There is just something really wonderful about a well made Manhattan.  It starts with good whiskey and ends with lovely, albeit expensive, dark cherries.  I know most bars use the florescent pink ones that all restaurants use for making Shirley temples, but please, go for broke on the “good” cherries.  Trust me on this… will make all the difference!  A quality sweet vermouth, a dash of nice bitters, and the above mentioned ingredients and you have the making of a well made Manhattan!!

As it gets closer to the winter months and the Holidays a Manhattan just seems to be the perfect cocktail. The first time I tried one and found out that I loved it was around Christmas time.  So my warm memories of this drink are centered around all that one loves about family, Christmas time,  and the winter months.  (Not that this isn’t just as delicious in the summer or anytime, because it is!!)

2 parts whiskey (I use Makers Mark)
1 part sweet vermouth
1-2 dashes bitters
dark maraschino cherries (plus a splash of the cherry syrup, totally optional)

Place all but cherries in a shaker with ice.  Pour into glass and garnish with the cherries.  You can strain and serve this in a martini glass, or have it on the rocks!  Your choice.  I prefer…….both! 🙂

p.s.  If you are really going for the most expensive dark cherries you can buy, those would be the “Luxardo” cherries. I’ve included a link below if you are curious about these.  Very interesting.  There are also more inexpensive look-a-likes to choose from.  Still a bit spendy but not as much as the “cadillac” ones mentioned above.  Those would be…..”Filthy”, “Rudy’s”, and a few others if you look around.  You’ll see. I never knew these kind of maraschino cherries existed until I had that first Manhattan. 🙂


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