Let’s just get this out of the way up front: whiskey is a damn fine drink on its own. Whether you like to drink whiskey neat or on the rocks is completely up to you. That being said, did you know that whiskey is also a king of classic cocktails? An Old Fashioned and Manhattan are cocktail staples that pack an unmistakably serious punch, but if you love yourself a good Whiskey Sour why not mix it up and try a new recipe? These six ultra-simple whiskey drinks can easily be made at home and require just three ingredients or less. So, no need to outfit your bar with a bunch of mixers, garnish or fancy tools. Unless you’re into that kind of thing. We won’t judge!
Pro tip: Bull Run Distilling is the perfect whiskey to pair with these simple and tasty cocktails!
Kentucky Mule Cocktail
Perfect for summer and winter, the Kentucky Mule Cocktail is refreshingly simple but the ginger beer adds a spicy kick. Use a sweeter whiskey or bourbon to offset the spice and you’ve got the perfect cocktail. As an added bonus: this recipe helps cure hangovers*.
- 2 oz. whiskey or bourbon
- 2 oz. ginger beer
- Juice of ½ of a lime
Directions: This recipe is best served in a copper mug. Add the bourbon/whiskey first and then top with ginger beer and add a splash of lime.
The whiskey highball cocktail is making a comeback! Once popular among our neighbors across the pond, this lemony version is smoother and would make an excellent everyday drink to add to your rotation.
- 2 oz. whiskey (any type works)
- 2-3 oz. ginger ale
- 3 lemon slices
Directions: Layer ice and lemon slices in a tall glass, pour in whiskey and top with ginger ale.
Spiked Southern Tea
Combine two southern classics for this “high falootin” drink that works equally well as a hot or iced beverage. Any whiskey would work but the sweetness and maple undertones of bourbon brings out the authenticity of the recipe. Whip up a batch of the iced version to enjoy during the holidays, summer parties or when you’re entertaining guests.
- 2 oz. bourbon
- 4 oz. sweet tea
- 1 tablespoon real maple syrup
Directions: The directions for this one are a no brainer. Add lemon for optional garnish.
Rye Whiskey Cider
If you’re looking to epitomize the fall season in a glass, this is it. Or toss it into a flask to enjoy at any of your favorite fall activities. Apple juice works, but the crisp apple flavor and natural sugars of apple cider tops the juice. Rye works best because the boldness adds depth to the drink and brings out the natural apple flavors.
- 2 oz. rye whiskey
- 3 oz. apple cider
- Optional pinch of cinnamon
Directions: Mix the two ingredients together and sip on it all day!
For the sake of mixing it up (see what we did there?), try this gin-based recipe and swap in whiskey instead. Play around with different types of whiskey and decide for yourself whether it tastes better with whiskey vs. gin.
- 1 oz. rye or bourbon
- 1 oz. Campari
- 1 oz. sweet vermouth
Directions: Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled coupe glass. If you use rye, garnish with a lemon twist and if you use bourbon, opt for orange instead.
Whiskey Sour Lemonade
An easy twist on the classic whiskey sour, this recipe uses lemonade in place of lemon juice and simple syrup. The tangy sweetness of the lemonade pairs well with the malted flavor of the whiskey. Add soda water for refreshing carbonation.
- 2 oz. whiskey
- 4 oz. lemonade
- 2 oz. soda water
Directions: Throw all of the ingredients in a mason jar or a pitcher and add lemon as a garnish.