The Manhattan cocktail is a classic drink that dates back to the mid-19th century and has remained popular ever since. While its exact origins are debatable, the cocktail is widely believed to have originated in New York City, particularly in the borough of Manhattan.

The basic components of a Manhattan cocktail include whiskey (typically rye), sweet vermouth, and bitters, garnished with a cherry. The precise proportions may vary depending on personal preference or the specific recipe being followed.

There are a few stories regarding the drink’s origin. One popular theory attributes the creation of the Manhattan to a bartender named Julio Richelieu muddling it at the Manhattan Club in New York City in the 1870s. According to the tale, the cocktail was created to honor a political figure, Samuel J. Tilden, during a campaign event.

Another story suggests that the cocktail predates this event and was actually created by a bartender named Black at a bar on Broadway near Houston Street. According to this account, the drink gained popularity and recognition at the Manhattan Club, leading to its association with the venue.

Regardless of its precise origin, the Manhattan cocktail gained widespread popularity over the years and became a staple in cocktail culture. During the Prohibition era in the United States from 1920 to 1933, the cocktail evolved and adapted to the availability of ingredients. Many variations emerged, using alternative spirits such as Canadian whisky or bourbon instead of rye.

The Manhattan cocktail has transcended time and remains a classic choice that can be enjoyed in bars and homes worldwide. Its rich history and iconic status in cocktail culture have solidified its place as a timeless and beloved drink.

By Duke