You would expect that a ubiquitous cocktail with as respected and established a name as an “Old Fashioned” would be a bit more predictable. Rather, it’s as changeable and personal as the preparer or the one who orders it.
What is agreed upon is the tale of the invention at the Pendennis Club in Louisville, Ky., sometime around the beginning of the 20th century. While many a bartender since then has placed his or her own signature on the Old Fashioned, it was created for a Kentucky distiller named Colonel Pepper, so we have to side with Kentucky Bourbon as the main ingredient over such impostors as Canadian Blended Whiskey.
For New Orleans, that recipe affirmation takes us to Dickie Brennan’s Bourbon House, home of the New Orleans Bourbon Society and their version known as a “New Fashioned.”
A note here: muddling is a key activity to making a great “New Fashioned.” Do not employ your best crystal.
The New Fashioned
1 oz. Knob Creek Kentucky Bourbon, muddled with seasonal fruits, citrus and, if preferred, berries
1 oz. Simple syrup
A splash of bitters
Garnish with same type of fruit