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The Manhattan

Harking back to New York in the 1870s, the Manhattan is unquestionably a classic cocktail. Easy to make and delicious. Not too sweet and not too bitter, the Manhattan isn’t as controversial as some other cocktails. It certainly has less of a love/hate reputation than the negroni.

Rye whisky or bourbon is required for this recipe. If you substitute whisky for bourbon, thats fine. It’s just called a Rob Roy rather than a Manhattan.

Confusingly if you over hear someone ordering a ‘Perfect Manhattan’ then they’re ordering a different drink. It’s not a Manhattan made so well that it’s ‘perfect’. It’s a different recipe that also uses dry Vermouth along with sweet Vermouth, I’ll post a recipe of it soon.


The ingredients always stay the same, but some people use different ratios. I stick to the 2-1-2 ratio, which is also the area code for Manhattan.

Combine the following in a mixing glass with ice.

  • Two measures rye whisky (50ml)
  • One measure Sweet Vermouth (25ml)
  • Two dashes of bitters. Angosturas is fine.

Strain into a chilled coup. Garnish with a preserved cherry.

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