Make Ahead

Perfect Manhattan

June 16, 2015
4 Ratings
Photo by Bobbi Lin
  • Serves 1
Author Notes

This cocktail can be anything to anyone—especially if you use equal parts sweet and dry vermouth, as this “perfect Manhattan” does, which unbuttons the dark, boozy collar of a regular Manhattan just the right amount. Is it perfect? I don’t know if you’ll think it is, but I might make one soon to find out. —Food52

What You'll Need
  • 1 1/3 ounces Bulleit rye
  • 1/3 ounce sweet vermouth
  • 1/3 ounce dry vermouth
  • 2 dashes bitters
  • Maraschino cherries, for garnish
  1. Combine everything save for the cherries in a mixing glass. Add ice and stir a good 10 to 15 seconds, depending on the size of your ice cubes.
  2. Strain into coupes or lowballs, and garnish with a cherry if you like.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • zora
  • jeacooking
  • IAmBroom
  • PS007

4 Reviews

jeacooking November 22, 2021
A nice cocktail. I prefer a traditional Manhattan.
IAmBroom December 22, 2016
It's ironic you say this "unbuttons the dark, boozy collar of a regular Manhattan just the right amount." This is boozier than most Manhattan recipes by alcohol content. (The first one I found online was 3 parts rye to 1 part vermouth, where this recipe is 4:1).

What it IS is less sweet... which is an improvement, IMO, lending the Manhattan more of the sophistication in taste it carries in name.
PS007 January 14, 2020
Check your math, it's 2:1 (try adding the two vermouths together) which is the correct ratio for a classic Manhattan. 3:1 or a blistering 4:1 might indicate a drinking problem. That being said, I would double the amounts in this recipe for a cocktail for myself haha :) :) :)
zora June 22, 2015
My husband loves perfect bourbon manhattans. I use Carpano Antica Formula sweet vermouth and Dolin dry, homemade brandied cherries, and a small piece of lemon peel. the lemon peel is the garnish for a dry manhattan, and since the perfect is halfway between regular and dry manhattans, using both cherry and lemon garnishes seems appropriate.