Ultimate Old Fashioned

The Old Fashioned is the archetypal American whiskey cocktail, created in the late 17th century as a way to smooth out some of the harsher notes found in pre-prohibition whiskeys. As the cocktail spread around the world, the recipe changed, becoming a way of accentuating the flavours of the spirit.

When using a high quality single malt whisky such as The Glenlivet 12 Year Old, the key is to use the finest possible ingredients, the freshest oranges and a blend of bitters designed specifically to bring out the very best of the whisky. The strong and warming properties make this scotch old fashioned the perfect cocktail to make at home.



Ingredients Unit
The Glenlivet 12 Year Old
50 ml
Unrefined Cane Sugar
5 g
Perfect Bitters Blend
2 dashes


  1. Add the unrefined caster sugar into the glass and add a little whisky and ice.
  2. Stir slowly to dissolve the sugar for about half a minute, add a little more whisky and the bitters and continue to stir for another minute.
  3. Add the remaining whisky and stir, taste for balance and adjust if necessary.
  4. Garnish with a large orange twist expressed over the surface of the drink.


  1. Mix two parts of Angostura bitters with single parts of Bob’s Bitters Orange and Mandarin, Fee Brother’s Plum and Peychaud’s bitters.
  2. Leave to marry for at least a couple of hours.

Feel free to experiment with your own version of perfect bitters!

Top tip: put your spin on a classic cocktail with our Old Fashioned variations.

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How to peel orange for your Old Fashioned

To garnish an Old Fashioned, you’ll need a small portion of orange peel. Whilst you can carefully use a knife, bartenders recommend using a Y shaped peeler. Simply shave it from the fruit, keeping the peel to a consistent width with nice straight lines. Avoid pushing to hard so as not to pull off too much pith. You can also use a maraschino cherry to garnish your Old Fashioned if you prefer a sweeter serve.

What’s the best bitters for an Old Fashioned?

Many Old Fashioned recipes call for Angostura bitters. And whilst most say it’s the best bitters for an Old Fashioned, we’ve discovered a blend that we think’s even better. This mix combines Angostura bitters with three others, elevating the sweet and spiced flavours of The Glenlivet 18 Year Old whisky. Experiment with your own version or if bitters aren’t your thing, you can make an Old Fashioned without. Try swapping for Campari, muddled fruit or extra zesty orange peel.

Can you make an Old Fashioned with scotch?

You can make an Old Fashioned with any type of whisky. The choice is up to the personal preference of the drinker. Some traditionalists prefer bourbon or rye, but like many others, we think scotch is the best spirit to use. The complex notes are wonderful to discover in a simple Old Fashioned mix, with bitters and sugar complimenting the the whisky’s sweet smokiness.