Part of the team
that created the award-winning Old Hamer, Blake Jones is serious about his Old Fashioned formula. For the most classic flavor, he does not recommend substituting brown or white sugar in the simple syrup. Jones takes a fairly heavy hand with the classic Angostura bitters in this recipe, though other bitters can be used. Don’t shake the drink in a shaker; just stir it. Some bartenders add zest or an orange wedge to the drink, but Jones thinks this distracts from the whiskey flavor. And splurge on the Luxardo cherries—the drink won’t be the same without them. You can find them at most finer liquor stores and some grocery stores.
Classic Old Fashioned
Makes one cocktail (with additional simple syrup for more drinks)
- 2 cups Demerara sugar
- 1 cup water
- 2 ounces whiskey of your choice
- 3-6 dashes Angostura bitters
- Cracked ice
- One large piece of orange zest, pith removed
- One Luxardo cherry
- In a medium saucepan, bring sugar and water to a boil and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until cold.
- Fill Old Fashioned or other wide glass with cracked ice. Add whiskey and 1/4 ounce Demerara simple syrup to the glass and shake bitters over the top. Stir gently.
- Express the orange zest by squeezing it as you rub the zest around the rim of the glass. Discard zest. Add cherry. Serve.