The Wisconsin Old Fashioned Cocktail Recipe | Wine Enthusiast
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Wisconsin Old Fashioned recipe

The Wisconsin Old Fashioned Cocktail Recipe

In Wisconsin, the Old Fashioned cocktail swaps whiskey for a brandy-based mixture served one of three ways: sweet, sour or press. This recipe comes from Milwaukee’s oldest cocktail bar, Bryant’s Cocktail Lounge, founded in 1938.


½ ounce simple syrup
5 dashes Angostura bitters
4 ounces soda*
2 ounces brandy
Cherry and orange slice, for garnish


In 12-ounce footed Old Fashioned glass, add simple syrup, Angostura bitters and 1 ounce soda. Lightly stir, then add brandy. Fill glass with ice, and top with soda. Garnish with cherry and orange slice.

*For a “sweet” Old Fashioned, use a “white” soda (Sprite or 7-Up). For “sour,” use a grapefruit soda (Squirt or Graf’s 50-50). For a less sweet version, or a “press,” use seltzer water or half seltzer, half “white” soda.

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