Manhattan variation – Bourbon Manhattan drink

April 24, 2017 (Last Updated: August 15, 2020) - As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

This Bourbon Manhattan drink is a delicious classic cocktail that is easy to make and the best Manhattan recipe.

Manhattan cocktail in a lowball glass and one block of ice. There are two cherries garnishing this drink.

Rye whiskey is generally my first choice for a Manhattan cocktail, but I think a good bourbon is a viable option for a Manhattan. Today, we are going to explore a slight variation on my Manhattan cocktail recipe and discuss a recipe for a bourbon Manhattan drink.

I mean… there isn’t much different from a bourbon Manhattan drink recipe than a rye recipe. So, just switch out the whiskey. But what does this mean for the flavor? Generally, you are going to get a sweeter drink. No matter the type or brand of whiskey you use, that flavor is going to end up in the final product. Since bourbon is distilled with corn, it tends to already have a sweeter flavor profile that will end up in the bourbon Manhattan drink

Maker’s Mark in a bourbon Manhattan drink

I choose to keep a bottle of Maker’s Mark bourbon around the house. It is great for when I might want a neat whiskey, a Perfect bourbon manhattan drinkManhattan, or even a bourbon Manhattan drink. While they are not really public about their mash bill, they take pride in using wheat in their recipe. Whiskey Professor indicates that this tends to give a sweeter taste than other bourbons. Bourbon is already a sweeter drink, as it is distilled with corn. A wheat bourbon, such as Maker’s Mark, can give a soft and sweet flavor.

Certainly, if you are going to make your Manhattan with bourbon, find the brand that best works for you. There are many local and national brands out there that are reasonably priced and worth a try. Besides, an average consumer will not go wrong with having a bottle of Maker’s Mark around.

Ice Or No Ice In A Manhattan?

You will often see the Manhattan served a few different ways. You could see it served as a straight cocktail with no ice, but in many places is served in a lowball glass with ice. That is the method I choose to make for my Manhattan cocktails.

Cherries in My Manhattan

I love Luxardo cherries with my bourbon Manhattan drink! The way I served this, note that the cherries are hanging over the edge as the garnish, but that lovely cherry juice drips down into the drink just kissing it with the cherry flavor.

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Manhattan cocktail on a glass chess board

Products Used For This Recipe

  1. Whiskey Ice Cube Tray
  2. Cocktail Shaker
  3. Lowball Glasses

Manhattan variation – bourbon Manhattan drink

Manhattan cocktail in a lowball glass and one block of ice. There are two cherries garnishing this drink.

Bourbon Manhattan for The Masses. It is a beautiful and tasty drink.

  • Author: Ben Myhre
  • Prep Time: 2 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 3 Minutes
  • Total Time: 5 Minutes
  • Yield: 1 Cocktail 1x
  • Category: Drinks
  • Method: Shaker
  • Cuisine: Cocktails


  • Ice
  • 2 oz Maker’s Mark Whiskey
  • 1 oz Sweet Vermouth
  • 2 dashes Bitters
  • 2 Luxardo Maraschino Cherry


  1. Fill lowball glass with ice for measurement.
  2. Place ice into a shaker.
  3. Add Vermouth, Bourbon, and Bitters.
  4. Use mixing spoon to stir ingredients thoroughly.
  5. Pour entire contents into lowball glass.
  6. Garnish with cherries

Keywords: Bourbon Manhattan

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