And no, we don’t mean bourbon-and-Coke. Please. If you can’t take it straight up or with a splash of branch water, let us recomm/files/storyimages/that classic cocktail, the Manhattan. It’s about as simple, and as sweet, a mixed drink as you’ll find: Pour a three-to-one ratio of bourbon to sweet vermouth, add a dash of Angostura bitters (or not) and drop in a maraschino cherry or two. It’s generally served cold, either shaken with ice, then strained, or poured on the rocks.
Not sweet enough for you? Lower the bourbon/vermouth ratio to two-to-one or — purists, please avert your eyes — add a little of the maraschino cherry juice to your mix.
Any decent watering hole in town can serve up a good Manhattan, and probably each will vary the ingredients and proportions a smidgen. You’ll find one of the more impressive presentations at Azalea, where they mix their concoction in a stainless-steel shaker and then strain it into a tiny sidecar carafe that’s placed in ice water, keeping it nicely chilled while you sip your portions daintily from a martini glass.