Woodford Reserve – A Twist On An Old Fashioned

Recently we were set a challenge from the good folks at Woodford Reserve to come up with a twist on a classic American cocktail.

Being such big fans of the Old Fashioned, we jumped at the chance to roll up our sleeves and play barman (we’ve spent enough time on the other side of the bar).

We were invited to South Place Hotel, near Liverpool Street for an induction into Woodford Reserve from brand ambassador Tom Vernon who gave us a history lesson on Woodford Reserve as well as showing us how to make a traditional Old Fashioned cocktail.


The stakes of this competition were high. Everyone’s cocktail that was entered would be judged by Tom Vernon and the lovely folk at South Place Hotel with the winning cocktail being served on their menu for a month!

After checking the hotel out, and seeing they had a cigar terrace, we knew ‘The Heat was on’.

For those that don’t know Woodford Reserve is a super-premium, small batch bourbon that is a product of the Woodford Reserve Distillery, America’s oldest and smallest distillery, located in the heart of Kentucky’s Bluegrass Region. Woodford Reserve has quickly become a highly acclaimed, award-winning bourbon which is savoured by consumers worldwide. It is a bourbon of exceptional richness, depth and character with a smooth, well-rounded finish.

While at the induction we were also taken through a tasting of Woodford to inspire us.

Flavours that we found were cocoa, caramel, and a hint of spice, all rounding up into a creamy smooth finish.

With that in mind and armed with a Woodford Reserve care package, we were off to the lab.

We spent the first week walking around supermarkets, and markets looking for flavours which we thought could make a great old Fashioned.

After experimenting with some crazy ingredients (and we mean crazy) something came back to us that Tom said in that the cocktail needs to be easy enough to replicate and serve in a busy bar.

So we wanted to make something that was easy enough to make but at the same time offered something different that you wouldn’t normally find.

We also wanted something that would look inviting for a non old fashioned drinker so ladies and gentleman, we give you the:


What you need:

Ice: Cube (Not the rapper)
Method: ‘Stir it up’ like Patti LaBelle
50ml Woodford Reserve – £28.95 at Whiskey Exchange
2- 3 tea spoons of Salted Caramel sugar syrup –  £8.45 at Whisky Exchange
3 dashes of Barrel aged Cherry bitters – £8.95 at Whiskey Exchange

Step 1
Add Salted Caramel sugar syrup into glass along with the dashes of barrel aged cherry bitters. Add a third of Woodford Reserve with a few ice cubes and stir until ice has melted a little.

Step 2
Add another third of Woodford Reserve along with a handful of ice cubes and stir again

Step 3
Same as step 2.

Step 4
Add 1 teaspoon of Salted Caramel Syrup, stir and serve.

Salted Caramel Woodford Reserve Old Fashioned

So there you have it, the Salted Caramel Old Fashioned. We opted for Salted Caramel as these were the flavours we found from the tasting that resonated for us, which we wanted to complement. We tried the cocktail with orange bitters, but found it to be slightly over powering but at the same time wanted a fruit based bitter to add a further layer to the cocktail.

Salted Caramel Woodford Reserve Old Fashioned2

We had seen a few barman garnishing an Old Fashioned with a cherry, however we wanted to concentrate on the taste so used the cherry bitters.

Hopefully this drink will convert non old fashioned drinkers to try one with a twist, but still full of the amazing tasting notes from Woodford Reserve.

Our name is Cut The Cap and we endorse this drink.