The traditional Old Fashioned is another of the American Bartenders Association “unforgettable” cocktails, keeping company with classic drinks like the Whisky Sour and Planter’s Punch. It’s been around for a long time, and some even claim that the Old Fashioned was the very first official cocktail. It’s hard to mess with that kind of reputation, but a Maple Old Fashioned is something any Bourbon lover should try.
Bourbon is a variety of whisky, along with Scotch and Rye. In order to be a Bourbon, the mash from which the whisky is distilled must be at least 51% corn. Scotch whisky is mostly made from malted barley. There also can’t be any additives in the Bourbon mash, and it must be aged in a charred oak barrel.
Maple syrup is an all-natural product that is derived from the sap of Canadian maple trees. The trees are tapped in the spring, when the weather warms and the sap begins to run. It takes 40 pints of sap to make a single pint of maple syrup, the stuff that emerges after a lot of boiling and evaporation.
The maple syrup in this drink replaces the sugar or simple syrup you’ll find in a classic Old Fashioned recipe. It adds a rich, smooth taste to the Bourbon, unlike anything else you’ve ever used as a sweetener. If you want to keep it all Canadian, try using a Canadian Bourbon.
Here’s the recipe for a Maple Old Fashioned:
- 60ml Bourbon
- 15ml maple syrup
- Dash of aromatic bitters
- Dash of orange bitters
- Stir the maple syrup and bitters in a mixing glass
- Add ice
- Slowly add the Bourbon, stirring as you go to make sure it blends well with the syrup
- Rub an orange slice around the inside of a rocks glass
- Add ice
- Strain the Bourbon and syrup into the glass
- Garnish with a slice of orange
- Mixing glass
- Cocktail spoon
- Rocks glass