As we roll into a long holiday weekend, countless folks are loading up their coolers with beer or perhaps their fridges with wine. When it comes to adult beverages, I am equal opportunity. (I once had a date ask me what my favorite drink was. After my somewhat lengthy response, he commented, “I’ve never had anyone answer that question by category before.”) For a change of pace, I recommend you start one of your evenings this weekend with that most civilized of cocktails: the Old Fashioned.
I am not big on whiskey but the hubby has introduced me to a number of whiskey-based cocktails I like and this is probably my favorite. The original cocktail, a classic old fashioned it just a sugar cube, a splash of bitters and water, and a whole lotta bourbon or rye. I prefer the version with fruit, as it helps me justify a second round based purely on health considerations. It’s still simple, though — all you need is an orange, some cherries (either fresh or maraschino), sugar, ice, bitters and water.
Cut off one thick slice of orange per glass and quarter it; throw in a few cherries; sprinkle with about a teaspoon of sugar per drink and add a few splashes of bitters.
Muddle real good to release all of the juices from the fruit and then fill the glass with ice. Pour in some whiskey until each glass is about 2/3 full; top the remaining 1/3 with water and stir. Taste it and see if you need more sugar — if so, stir some in til it fits your taste. I go with more sugar than the hubby and even sneak some cherry syrup into mine now and then. I don’t like sweet drinks but that whiskey is strong, y’all.
Garnish with an orange wedge and serve on up.