Savoring the Season: A Southern Old-Fashioned Cocktail

Our good friends invited us over for a new cocktail they were enjoying.  Typically, not fan of whiskeys but we were pleasantly surprised.
Old fashioned cocktails have a place in American culture. This cocktail dates back to 1806.   A recipe which included a mix of spirits of any kind, water, sugar cubes and bitters.   Leave it to the American mixologists to grow tired of the “traditional” and start adding a “new” fashioned approach to the “old” fashioned.  No doubt the traditionalists were agape in horror at the idea of adding oranges, cherries and even pineapples to a original four ingredient cocktail.  It would not be American if we did not twist and change the elements to bring about a modern twist on a very traditional cocktail.
On a whim we packed our bags and spent a few days in the beautiful city of Charleston, South Carolina.  With our friends cocktail still fresh on our minds, and an attempt to recreate it on our own prior to leaving town…our awareness was at a peak when we discovered the south takes it old-fashioned cocktail quite seriously.   This porch sipper gains momentum in the south with the first turn of autumn and continues long through the spring.

This version of the old-fashioned cocktail was discovered while on a walking food tour of old Charleston and belongs to the Cocktail Club Lounge located in the historic district and dedicated to the “art of the craft cocktail.”

Enjoy the warm, sweet southern feel of a modern Old-Fashioned cocktail.

Southern Old-Fashioned Cocktail
Serves 1
Recipe from Cocktail Club (Charleston)

2 brandied cherries
1/2 orange slice
3/4 oz simple syrup
3 oz. rye whiskey
Angostura or Peychaud bitters
soda water
lemon peel
1.  Muddle cherries, orange and simple syrup in a tall glass, then fill with ice.
2.  Add rye whiskey and stir with a spoon.
3.  Add several dash of bitters, to taste, and stir.
4.   Pour into double old-fashioned glass, and top with a splash of soda water.
5.  Squeeze and twist the lemon over the cocktail, and run along the rim of the glass.

15 thoughts on “Savoring the Season: A Southern Old-Fashioned Cocktail

  1. This cocktail sounds like fun to try! Lately we have been trying new cocktails instead sticking to our usual beer and wine. Putting this on on the \”must-try\” list, Velva. I would love to visit Charleston sometime, I've heard it's beautiful. We adored Savannah last summer, 3 days there was not nearly enough.


  2. The two glasses with the old-fashioned cocktail look good.A cocktail based on cherries, soda water, whiskey and bitters – can't go wrong; it tastes great and is very enjoyable.


  3. Sounds tasty. Did you make your own cherries? I rarely drink rye whiskey. Strange, I know, because I'm Canadian. I must buy some and try this.


  4. This looks soooooo good. Since I have the cherries and the bitters made by Woodford Reserve I should get me some Woodford Reserve. That may be my Sat. evening cocktail.Carolyn


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