Ultimate Guide: Crafting a Classic Old-Fashioned Whiskey Sour at Home

Ultimate Guide: Crafting a Classic Old-Fashioned Whiskey Sour at Home
Ultimate Guide: Crafting a Classic Old-Fashioned Whiskey Sour at Home
what's in an old fashioned whiskey sour

What’s in an Old Fashioned Whiskey Sour: A Classic Drink with a Twist


When it comes to classic cocktails, few can match the timeless appeal of an old fashioned whiskey sour. This iconic drink has been enjoyed by generations of whiskey lovers, and its popularity shows no signs of waning. In this article, we will take a closer look at what makes an old fashioned whiskey sour so special, exploring its ingredients, preparation, and the delightful twist that sets it apart from other whiskey cocktails.

The Ingredients


An old fashioned whiskey sour is made with just a handful of simple yet essential ingredients. Let’s break them down:

1. Whiskey:

The star of the show, whiskey is the primary component of this cocktail. Traditionally, bourbon whiskey is used for its rich and smooth flavor profile. However, you can experiment with other types of whiskey, such as rye or scotch, to create your own unique twist.

2. Fresh Lemon Juice:

The tangy and refreshing taste of fresh lemon juice adds a zing to the whiskey sour. Squeezing the juice from a real lemon is crucial to achieving the perfect balance of flavors.

3. Simple Syrup:

To balance out the tartness of the lemon juice, simple syrup is added. Made by dissolving equal parts of sugar and water, this sweetener enhances the overall taste of the cocktail.

4. Ice:

A generous amount of ice is essential to chill the drink and dilute it slightly. This helps mellow the flavors and ensures a smooth sipping experience.

5. Optional Garnishes:

While not essential, garnishes like a maraschino cherry or a lemon twist can add visual appeal and a touch of complexity to your whiskey sour.



Now that we know the key ingredients, let’s dive into the preparation process:

1. Gather Your Ingredients:

Before you start making your whiskey sour, make sure you have all the necessary ingredients and tools, including a cocktail shaker, a jigger for measuring, and a strainer.

2. Measure and Combine:

In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, measure 2 ounces of whiskey, ¾ ounce of fresh lemon juice, and ¾ ounce of simple syrup. Shake vigorously for about 15 seconds to blend the flavors and chill the drink.

3. Strain and Serve:

Using a strainer, pour the mixture into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice. If desired, garnish with a maraschino cherry or a lemon twist. Your old fashioned whiskey sour is now ready to be enjoyed!

A Twist on Tradition


While the classic old fashioned whiskey sour recipe is undeniably delicious, mixologists and whiskey enthusiasts have put their own spin on this beloved drink. Here are a few variations to consider:

1. Fruit Infusions:

Add a burst of fruity flavor by infusing your whiskey with berries, citrus peels, or even tropical fruits like pineapple. This infusion process can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, depending on your desired intensity.

2. Bitters and Liqueurs:

Experiment with different bitters and liqueurs to give your whiskey sour a unique twist. Angostura bitters, for example, can add complexity and depth to the flavor profile, while amaretto liqueur introduces a subtle nutty undertone.

3. Egg White Froth:

If you’re feeling adventurous, consider adding a velvety texture to your whiskey sour by incorporating a small amount of egg white. This frothy addition not only looks impressive but also adds a creamy mouthfeel to the cocktail.


Whether you prefer the classic rendition or enjoy experimenting with exciting variations, an old fashioned whiskey sour is a cocktail that never fails to deliver. With its balanced combination of whiskey, fresh lemon juice, and simple syrup, this timeless drink remains a favorite among whiskey connoisseurs and casual drinkers alike. So next time you’re in the mood for a sophisticated and refreshing libation, reach for the ingredients to make your own old fashioned whiskey sour and savor every sip.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Can I use any type of whiskey for a whiskey sour?

Yes, while bourbon is the traditional choice, you can experiment with different types of whiskey, such as rye or scotch, to suit your personal taste.

2. Can I use bottled lemon juice instead of fresh lemon juice?

Although fresh lemon juice is recommended for the best flavor, bottled lemon juice can be used in a pinch. However, be mindful of the quality and adjust the quantity accordingly.

3. How do I make simple syrup?

Simple syrup is made by dissolving equal parts of sugar and water. For example, you can mix one cup of sugar with one cup of water and heat it until the sugar completely dissolves. Let it cool before using it in your cocktail.

4. Can I make a non-alcoholic version of a whiskey sour?

Absolutely! You can substitute the whiskey with non-alcoholic alternatives like non-alcoholic whiskey or apple juice for a delicious mocktail version of the whiskey sour.

5. Can I make a large batch of whiskey sour in advance?

While it’s best to enjoy a whiskey sour immediately after it’s prepared, you can make a larger batch of the cocktail (without ice) and store it in a refrigerator for a few hours. Add ice and garnishes just before serving to ensure freshness.

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