5 Classic Whiskey Cocktail Recipes from Boston Bartenders
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Improved Contrarian · Ivory Pearl
It’s never not a good time to drink whiskey, but the shift to cooler weather in particular has us thinking about brown spirits and the staple recipes that employ them. From faithful recreations to house variants, these twists on classic whiskey cocktail recipes from Boston-area bartenders are as cozy as a crackling fireplace.
The name of this century-old cocktail recipe is a nod to its use of Irish whiskey and herbaceous, high-proof Green Chartreuse (the recipe features sweet vermouth, too). This take from Drink tilts the ratio even further in the direction of Irish whiskey, so be warned: You may want to eat something first. While Drink’s iteration relies on Glendalough Double Barrel, you can substitute it for other whiskeys from the Emerald Isle.
Boston Harbor Distillery’s Ward 16 is a sequel of sorts to the Ward 8, a 19th-century cocktail made with rye, grenadine, orange, and lemon. This newer iteration of the local classic adds lime juice and uses grenadine as a float for greater visual effect. Fun fact: Ward 8 is said to have been invented at Locke-Ober, a long-standing restaurant that once occupied Yvonne’s Downtown Crossing space.
The Law of Octaves
Sure, the name is different, but La Brasa’s The Law of Octaves is a Manhattan at heart. Rather than using sweet vermouth to round out rye, this variant calls on the rhubarb-based amaro Zucca Rabarbaro. It also employs 18.21 Prohibition Aromatic Bitters, which add an extra cinnamon and clove kick.
Nothing about this recipe from The Smoke Shop BBQ is revolutionary. It’s the little things—like adding crushed ice gradually to account for dilution or garnishing with powdered sugar—that make this Mint Julep sensational. Great for Derby Day or any old Saturday.
We miss Eastern Standard, and we miss its Whiskey Smash. Raise a glass to the Kenmore Square great by recreating this signature cocktail, which requires little more than muddling together simple syrup, mint, and lemon before shaking with whiskey and ice. While the recipe calls for bourbon, you have our permission to try it with rye, too.