The old-fashioned is widely regarded as the first cocktail. (It was originally called simply a “whiskey cocktail” until the Manhattan came along, which was new and hip. In return, the whiskey cocktail was seen as old-fashioned.) Substituting rum for whiskey in this cocktail makes for a fun and unexpected update to a classic. If you don’t like rum and you want to stay traditional, you can substitute a whiskey of your choice for the rum, and the results will be just as delicious.
- 2 ounces dark or barrel-aged rum
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- 2 drops aromatic bitters
- 2 drops orange bitters or muddled orange peel
- 1 teaspoon water
While the old-fashioned traditionally calls for a sugar cube, I don’t keep them around, and I’ve found that regular white sugar works just as well. Add the sugar, the bitters and the water to the bottom of a glass and mix well. Add the rum and some ice and stir. Garnish with an orange or lemon peel and enjoy.