve it in boiling water – in a separate glass. Combine these two ingredients, mix and wait until the sugar dissolves and the whole mixture cools down (beware – it must be really cold, not just lukewarm – it’s best to wait until it reaches room temperature, and then cool it slightly in the fridge!). Take an old-fashioned glass (thick-bottomed) and put a few ice cubes in it to cool the glass well. Pour a portion of whiskey, then add chilled sugar syrup and a few drops of angostura. Mix everything with a mixer, add a little grated orange peel (and possibly a few drops of freshly squeezed juice) and serve.



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