Is it still a Manhattan when there is no bourbon? no cherry? Still the essence is there, the oak aged brandy, the carpano antica sweet vermouth, a dash of bitters. A brandy cocktail worth repeating.
I keep one fancy vermouth and one inexpensive vermouth (sweet and dry) on hand because it makes a difference sometimes. And sometimes it doesn’t.
Punch magazine has a nice article outlining several vermouths of all styles. I’m just happy that there are choices.
Speaking of choices, there are a lot of bitters out there now too. I went with the bitter housewife cardamom bitters.
For the brandy I opted for Copper & Kings american brandy which is aged in bourbon barrels (as close to bourbon as I get)
I love mason jars! I make my whipped cream (which is actually shaked cream) in them and I’ve taken to mixing drinks because often with cocktails I don’t want them all at once or, like today, I’m doing the dry January thing so I must save the brandy for the non abstainer. Simple dump the ice, throw the cocktails- garnish and all- back into the mason jar. seal and put in the freezer. Frosty delicious brandy manhattan cocktails on demand.
I only have a few hard and fast rules for manhattans, you can read about them in this classic manhattan post.
This last year I made my own boozy cherries- you, too, can do!
Brandy Manhattan Cocktail
- 4 ounces brandy mid grade
- 2 ounces sweet vermouth see above
- 2-4 dashes bitters cardamom or orange
- 1 slice blood orange for garnish (can sub a cherry)
- fill a pint glass or mason jar with ice
- add all ingredients and stir until well chilled
- strain into martini glasses
- garnish with a slice of blood orange or a cherry
- can be stored in the freezer indefinitely (or three days with garnish in there too)