With only three ingredients (two if you omit the bitters), the perfect recipe comes down to the brands and the ratio of whiskey to vermouth. For many years I stuck with a three to one ratio, but lately I have felt that the vermouth needed a slightly stronger presence, so I have switched to a two to one ratio. The number of Sweet Vermouths available is relatively limited, making this selection easier. My current favorite is Martini & Rossi.
As for whiskey there are countless options here, bourbon, rye, Tennessee whiskey and Canadian whisky. I have tried many variants. Rye did not agree with me and the Canadian was a little too sweet. I was a die hard Maker’s Mark proponent but recently tried Gentleman Jack and have given it a slight edge. Rounded out with a strong dash of angostura bitters and three cherries you have the perfect flavor balance.
Serve this devilishly good mixture in a chilled cocktail glass and enjoy every sip!
3 oz bourbon
1 ½ oz sweet vermouth
dash of angostura bitters
Combine everything in a cocktail shaker or pitcher with ice and mix. Serve in a chilled cocktail glass with three cherries.