Whiskey Cocktails for Bartenders

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Whiskey Cocktails for Bartenders

Whiskey Cocktails all Bartenders Should Know

Puritans will tell you that whiskey needs to be enjoyed straight. However, there is so much fun to be had with blended whiskeys and cocktails. In fact, some of the most sophisticated and timeless cocktails in the world are made up of blended whiskey. They’re also perfect for people who haven’t yet quite warmed up to its taste. Here are some of the best whiskey cocktails that all bartenders should know.

Whiskey Sour

This is a simple, strong and flavoursome cocktail. It consists of 60ml of whiskey, 30ml of fresh lemon juice, 30ml of simple syrup and egg whites. This recipe comes from the original Boston concoction that made its debut in the late 19th century. Fill a shaker with ice and add all of the ingredients. Shake vigorously, ensuring that the egg whites blend well with the rest of the drink. Then, strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a maraschino cherry and a slice of orange.

Irish Coffee

This is the perfect after-dinner dessert-drink. It will definitely warm you up on a chilly winter’s evening! It is made up of 44ml of Irish whiskey, 150ml of hot drip coffee, sugar and cream. Whisk some heavy cream in a bowl until it has thickened. Then, pour the whiskey, coffee and sugar into a pre-heated glass mug. Stir together, and then top it off with a few spoonfuls of the heavy cream.


This classic recipe originated in New York in the 1870s. It’s sophisticated and conjures a certain degree of retro Manhattanite glamour. Pour 60ml of rye whiskey, 30ml of sweet vermouth and a dash of Angostura Bitters into a cocktail mixer with ice. Stir the combination with a large spoon. It’s better to stir, rather than shake a Manhattan, as shaking gives the cocktail an unattractive cloudy appearance. After stirring, strain into a martini glass, and garnish with a maraschino cherry.

Old Fashioned

This is definitely the oldest cocktail on this list. In fact, the first records of an Old Fashioned stretch as far back as 1806 in Hudson, New York. Over the years, the Old Fashioned has undergone many a nip and tuck. However, its spirit remains the same. Here is a delectable Old Fashioned recipe from the 1880s.

Dissolve a block of sugar with some water at the bottom of a short (or Old Fashioned) glass. Then, add 60ml of whiskey and a couple of dashes of Angostura bitters. Garnish the drink with a cherry and an orange slice skewered with a toothpick.

Rusty Nail

This sweet and honey-ish cocktail is thoroughly drinkable, but packs enough of a punch to be taken seriously. It consists of the simple marriage of Scotch and Drambuie. Drambuie, a liqueur made from whiskey, honey, herbs and spices, is the perfect antidote to the hot and biting edge of the Scotch. Mix 30ml of each ingredient in a cocktail shaker – it’s a good idea to shake the concoction vigorously. Then, pour the blend over ice in an Old Fashioned glass, and garnish with a twist.

If you’re a bartender, knowing how to mix up these timeless whiskey cocktails will definitely earn you a devoted following. Match some knowledge to your practical cocktail-making skills, and watch the tips pour in.