We'll jump into some historical goodness on the smooth-as-heck Manhattan cocktail recipe in a second, but first, here are a few other classic whiskey cocktails we think you'll enjoy: the Old Fashioned
, the Whiskey Sour
, the Irish Coffee
, the Boulevardier
, and the Flaming 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse.
OK, now onto the history of the Manhattan, which, like so many other cocktails’ histories, is ambiguous as heck. Most sources point toward the drink being invented in the 1870s at the Manhattan Club in New York, but that’s probably the only truthful part of the whole story. As legend would have it, the Manhattan mixed drink recipe was created by Dr. Iain Marshall for a banquet hosted by Jennie Jerome — a.k.a. Lady Randolph Churchill a.k.a. mother of Winston Churchill. Supposedly Churchill’s mom was at the Manhattan Club to honor presidential candidate Samuel J. Tilden. The only problem is, as the Manhattan cocktail Wiki
points out, “Lady Randolph was in France at the time and pregnant, so the story is likely a fiction.” There is another origin story for the Manhattan cocktail as well, which says that the classic whiskey cocktail was invented in the 1860s by a man nicknamed “Black” who tended bar on Houston Street in Manhattan. Both the Manhattan cocktail recipe Wiki and TASTE Cocktails Magazine
refer to this narrative, but we couldn't find any good primary sources supporting it. Regardless of the exact story behind the invention of the Manhattan cocktail, it was definitely, y’know, first made somewhere in Manhattan. So you can take that little piece of Manhattan cocktail trivia knowledge to the bank. Fun Manhattan cocktail trivia side note: TASTE Cocktails points out that “People from the small North Frisian island of Fohr are passionate about the Manhattan cocktail and you will find that it is on the menu of most bars and restaurants.” Where is North Frisian? In Germany!
2 oz. (60ml) Whiskey
3/4 oz. (22ml) Sweet Red Vermouth
Dash Angostura Bitters
1. Fill serving glass with ice to chill and set aside.
2. In an ice filled glass combine whiskey, sweet red vermouth and angostura bitters. Stir to mix.
3. Discard ice from serving glass and drop cherry into base of glass.
4. Strain mix into glass.