When the holiday draw for food preparation circulates to me I’m often bestowed the all-important duty of appetizers and cocktails – a badge I wear with honor. This year’s holiday centerpiece was a pork tenderloin so I thought a whiskey cocktail would complement the meal.
Now I could buy a bottle of my favorite whiskey and call it a day but where’s the fun in that?
Also, given the probability of even fifty-percent of the dinner’s guest drinking whiskey neat was somewhere close to zero I found it prudent to put forth a bit of creativity.
Enter the Manhattan. Classic, bold, refined. Like all good things that touch the palate, quality ingredients are essential.
In a stainless steel pitcher I like to add a few cubes of ice and dash a spirited quantity of Angostura orange bitters on top. Next I add two ounces of Bulleit Rye Whiskey – truly, for the price, it can’t be beat! After that, an ounce of Carpano Antica vermouth joins the pool.
In a rocks glass, because martini glasses are nothing but a hassle and a liability, I place two of the world’s best (and quite possibly the most expensive) maraschino cherries from Luxardo. For fun, and for the taste beds, I add a little drizzle of the cherry syrup on top.
Once the bitters, rye and vermouth have been stirred and thus, chilled, I gently pour the sweet concoction into the rocks glass so as not to disturb the cherries nor the syrup.
All that's left to do is enjoy… one, two or save yourself, three at a time.