Sit down at any bar in America and ask for an Old Fashioned. What you will most likely end up with is something along the lines of whisky, bitters, sugar, ice, and citrus garnish. While stylistically, this drink is very similar to the “first” Old Fashioneds being served in the early 18th century, the history of this cocktail is anything but simple.
The first time the Old Fashioned is mentioned can be found in a 1806 article which mentions a mysterious cocktail containg spirits, water, bitters, and sugar. Naturally, this cocktail began to take upon many different expressions, some choosing gin and rum instead of whisky. By the end of the century, the Old Fashioned was commonly the cocktail of choice for a curious experiment. Liquors such as Curaçao and Absinthe were added to even further change what the Old Fashioned could be. Though the peripheral aspects of the old Fashioned continued to be fluid, the essential nature of the cocktail persisted.
Today the Old Fashioned is still being experimented and tested with different ingredients to create something both entirely new and classic. Its oxymoronic essence has allowed the “Old” Fashioned to evolve and take upon various expressions.
At Utopian, we have decided to take a stab at creating our own version of the Old Fashioned using our Cold Brew Blend. The Cold Brew will stand in place of the alcohol, and we have decided to add another unique twist by creating a spiced simple syrup to act as the sweetening agent.
Spiced Simple Syrup Recipe:
1 Cup Water
1 Cup Brown Sugar
2-3 Full Cloves
2 Teaspoon Cinnamon
5 or so Cardamom Pods (Smashed)
(If not using bitters, I suggest adding Star Anise to add some more depth to the overall flavor)
Add these ingredients in a pot and bring to a boil and immediately remove from heat. I then store this for a few days before filtering and using. The longer the ingredients sit together the more potent the flavors become!
Spiced Old Fashioned:
Rocks Glass with Ice
4-5 oz Cold Brew
approx. 1/2 oz Spiced Simple Syrup
2 dashes Angotsura Bitters
Garnish with Citrus Peel