Old Fashioned Cocktail Recipe

Teddy Francisco
Last Updated on
by Teddy Francisco

Want to live out your Mad Men fantasy and indulge in the decadent Old Fashioned cocktail? Though Don Draper doesn’t exactly mix his drinks, it doesn’t take a lot of effort to make one of the best whiskey cocktails around.

Old Fashioned Cocktail

Get this guide to learn everything about the Old Fashioned drink.

Classic Old-fashioned Recipe


Here are the classic Old Fashioned ingredients:

  • 3 dashes of Angostura bitters
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (or a sugar cube)
  • 1 teaspoon of water
  • 2 ounces of bourbon
  • An orange peel twist for garnish

Add the bitters, sugar, and water to a mixing glass, and stir everything (preferably with a wooden spoon) until the sugar dissolves.

Fill the glass with ice and add your bourbon. Mix again until well chilled, then transfer to a rocks glass. Take the orange peel and squeeze to release some of its oils, then drop it in, and you’re done!

Classic Cocktail Calories and Nutrition Facts

Here’s a breakdown of what you’ll get with one Old Fashioned glass:

  • Calories: 157
  • Carbs: 14.2g
  • Sugars: 4.2g
  • Fats: 10g
  • ABV: 37%

It’s a relatively low-calorie cocktail recipe, but you can cut it down even more if you choose another type of sweetener instead of the sugar cube.

Serving Tip for Old-Fashioned Cocktails

Serving Old Fashioned Cocktail

This old-fashioned recipe screams elegance and sophistication, but these simple tips can take it to new heights:

  • Bourbon or rye whiskey: The original whiskey cocktail variant calls for bourbon, as its slightly sweet base works well with the sugar cube. However, rye whiskey also works well if you want something on the spicy side.
  • Use a large ice cube: The Old Fashioned is meant to be sipped, which could be a problem if the ice cubes melt and water down your drink. So, instead, use one large ice cube, which will keep the drink chilled and not melt as quickly.
  • Food pairings: The Old Fashioned works best with saltier dishes like pork or lamb chops. You can also serve it next to spicier desserts, especially if you make the cocktail with rye instead of bourbon.

Recipe Variations to Try

There are even more whiskey cocktails you can try based on this classic recipe:

  • Bourbon Toscano: Instead of clear ice cubes, opt for flavored ones to give your drinks subtle nuances. The ice won’t overpower the base of the Old Fashioned, but as it slowly melts, it can deliver hints of extra flavor.
  • Almond Old Fashioned: Add some extra Amaretto to your glass to get another classic bourbon cocktail in just one extra step;
  • Fizzy Old Fashioned: The classic recipe is smooth and strong, but you can get a bubblier version by adding some club soda to your whiskey glass at the very end.
  • Sugar replacements: If you don’t want to use granulated sugar at all, swap it for simple syrup, or even get more creative with the flavor profiles by adding maple syrup into the mix.
  • Garnish variations: Add a cocktail cherry next to the orange peel for a more complex drink.

Wrapping Up

The Old Fashioned is a simple cocktail recipe, but don’t let the name fool you. Its taste profile is anything but outdated, and the recipe itself can be a template for many other delicious cocktails.

So whether you make it with an orange peel or give the flavored ice cubes a shot, the Old Fashioned cocktail should be part of your whiskey cocktail recipe book!

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Teddy Francisco
Teddy Francisco
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