The Rob Roy cocktail, the Manhattan’s brother-in-law, is the perfect cocktail to warm you up on a snowy Saturday. While there is little historical confirmation, rumor has it that this cocktail was first concocted at the Waldorf Astoria in New York in 1894. Where the Manhattan calls for Rye Whiskey, the Rob Roy calls for a Scotch Whiskey. Not everyone has an affinity for Scotch Whiskey, but combined with sweet vermouth and orange bitters, this cocktail is well-balanced and will warm your belly.
We’ve taken our recipe from the 1948 Old Mr. Boston’s De Luxe Official Bartender’s Guide. There aren’t many ingredients to this cocktail – making it difficult to mess up – and besides, sometimes less is more.
1.5oz Scotch Whiskey (Laphroig)
3/4oz Italian Vermouth (We prefer Dolin, even if it is French)
2 Dashes Orange bitters (Original recipe calls for 1 dash)
This cocktail should be stirred, strained, and sipped.
While the 1935 The Old Waldorf-Astoria Bar Book calls for sweet vermouth, some may prefer to use dry vermouth, hence, the Dry Rob Roy. Additionally, where the original recipe calls for Orange Bitters, some have found Angostura or Peychaud’s Bitters to be an ideal complement to the Scotch Whiskey.