Whiskey might be one of the best spirits to sip neat, but it really comes to life when mixed into a cocktail. Forget drowning the brown booze in a blast of syrupy soda gun cola—these drinks call for fresh, quality ingredients that elevate whiskey rather than mask it.
Here, the best whiskey cocktails everyone needs to master.
It’s called an Old Fashioned for a reason: This is the original whiskey cocktail. If your taste in drinks falls somewhere between neat and sweet, opt for an Old Fashioned. Skip the muddled cherries and oranges. A good slug of whiskey, just a few dashes of bitters, a sugar cube, a lemon twist and one big ice cube is all you need.
Drinking this cocktail is like sipping a cool, minty lemonade, made better with the addition of rye whiskey. Packed with crushed ice for a maximum chill, the Whiskey Smash tastes like a crisp, early spring day. Try swapping in different types of whiskeys or even muddling in seasonal fruit.
The little black dress of the cocktail world, the Manhattan has endured for over a century—it’s safe to say it will never go out of style. A few dashes of orange and Angostura bitters really make this simple combination of rye whiskey and sweet vermouth sing.
You can already expect a certain level of street cred if you order a Negroni at a bar, but if you order its moody fraternal twin—a mix of whiskey, Campari and sweet vermouth—and correctly pronounce it? You’ll really turn heads.
Made with hot coffee, Irish whiskey, sugar and freshly whipped heavy cream, Irish Coffee is equal parts sweet, creamy, eye-opening and boozy. It’s best made at home so you can customize it to your exact tastes.
This Big Easy classic is strong but sippable. It’s simple but complex, with its mix of rye whiskey, Peychaud’s bitters and an absinthe rinse. And though it’s served sans ice, it’s instantly cooling on a steamy day.
Forget an apple, a daily Hot Toddy is the real way to keep the doctor away. The soothing mix of hot water, fresh lemon, honey and whiskey is the ultimate restorative tipple. (Disclaimer: We at Supercall are not doctors, but rather wishful thinkers who really, really like whiskey).
The Rob Roy proves that scotch can, and should, be mixed into cocktails every bit as much as its bourbon and rye brethren. The late-19th century cocktail is essentially a blended scotch Manhattan, made with sweet vermouth and Angostura bitters. The spirit swap gives the cocktail more honeyed, heathered flavors with a subtle touch of smoke.
One of the rare cases where a mixology gimmick tastes as good as it looks, the ombré-hued New York Sour floats ruby red wine onto a Whiskey Sour base, which is made with rye, simple syrup and fresh lemon. The float is not only visually striking, but it gives the sour cocktail a rich roundness and delectably fruity finish.