Fashion is fickle, and some styles fade away, but one drink will always be the peak of elegance and style, and that is the Old Fashioned. Learn to mix up the ultimate stylish and sippable accessory with this easy recipe for a Classic Bourbon Old Fashioned!
I love bourbon and classic elegance, which is why I feel that an Old Fashioned is one of the first drinks any aspiring home bartender should master. This simple recipe for a traditional bourbon old fashioned uses homemade simple syrup and super easy methods so anyone can nail this delectable drink.
Memorize this recipe before your next big soiree, and your guests will be blown away by your timeless cocktail style!
- Large Ice Cube: Large cubes or spheres of ice are ideal for Old Fashioned cocktails because they melt down slowly and look classy. If you don't have large cubes, just use whatever ice is on hand.
- Angostura Bitters: This is a home bar staple. Bitters is a concentrated cocktail flavoring with a kicking flavor of cinnamon and clove.
- Sugar Syrup: I prefer to use homemade simple syrup. Check out my recipe for simple syrup or grab a bottle from your local cocktail supply store.
- Bourbon: Rich, smooth, and warm bourbon is the star of this delectable drink. Bourbon is known for its earthy, woody, smoky, caramelized, and vanilla-infused flavors, but you should seek out a spirit with tasting notes you love. Single-barrel and craft bourbons are great options and never be afraid to try something new!
See the recipe card for quantities.
🍸 Step-by-Step Instructions
Step One: Add the Angostura bitters to a well-chilled stirring glass.
Step Two: Add the sugar syrup and bourbon.
Step Three: Fill the stirring glass with ice cubes and stir well.
Step Four: Add an ice cube to a well-chilled glass and pour the drink through a strainer into the glass.
Step Five: Garnish with an orange zest and enjoy this classic!
Awesome Orange: Bring some brightness to complement the bourbon by trading the traditional bitters for orange bitters.
- Measuring Tools/Jigger
- Stirring Glass and Bar Spoon: This duo helps mix the drink together without adding unwanted water.
- Old Fashioned Glass: A rocks glass is another great short glass that works well for this recipe.
- Julep or Hawthorne Strainer: This tool holds excess ice in the stirring glass so you’re left with only the delicious smooth Old Fashioned.
💭 Top tips
Stirring is everything with this classic cocktail. To avoid watering down the drink too much, insert the bar spoon on the side of the stirring glass filled with ice then gently guide the spoon along the inside of the glass in a circular motion. This allows the liquid to move without moving the ice, thereby causing less unwanted meltdown!
Another way to keep the drink crispy and unwatery is straining. Pouring the drink through a strainer helps to hold the ice back so your drink doesn’t become too watery.
Traditional Old Fashioned drinks use simple syrup which is not low-carb, but you can easily trade the simple syrup for a sugar-free version to cut the carbs.
Many bourbon and Old Fashioned fans love to make large ice cubes using big spheres or cube-shaped molds. This style of ice is very handy because it melts very slowly, but you do not need to rush out and buy special mold if you don’t already have it.
More Cocktail Recipes for You to Try
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Classic Old Fashioned Cocktail
- Measuring tools / Jigger
- Old fashioned or rocks glass
- Take a well-chilled stirring glass out of the freezer.
- Add 3 dashes Angostura bitters.3 dashes Angostura bitters
- Then add ½ oz Sugar syrup and 2 oz Bourbon.½ oz Sugar syrup, 2 oz Bourbon
- Fill the stirring glass with Ice cubesand stir well with a bar spoon.Ice cubes
- Take a rocks glass (ideally chilled), add 1 Ice cube (large, or several small ones), and pour the drink through a Julep (or Hawthorn) strainer into the glass.1 Ice cube
- Finally, cut off an orange zest (this means a small disc from the edge of the orange) and garnish the drink with it.
Nutrition values are estimates only, using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.
⛑️ Food Safety
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
For further information, check Safe Food Handling - FDA.