Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Proper Old Fashioned

Martin Doudoroff has launched a much-needed educational website entitled Old Fashioned 101 aimed to correct the longstanding adulteration of the classic Old Fashioned.

So what is an Old Fashioned, anyway? Not that convoluted concoction of whiskey with a bunch of fruit mashed up in it.

It might be easiest to start with what an Old Fashioned is not.

Here's Doudoroff's list:

  • There is no slice of orange in an Old Fashioned.
  • There is no cherry in an Old Fashioned.
  • You do not mash up fruit of any kind in an Old Fashioned.
  • There is no seltzer, soda water, ginger ale, or lemon soda in an Old Fashioned.
  • There is no vermouth of any kind in an Old Fashioned.
  • There is no beer in an Old Fashioned.
  • There is no lemon juice, lime juice, orange juice or sour mix in an Old Fashioned.
  • There are no frothing agents in an Old Fashioned.
  • You do not shake an Old Fashioned.
Now, as to what it is . . . well, check out Old Fashioned 101.  In essence though, the original Old Fashioned is actually the recipe for the original cocktail, as it was made back in the beginning of the 19th century (when it was made most frequently with brandy, not whiskey).  By the turn of the 20th century, cocktail had taken on an expanded meaning of a mixed liquor drink of any sort.  So, an "old fashioned" cocktail was one made the old original way.

I've been drinking my brown liquor following the "old fashioned" cocktail formula for several months now, and I highly recommended it.  Kudos to Doudoroff for establishing his  essential prerequisite course.


Sheppy said...

Nice post! It sure is nice to see real cocktail recipes enter our world of often mismade traditional drinks. Please, for my sake, opine on the mint julep soon. I could use another vigilante with me on the proper composition of "the perfect cocktail"...

Robert said...

Thanks, Sheppy. I'll try to weigh in as soon as I can on the "proper" mint julep--I've got a ton of good material about its history.

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