- To start, Hammett peels a grapefruit and adds two peels to a cocktail tumbler. Grapefruit, rather than lemon or orange, pairs better with the herbs he adds later. Hammett adds that grapefruit, rather than oranges, as they are easier to source locally in T
- Five to seven dashes of Angostura bitters are added to the grapefruit peels. Angostura bitters, with its closely guarded recipe, is a classic bitters choice for bartenders to bring balance to the drink.
- About one and a quarter part of tarragon-infused simple syrup is added next. Hammett sources the herbs from the local farm that supplies the produce to Swift's Attic. The tarragon highlights the spice in the Knob Creek® Rye Whiskey.
- He muddles the mixture in the tumbler to release the flavors, saying the muddling is based on "what feels right."
- The next step is adding two parts of ginger-infused Knob Creek® Rye Whiskey. To infuse the flavor, Hammett peels and muddles ginger and adds it to the rye. To fully infuse the flavor of the ginger into the spirit, he lets it steep for a full two weeks.
- Rather than adding water to cut the drink, he adds soda as it pairs nicely with the effervescence of the grapefruit and tarragon.
- Five pieces of cold-pressed ice go into the tumbler.
- Hammett then stirs the cocktail for 30 seconds.
- The completed New Fashioned is immediately poured into a double Old Fashioned glass.
We asked Swift Attic's bar manager Jeff Hammett to give us his personal take on this classic cocktail. Instead of the traditional bourbon, Hammett opts for Knob Creek® Rye Whiskey for its bold, full-flavored spice that is able to stand up to the interesting personal touches he adds to the drink. For his "New Fashioned," Hammett infuses the rye with ginger for two weeks to add an extra bite. But that isn't the only twist he adds to change up this classic cocktail.
Hammett focuses on unleashing the deep, earthy flavors of the Knob Creek® Rye Whiskey through infusion methods and use of high-quality ingredients. Other Austin bartenders, though, have different methods to bring out the unique flavors of the quality rye. Myria Free at Freedmen's goes fancy by using blood orange liqueur and Dolin Rouge to balance out the spice. In contrast, legendary mixologist and Peche owner Rob Pate chooses to uses Jerry Thomas bitters to bring out the spice of the rye.
But while each mixologist and bar has their own take on this immortal drink, there is one thing that remains unchanged and critical to the best Old Fashioned cocktails: the big, full flavor of Knob Creek® Whiskey.
This feature was produced in collaboration between Vox Creative and Eater. The Eater editorial staff was not involved in the creation or production of this content.
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Knob Creek® Straight Rye Whiskey, 45-60% Alc./Vol. ©2014 Knob Creek Distillery, Clermont, KY. All trademarks are the property of their respective owners.