The Art of Barrel-Aged Manhattans

If you are a fan of classic , then you must have heard about the Manhattan. This iconic drink, made with , sweet , and bitters, has been around for over a century and remains a favorite of many cocktail enthusiasts. However, if you want to take your Manhattan game to the next level, you should try barrel aging it.

Barrel aging a cocktail is a process that involves mixing the ingredients and then aging them in a wooden barrel for a certain period of time. During this time, the flavors of the ingredients meld together, and the wood imparts its own unique character to the drink. The end result is a cocktail that is smoother, more complex, and simply delicious.

To make a barrel aged Manhattan, you will need a 5-liter barrel, whiskey, sweet vermouth, bitters, and some patience. The process is relatively simple: mix the ingredients togther and pour them into the barrel. Then, seal the barrel with a cork and let it age for 28 to 60 days. During this time, you should give the barrel a quarter turn each week to ensure that the ingredients are mixing properly.

Once the aging process is complete, you can test the cocktail by removing the cork and pouring it directly from the barrel into a cocktail shaker. The result is a cocktail that is perfectly balanced, with the flavors of the whiskey, vermouth, and bitters blending seamlessly together.

The origins of the Manhattan are somewhat murky, but it is generally believed that the drink was invented in the late 1800s at the Manhattan Club in New York City. It quickly became popular and has remained a staple of cocktail culture ever since.

Barrel aging a Manhattan is a great way to add a new twist to this classic drink. The wood imparts a unique flavor to the cocktail, and the aging process mellows out the harshness of the whiskey, resulting in a drink that is smoother and more refined.

If you are a fan of classic cocktails and want to try something new, you should definitely give barrel aged Manhattan a try. With just a few simple ingredients and some patience, you can create a drink that is sure to impress. So, get yourself a barrel and start aging your cocktails today!

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How Long Should a Manhattan Be Barrel-Aged?

When barrel aging a Manhattan, it is recommended to age the cocktail for a minimum of 28 days. However, it is important to note that the aging process should not exceed 60 days. This is because over-aging can result in a loss of flavor and balance in the cocktail. It is important to monitor the aging process and taste the cocktail periodically to ensure it reaches the desired level of aging without going too far.

Barrel Aging Manhattans

Barrel aging Manhattans is a process that requires some patience and attention to detail. To begin, you will need a small oak barrel, preferably one that has been charred on the inside. The barrel should be clean and free of any residue or debris.

Once you have your barrel, you can begin to prepare your Manhattan mixture. You will need , Vermouth, and bitters. Combine these ingredients in a mixing glass and stir well.

Next, pour the mixture into the barrel and seal it with a cork. It is important to give the barrel a 1/4 turn each week to ensure that the liquid inside is properly aged. You should alow the mixture to age for 6-8 weeks.

When it is time to test your Manhattan, remove the cork from the top of the barrel and allow the liquid to flow. You can then fill a cocktail shaker straight from the barrel and shake well. Strain the mixture into a chilled glass and enjoy your perfectly aged Manhattan.

The process of barrel aging Manhattans involves preparing the mixture of Bourbon, Vermouth, and bitters, pouring it into a small oak barrel, sealing it with a cork, and allowing it to age for 6-8 weeks while giving the barrel a 1/4 turn each week. When ready to enjoy, remove the cork, fill a cocktail shaker, shake, strain, and savor the perfectly aged Manhattan.

Age of a Manhattan Cocktail

The Manhattan cocktail is believed to have originated in the early 1880s, making it over 140 years old. The recipe is commonly attributed to Dr. Iain Marshall, who is said to have created it for a party hosted by Lady Randolph Churchill, the mother of Winston Churchill. The party was allegedly held at the Manhattan Club in New York City, which is where the drink is said to have gotten its name. While the exact origins of the Manhattan may be debated, it is widely regarded as a classic cocktail and remains a popular drink to this day.


Barrel aged Manhattan is a delicious and sophisticated cocktail that takes time and patience to perfect. This classic cocktail is made by mixing together high-quality ingredients and aging them in a barrel for several weeks. The aging process alows the flavors to blend together and mellow out, resulting in a smooth and complex drink. The addition of Bourbon, Vermouth and bitters adds depth and complexity to the cocktail, making it a favorite among cocktail enthusiasts. The history and origin of the Manhattan cocktail adds a layer of intrigue and mystique to the drink, making it a must-try for anyone interested in classic cocktails. Whether you're a seasoned bartender or a home mixologist, barrel aged Manhattan is a cocktail that is sure to impress.

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Thomas Ashford

Thomas Ashford is a highly educated brewer with years of experience in the industry. He has a Bachelor Degree in Chemistry and a Master Degree in Brewing Science. He is also BJCP Certified Beer Judge. Tom has worked hard to become one of the most experienced brewers in the industry. He has experience monitoring brewhouse and cellaring operations, coordinating brewhouse projects, and optimizing brewery operations for maximum efficiency. He is also familiar mixology and an experienced sommelier. Tom is an expert organizer of beer festivals, wine tastings, and brewery tours.