2 oz. Rye Whiskey
1 oz. Sweet Vermouth (red)
2 dashes of bitters
1 Maraschino cherry (garnish)
Start by filling up a martini/cocktail glass with ice to "chill" the glass, always do this first. Next fill a mixing glass about half way with clean, clear, cubed ice. Add your whiskey, vermouth, then bitters. Stir slowly until the drink is chilled thoroughly. Strain into chilled cocktail glass and serve with a maraschino cherry dropped in as garnish.
Note: The use of clean cubed ice is vital for the stirring process. When stirring any cocktail such as this try to use your bar spoon to simply move the ice around in the glass without cracking or breaking the cubes. It takes some practice but if you can stir a drink without making any noise the end result will be a much cleaner and clearer product. You can substitute Bourbon for the whiskey if you desire it, if you do I suggest using orange bitters instead of Angostura. Another tip is to chill your vermouth in the refrigerator a couple of hours before mixing with it. For some reason, cold vermouth is better than room temperature, or so my guests have mentioned.
That is until I happened to step into a very beautiful and storied tavern in Bristol, Rhode Island, named the DeWolf.
However, as you know, I live in the backwoods of Maine, well not the backwoods really, as I do have neighbors that, for the most part, have managed to marry outside of their immediate families. So not so rustic as to be eating road kill and "what not", but it’s still pretty far away from the cocktail culture of my youth New York City. Therefore, it is more the rule than the exception that I have to mix my own libations if I desire something refined as this old classic.
For a refined, dignified, and socially acceptable, before dinner aperitif you cannot go wrong by mixing a few of these up for your guests.