The classic Old Fashioned is whiskey with a bit of sugar, aromatic bitters, and dilution in some form, from a splash of either water or club soda. The earliest mention of an Old Fashioned–style drink is from 1806: Drinks writer Robert Simonson, author of The Old-Fashioned: The Story of the World’s First Classic Cocktail, calls this “the primordial cocktail,” older than either the martini or the Manhattan Drink.
What to buy: Finely milled superfine sugar dissolves rapidly, avoiding any risk of graininess in the finished drink.
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