7 Classic Manly Cocktails If you're not sure what to order at the bar, try one of these classics

With all of the distractions in the world today, most of all us could use a good, stiff drink to wind down after a long day. The GentleManual would like to be your virtual tour guide to the classiest concoctions that have so eloquently graced our favorite watering holes since time immemorial.

Whether or not these truly are ‘the manliest’ cocktails, there is one thing we’re sure of— they’re all pretty damn good.

Dirty Martini

6 fluid oz of Vodka

1 dash of dry Vermouth

1 oz of Olive Juice

3 Green Olives

Pour these ingredients into a shaker, give a few generous shakes, and pour into a Martini glass. Simple, elegant, and timeless. Just be sure to use a higher-end Vodka. You don’t want to dress your Martini down with cheap Vodka. Also, don’t shake your shaker too aggressively. You risk watering it down. Even James Bond would agree…shaken…but not too much.

Classic Manhattan

2 oz of Rye Whiskey

1/2 oz of sweet Vermouth

2-3 dashes of Angostura Bitters

Maraschino Cherry for garnish

Pour your ingredients into your mixing glass or shaker. Stir/Shake. Strain. Add cherry. Boom. Done. Traditionally this is served in a Martini glass, but any glass will do. You can go the Don Draper way on Mad Men and use and Old Fashioned glass. Either way, you’re still having the pleasure of enjoying the oldest known cocktails. There are several different variations of this, but this recipe is all you need.


1 1/2 oz of Cognac (or Bourbon)

1 oz of Triple Sec

1/2 oz of Lemon Juice

Sugar rim (optional)

You guessed it. Ingredients in a shaker. Shake generously on this one. If you water the drink down with ice shards, it will off-set the tartness of the lemon juice slightly. It might seem unmanly for the sugar on the rim, but it’s a great addition to the drink and it lets the women know how sweet you are (wink, wink). This cocktail was born around WWI and has remained a staple in classy establishments since then.

Old Fashioned

2 oz of Bourbon (or Rye Whiskey)

2 dashes of Angostura Bitters

1 splash of water (or club soda)

1 tbsp of sugar

1 Maraschino Cherry

1 Orange Wedge

Pour your sugar, water, and bitters in. Place your cherry and orange wedge. Use a muddler or the back of a spoon to work the ingredients into a paste. Once this is done, pour your bourbon and use a few ice cubes. Stir. Wallah. Old Fashioned ready for consumption. Among cocktail aficionados, there will be an argument almost every time about the appropriate way to make these. My suggestion, play around and see what you like best. Traditional drink recipes are made to be amended.

Rusty Nail

1 1/2 oz of Scotch

1/2 oz of Drambuie

1 twist lemon peel

Simple, simple, simple. Fill Old Fashioned glass to the top with ice. Pour Scotch and Drambuie. Stir. Drop lemon peel in. Enjoy. This delectable treat is described as a great after dinner drink or around the Holidays. The honey flavor of the Drambuie paired with the Scotch gives a warm feeling and some prefer it with no ice (neat) to best utilize this wonderful combo.

Traditional Absinthe

2 oz of Absinthe

6 oz of cold water

1-2 sugar cubes

1 slotted spoon

Pour your Absinthe in the glass.Place your spoon and sugar cube as pictured. Then pour your water over the spoon and sugar. You’ll begin to see a clouded reaction known as the ‘louche’. Since Absinthe was banned in 1915, then the ban was lifted in 2007, it has been making a gradual comeback. It typically has a strong licorice flavor, but that’s what the sugar is for. The herbs it is distilled with give a slightly different feeling than the run-of-the-mill alcohol.


1 1/2 oz of Scotch (or Bourbon)

3/4 of Amaretto Almond Liqueur

Pour both the Scotch and Amaretto over ice into an old fashioned glass. Stir slightly. Then take a sip and channel your inner Marlon Brando. This drink is certainly not for amateurs. This drink, like all others, can be changed with no ice or extra garnish of cherry or lemon wedge. Personally, it seems pretty perfect as is. But add your own flair accordingly. Hell, even give it another name if you’d like.