If you are a whiskey drinker you might have have at one time had the cocktail called a Manhattan. It is one of the classic cocktails. In fact if is pretty much a whiskey martini.

We can debate whether a Manhattan should be made with bourbon, rye or even Canadian whiskey, but why spend all that time debating when we can spend it drinking?

The Manhattan is a cocktail that dates (depending on who's version of history that you'd like to follow) back to the 1860's. Regardless of whom you might think invented them they are commonly made in amounts similar to this:

  • 2 oz whiskey (Rye and Bourbon are most common, but you can also use Tennessee Whiskey or Canadian)
  • 3/4 oz Sweet (Red) Vermouth
  • 2 Dashes of bittersStir ingredients and serve in a rocks glass or my favorite, combine the ingredients in a shaker with a tsp of cherry juice and shake thoroughly. Strain, and serve in a martini glass, garnish with a cherry.

OK, so we have given the O.G. cocktail its due, but move over Manhattan, Boulvardier is still here. When I try to explain what a Boulvardier tastes like, it has a slightly sweet, slightly bitter. If you need an excuse to to bust out those big ice cube spheres, this is a great reason. The drink has been traced back to origins in the late 1920's by an American writer in Paris. Does the history matter? No, just the taste. For those of you who occasionally enjoy a Negroni,you will notice a similar list of ingredients and technique. It is a Negroni if you swap out the bourbon for gin and Old Pal, if you use Rye whiskey instead of the bourbon. Sound like this is just too much information to make sense? When you are home one night, try making a few of the different versions and try them. Then you will know which one is the ONE for you.  Here's that Negroni recipe:

  • 1 oz Bourbon
  • 1 oz Sweet/Red Vermouth
  • 1 oz Campari or Aperol

Shake or stir the ingredients with ice. Serve in a rocks glass with fresh ice and a squeeze of orange rind. Just a note, I think that the Boulvardier actually starts to taste even better when you have started to get a little bit of the ice melt going on.


For more information about the cocktails of the 5 boroughs on New York City, click here.