I'll start right off and say this wasn't my idea. The idea originated from a Master Distiller of a micro-distillery who mentioned it to a friend of mine. Fast forward a number of weeks and I'm sitting on friends back patio commenting on how delicious the Manhattan is. He proceeds to show me his barrel which is full of Manhattan deliciousness.
Ok, so not to assume that everyone knows what a Manhattan is, this is a typical classic recipe:
2 oz Bourbon or Rye.5 oz of
2 shakes of Bitters
Couple Maraschino cherries with a little of the cherry juice to taste.
Pour into rocks glass filled with ice.
I've blogged about my re-barrel projects and it so happens the barrel was sitting empty. I put the barrel in the kitchen sink and proceeded to fill it with water and of course it leaked like a rusty tuna boat. Water was pouring from the seams. Did I panic you say? Nope. The barrel was dry having sit empty for a while so I expected it to leak. I kept refilling the barrel to keep it full and after a couple of hours, the leaking slowed and then stopped altogether. I let it sit overnight full of water to make sure the barrel was well saturated.
For my Manhattan concoction (and that's what it was) I proceed to pull together the following:
1.75L Tom Moore Bottled in Bond (a Barton product)
275ml of various Rye whisky mini's left over from a recent double blind tasting
500ml of all 10 recipes of Four Roses single barrel also left over from a recent blind tasting
These all went into the barrel. I then added approximately 600ml of Sweet Vermouth, a tablespoon of Blood Orange Bitters and Maraschino cherry liquor to taste (approx. 1oz). The stopper went back into the barrel and I proceeded to gently roll the barrel to get the concoction mixed up.
How did it taste? Well, I'm sippin a glass right now as I type and I must say it turned out pretty darn tasty. I think the Maraschino liquor and Blood Orange Bitters gives it a unique taste from the classic Manhattan recipe. The barrel contains about 3L of mix so I'll be enjoying this for a while and also enjoy the benefit of a little barrel aging as I go along.
I'm not content to just sip my whiskey, now I'm playing mad scientist.