Friday, December 24, 2010

Hello Old Friend

Just when all hope was lost, I turned to the title of my lovely little blog for a starting point: an old fashioned. Now some of you, who having drinking tendencies unlike an old man, may be wondering, what exactly is an old fashioned? I happened upon this delightful cocktail last Thursday, the first day I was back in Ptown, with my good friend Alex at the McMeniman's Ringler's Annex on Burnside. Being a porter and a few glasses of wine in for the night, I simply happened to pick this drink due to it having sugar in the description. Yes, that might not be the best selection criteria, but let's face it, I'm still four years old in many respects.

Having selected an amaretto old fashioned, and taking my first initial sips, I found I was very much pleased with the beverage. First off, while not my liquor of choice, amaretto is delicious for both its taste and the fact that it reminds me of my good friend and roommate, Sandy. Later though, I learned that a classic old fashioned is traditionally made with a bourbon, scotch or rye whiskey. What's not to like from those three choices?

An old fashioned is possibly the first drink to be called a cocktail. The earliest recipe for this drink, according to Wikipedia at least is:
The apparently earliest written recipe, from 1895, specifies the following: "Dissolve a small lump of sugar with a little water in a whiskey-glass; add two dashes Angostura bitters, a small piece ice, a piece lemon-peel, one jigger [1.5 ounces or 44 mL] whiskey. Mix with small bar-spoon and serve, leaving spoon in glass."[6]

My experience was actually quite similar to this, but with a bit more cherry flavor, which complimented the amaretto taste, and a hefty lump of sugar. Although, I do suspect there might have been a dash of curaƧao in the mix as well to highlight and bring out the orange flavor. Overall, this drink really appealed to my senses: part sugar driven, part hard alcohol enthusiast. I do need to return to the Annex to copy down the exact recipe. Thank goodness I'll be in Portland for over three more weeks.

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