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Old Fashioned

A classic Bourbon cocktail that is both tasty and straightforward to make.

Old Fashioned
Old Fashioned

Whether you're ordering an Old Fashioned at a bar or making the classic cocktail at home, know this, it's basically a sweetened take on whiskey neat. That's because the cocktail introduces nuanced additives to the primary spirit (whiskey) instead of a scientist's mixing and matching of spirits like say a Long Island Iced Tea.

History of the Bourbon Old Fashioned

It should be noted that the Old Fashioned is the official cocktail of Louisville, Kentucky. According to the Courier Journal, the Old Fashioned got its name in the late 19th century when it put on the menu at the Pendennis Club in 1881, where it has remained in service ever since.

There is some pushback to this, as Thrillist points out that Jerry Thomas' Bartenders Guide: How To Mix Drinks featured a drink entitled, Old Fashioned Holland Gin Cocktail, which is somewhat of a carbon copy of this recipe, only swapping the bourbon out for gin. Modern American Drinks was published a decade later. This boozy tome appeared to solidify the bourbon/citrus/angostura concoction in the hearts of mixed drink concocters.

"During his visits to New York, often at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, Colonel Pepper was known to socialize with other American captains of industry, including John D. Rockefeller, Theodore Roosevelt, C.V. Vanderbilt, Charles A. Pillsbury, Fred Pabst, Charles L. Tiffany, & William Steinway. It was at the Waldorf that Colonel Pepper is credited with introducing the world to the “Old Fashioned” cocktail, which was said to have been invented in his honor by a bartender at the famed Pendennis Club in Louisville."

After the end of Prohibition, it became well established that ordering an Old Fashioned meant you were getting the Bourbon-based drink that we know and love today.


  1. Muddler
  2. Rocks Glass


Ingredient Amount
Angostura Bitters 3-4 Dashes
Bourbon 2oz
Orange Peel 1
Sugar Cube 1
Garnish Orange Peel (optional)

Substitute Ingredients & Variations

  • You can replace the Sugar Cube with Simple Syrup.
  • You can replace the Angostura Bitters with your choice of flavoring bitters.
  • You can replace the Bourbon with Rye Whiskey to alter the flavor profile.


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What type of glass do you pour an Old Fashioned cocktail into?

A Rocks Glass.