Steady Yourself for the Black Friday Madness!

It’s Thanksgiving, and that means we are just a few short hours away from what is known as the Holiday or Christmas shopping season. For the next 30 days the Western world will go a little crazy looking for bargains and the hottest items to buy for themselves, loved ones, friends, and family. To steady yourself against the claustrophobic crush of shoppers at the mall, you might want to partake in a stiff adult libation. Something to steady your nerves and give you the strength you will need to fight for that big screen TV you must buy on Black Friday.

My drink of choice is Bourbon, and the classic Manhattan is always a go to staple for cooler months and the holiday season. Most bar tenders these days make their Manhattan with bourbon, but I prefer Rye. The recipe below calls for some choice ingredients, but the payoff is worth it. Especially when you have to fight the crowds, at the local mall.

The Manhattan is one of the essential classic cocktails. Usually made with Rye, many prefer it to be made with Bourbon, and some with other whiskeys like Southern Comfort (to sweet for my taste). Bitters are essential to the mix, and they come in many forms from the standard Angastora, to the hand crafted kind your local bartender might make. I tend to use Fea Brothers Ornage Bitters for a more rounded taste. Like all classic cocktails the Manhattan inspires great debates about the ingredients, and proportions needed to make the true cocktail. The recipe below is my favorite for a dry Manhattan made with premium ingredients for a smooth dry taste that is well balanced and full flavored.

Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled with ice Stir Well (Do not shake. Shaking will bruise the booze. No one wants bruised booze). Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with Italian brandy infused cherries or a flamed orange peel.

Flaming an orange peel is simple. Cut a 3/4 inch wide by inch and half long piece of orange peel. Take out a lighter, and while holding the peel, ignite the lighter against the peel in a quick move of the wrist. You just want to heat the peel and release it’s natural oils. It’s quick, as in quickly pass the flame across the surface one time.