Old Fashioned

Created in the 1880’s the Old Fashioned contains bourbon, sugar, bitters and a splash of water or soda water. It’s the most controversial drink on the list in its variations. The alcohol is always whiskey but it can be either bourbon or rye. Rye is an old fashioned whiskey but Old Fashioneds were created in Kentucky, where bourbon is from. So really the alcohol used is a question of personal preference. Another point of contention is whether or not to muddle in the fruits the drink is usually garnished with.  This is the cocktail of choice for Don Draper.

Whiskey Sour

This is your grandfather’s drink. Bourbon, lemon juice, sugar.  Cocktail historian David Wondrich says that from the 1860’s to the 1960’s this was the most popular cocktail in the USA.  We ended the Civil War and won two World Wars on Whiskey Sours.

7 and 7

This is your dad’s drink. A lot of the drinks on this list used to be more popular. These seemed to have tailed off in popularity in the 80’s. Whiskey is a weird thing to mix with 7 Up. I drink 7 Up with orange vodka. I’m pretty tough though.

Jack and Coke

This is your drink. It’s the most popular whiskey cocktail today. It doesn’t get more basic. Whiskey and cola. I drink them in pairs. One for my left hand and one for my right. Jack Daniels and Jim Beam have both sold their whiskeys premixed with cola in a can.

Mint Julep

The mint julep is the drink of the Super Bowl of horse races, The Kentucky Derby.  Almost 120,000 of them are served every year at the Derby. A mint julep contains; mint, bourbon and sugar over a ton of ice. Mint Juleps are frequently associated with the south and were the drink for literary icon William Faulkner.


The time of its invention is unclear but its location is not. It’s a New York drink created sometime in either the 1860’s or 1870’s. It’s made with rye or Canadian whisky, vermouth and bitters and served in a cocktail glass. Manhattans pop up in a lot of Jack Kerouac’s writings so it’s possible this was the drink for him.

Rob Roy

It’s the same drink as a Manhattan only the whisky used must be Scotch. Rob Roy, the real person, was “the Scottish Robin Hood.” They are usually served in cocktail glasses but it’s not impossible to see one poured in something different, unlike a Manhattan which is always to be served in a cocktail glass. Also unlike a Manhattan the origin of this is clear. It was created at the Waldorf hotel in New York City in 1894.

Rusty Nail

Drambuie and Scotch. What the hell is Drambuie? First thought is that it’s Dracula ejaculate. I don’t know why. I just look at the word and that’s what comes. It’s actually a Scotch whisky liqueur.  Scotch with scotch. It’s gold and tastes strongly of spiced honey. So it’s really more like my ejaculate than Dracula’s.