Big Apple Manhattan

Big Apple Manhattan

It seems somehow correct that rye whiskey would serve as the traditional foundation for a “Manhattan”.   A good rye whiskey is solid yet brash,  fortifying yet with the complexity of a good wine.  The intensity of a good rye whiskey screams to be noticed.     Just like a lot of New Yorkers.

I am nearly certain that whomever first coined the phrase “give me a good, stiff drink” was referring to a shot of rye whiskey.   But if you mix that shot of rye with sweet vermouth and a dash of bitters that bracing slap across the face becomes a relaxing, meditative massage.  It becomes a Manhattan.

Nobody will argue that this is one fine cocktail but there is room for variety in its execution — much like the art of massage itself.  The so-called purists will never approve of Manhattans made with bourbon, its sweeter and more rounded cousin, but these types would also never think twice about perverting the drink with a goopy maraschino cherry.  (A garnish I never quite believed belonged in there anyway.)

Big Apple Manhattan

This version rounds the bourbon out even further with a knock of apple brandy’s caramel, apples and spice notes and it skips the maraschino cherry altogether earning it a few bonus points with me.  I can’t tell you why but I seem to enjoy this drink when it is shaken and not stirred.  HIghly irregular.  But so are some New Yorkers.  And I like ’em that way.


The "Big Apple" Manhattan

This is what you will need:

  • 2 ounces good Bourbon
  • 1 ounce Laird’s Applejack
  • 1 ounce sweet vermouth
  • 2 splashes bitters
  • 1 apple slice for garnish

This is how you make it:

  1. Add the bourbon, Applejack, vermouth and bitters to a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
  2. Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled martini glass.
  3. Garnish with the apple slice.

About Trevor Kensey

To be truthful, I don't know what “Sis. Boom. [blog!]" means either. The name implies something explosive just happened I suppose I would like it if each post would make made a small 'boom' in your day or at least a fizzle. Even though a recipe is included with every post I have a hard time calling this a "food blog" or even myself a "food blogger".

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  1. Sounds delicious

  2. Applejack is spot on as far as I am concerned! As far as garnishes, I sometimes think bartenders just use any fruit they can get their hands on-regardless of taste. Nice refresher here.

  3. Looks great!

  4. I am sure by “New Yorkers” you are referring to denizens of the five boroughs. Irregular or not, you just have to love them…

    Instead of a wild punch, I like to think of “Upstaters” as being more like a good hard apple cider – you don’t know what hit you until you’re already three sheets to the wind 🙂

    Beautiful drink.

  5. It sounds delicious and your description is incredible!

  6. Hi, Trevor!

    I’ve given you the “Versatile Blogger Award!” Please stop by my blog to “Pick it up.”


  7. You’re so right, Trevor! You know they say, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery,” but I’ve always thought that was a bunch of BS! I thought the emblem looked familiar, but didn’t immediately associate it with your blog – but now that you point out the obvious, it does absolutely resemble your style.

    All the more reason you deserve it!
    Until FFWD!

  8. Wow…If I could drink straight liquor without being knocked on my A#@…I would definitely give this drink a try! I do like Applejack! Nice post!

  9. Anonymous says:

    This highly irregular New Yorker looks forward to trying your concoction this weekend.


  10. Yum! I love martinis. I haven’t tried on like this. I’m intrigued now.

  11. We are soo much alike in soo many ways. GREG

  12. Anonymous says:

    Adding AppleJack sounds great. Before you completely pass on the cherries thing, have you tried Luxardo Gourmet Marischino Cherries? It is not the ball of wax that one normally thinks of, rather it is basically as close as you can get to putting an actual cherry in the drink…they are fantastic. Try it sometime when you are in the mood for a “sweeter” Manhattan. J.B.