On the Sauce: Luck Be a Lady — The Old Fashioned Old Fashioned

I’M NOT A FAN OF GIRLY DRINKS. I like my liquor straight up or with a little ice. Nothing wrong with a nice Scotch. Or a not so nice Scotch. But speaking of girly, the only time I was ever lucky enough to get picked up by a girly of the same gender as myself was one night when I’d been drinking Old Fashioneds. I’m not saying that Old Fashioneds will also get you lucky with ladies, but there’s no harm trying, is there.

Since it’s called an Old Fashioned, why don’t I give you a little history on the cocktail, yes?

Of course it’s hard to pinpoint this kind of thing pre-iPhone cameras, but the saying goes (Wikipedia says) that the first time someone ever SAID “Old Fashioned” when they were talking about alcohol was way back in the 1880s at a joint called the Pendennis Club, down in Louisville, Kentucky. Of course Kentucky invented  it. What went down was the olden-times version of Tom Cruise circa Cocktail invented the drink on the spot. Way to go, Johnny-on-the-spot!

Later, bourbon distiller Colonel James E. Pepper brought the beverage up to the swanky Waldorf-Astoria in NYC. And, ta-da, a timeless classic was born. And that’s when they started letting women into bars. Okay, that part’s not true. I have no idea when that happened. But who isn’t glad they invented Ladies Nights? Am I right?

David Embury’s recipe, culled from his 1948 book, “The Art of Making a Mixed Drink”, has an Old Fashioned recipe everyone can get behind:

The Old Fashioned

  • 12 parts American whiskey
  • 1 part simple syrup
  • 1-3 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Twist of lemon peel over the top, and serve garnished with the lemon peel and a maraschino cherry.

Hang on to this recipe. So you can invite a lady up after a night out and show her a nice time… the old fashioned way. For more info, watch Rachel Maddow mix herself a glassful of olden times, below.

How to Make Your Old Fashioned Old Fashioned:


Related on The Smoking Jacket:
On the Sauce: Cuba Libres in My Living Room
On the Sauce: Kentucky Derby Mint Juleps