Classic Manhattan

Following up on the “Classic Martini” thread, what is your formula for a classic Manhattan. Went to Dante in NYC last week and had the best Manhattan I’ve ever had. Sadly I was so enthralled that I didn’t ask what vermouth they used.

I’m generally a 3 parts Michter’s Straight Rye, one part Cocchi vermouth and a couple dashes of bitters. Luxardo cherries are a must and I like three. I also twist some orange rind over the glass to give it a little more aroma and include the rind in my drink.

Carpano Antica is a nice vermouth as well but it is very dark and heavy so I tend to use a little less of it.

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I use 2/0.6 ratio. Rye preferred (Rittenhouse typically) with Carpano Antica. Lots of other vermouths too but can’t get punt e mes locally. Need to address the lack of cherries.
Mostly Fee Bros bitters or the barrel aged. Used Hella aromatic bitters recently with good results.

I’ve been leaning a lot lately into ryes with a higher % of rye in the mashbill. My go-to rye currently (Pinhook single barrel) is 95% rye as opposed to the normal 60-75% in many ryes widely available.

Current go-to recipe:
2.5oz Pinhook Single Barrel Rye
0.5oz Carpano
0.5oz Cocchi
3 dashes Angostura
Amarena over Maraschino cherries [berserker.gif]

2 oz Sazerac 1 oz Carpano Antica 2 dash Aristoga bitters 2 Luxardos

The Manhattan is by far and away my favorite cocktail. I’ve experimented widely and this is my go to:

2oz Rittenhouse
.5oz Carpano Antica
.5oz Punt es Mes
3 dashes Miracle Mile Forbidden Bitters
2-4 griottines (depending on how hungry you are)

FWIW, anyone who uses bourbon in a Manhattan is just plain wrong. :wink:



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most manhattans (and other spirit-forward cocktails) aren’t properly stirred which leads to an unbalanced drink. the ingredients themselves are important, but the base whisky ABV is - i’ve found - to be the biggest impact. i also don’t think that a spirit labeled as rye or bourbon makes a difference - there are bourbons that come off as “rusty” and ryes that taste like maple syrup.

to my palate, working with a higher ABV (95-100%) works best but you really need to stir for 30+ seconds. it will seem excessive, but that’s how you get it balanced. but lower abvs can make a terrific manhattan as well, but i typically bump to 2.25-2.5 ounces.

Mine is usually:

2 oz Sazerac
.5 oz Cocchi
Couple dashes of Peychauds
Luxardo cherries
Orange peel if I have any

However, for the Holidays I’ve been making a very non-traditional “Manhattan”:

2 oz Sazerac
.5 oz St George Spiced Pear Liqueur
.5 oz Cherry Bounce (Northern Latitudes Distillery)
.25 oz maple syrup (got a cherry-maple from Traverse City, MI)

Were you at the W Village location or the one on MacDougall St?

Just looked at the Dante menu…this is what they list for their Manhattan:

woodford rye. woodford bourbon. cocci torino. mancino chinato. nocino. chocolate bitters

No idea of the proportions.

I’d be fascinated to try it…the nocino and chocolate bitters sounds odd to me, but I can see how it would work.

Always Rye. Always 90pf or stronger. But as Yaacov said not all ryes are created equal. I prefer drier, spicier ones. Rittenhouse and Sazerac are my go to ryes for cocktails.
I am not a fan of Carpano Antica. Too sweet. I will cycle through whatever I’ve got on hand for vermouth, but usually Montanaro, Cocchi or Dolin.
I cycle through different bitters as well but Dashfire Old Fashioned or barrel aged Old Fashioned are the go to’s.

West Village. Really love the vibe and drinks there. The Brooklyn cocktail there is also wonderful.

I actually did not order their signature for that reason and went with a traditional Manhattan and subbed in the Michters.

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I’ve used Nocino before. The walnut gives the drink, without mastering the obvious, a nutty character. But it’s an addition and not a substitute to an ingredient.

Just a PSA to always give your best.

My classic is non-traditional. I always start from a jar of Merry Maraschino Cherries that has had half of the juice replaced by bourbon. One cherry and another teaspoon of the bourbon/juice into the glass, followed by a 3:1 shaken mix of Woodford Reserve and Dolin Rouge. Stir well with the cherry and juice. No bitters. Very addictive. Cheers!

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1.5 oz Rye (currently a Barrel 7 year cask strength)
0.5 oz Weller 107
.75 Cocchi
2 dashes angostura
all stirred
1 Luxardo cherry with a little bit of the syrup at the bottom of the glass

I am a huge fan of Forbidden Bitters in my manhattans.

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Manhattans- my new favorite thing. And this from a Burgundy nerd… [wink.gif]

-2 parts Rye whiskey, higher alcohol; cask strength or bottled in bond.
-3/4 part Spanish vermouth- I favor Gonzalo Byass La Copa Rojo
-2 dashes Angostura bitters
-2 cherries- your choice
On ice, till the bite of the whisky hits your happy place, then remove

For me, this works fine with other overproof bourbons, including wheated mashbills (heresy, I know…) but the spice of the rye wins…

Old Overholt BiB, the non-chill filtered that is being slowly rolled out, got a shout out from Wondrich. I ran out and bought 4 bottles. Manhattans tomorrow night in honor of my FIL. These will be stirred and served up, not on the rocks. Unlike Steve’s hybrid. [scratch.gif]

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