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Maple Bourbon Cocktail

The seventh day of Christmas drinking just might be my favorite so far…a Maple Bourbon Cocktail.

I know, I know…I already have a bourbon drink in this series this year. But I figured since I don’t even like bourbon, and have managed to try two bourbon cocktails (Apple Bourbon Cocktail and this Maple Bourbon Cocktail), that are both delicious, I figure I should share both. Why the hell not, right?

So ultimately, this is a play on an old fashioned. An old fashioned is bourbon with muddled sugar, bitters and a twist of orange peel. And then you get a cute cherry on top. I ran with this idea and made some replacements – er improvements.

A better bourbon drink.

Use maple syrup instead of sugar. Maple syrup has such a deep, warm flavor. And to really hone in on that flavor, I reduced it for this drink. Just boiling til the syrup concentrates down…giving it a deeper more toasted sweetness. And, of course, if you are making this on the fly or are pressed for time, you can skip this step entirely and just pour right out of the bottle. One thing though – DO NOT USE PANCAKE SYRUP! Omg it is not the same f’ing thing AT ALL. And not nearly as good. Every one, even if you prefer Mrs. Butterworth’s for your morning pancakes, should have a small bottle of the real thing on hand…it is so much better and can be used in so many things. And it is not nearly as expensive as it used to be – so go get some 🙂

Add some orange juice to bulk it up. This is a maple bourbon cocktail not a stiff drink. An old fashioned is not a full drink – it is just the bourbon. Adding some orange juice makes this more of a cocktail and lifts it up. Orange is also a very festive flavor and goes great with the maple syrup.

Lastly, if you are interested in a typical old-fashioned, here is the recipe for that. But I encourage you, especially if you like bourbon and like an old fashioned, that you give this a try, you will be pleasantly surprised. And maybe even convert some non-bourbon drinkers along with you.


Maple Bourbon Cocktail


  • 1/2 cup bourbon
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice don't use concentrated if you can help it
  • 1 tablespoon of reduced maple syrup plus a tiny bit extra for a drizzle to top it off  (if not reducing, use 1 1/2 tablespoons of maple syrup)
  • dash of Angostura bitters or any orange bitters
  • Amarena or Luxardo cherries for garnish use maraschino if you can't get Amarena or Luxardo cherries


  1. In a a cocktail shaker combine the bourbon, orange juice, tablespoon of maple syrup and bitters. Shake really well. Pour over ice and drizzle with the little bit of maple syrup. Add a cherry for garnish.

Let me know whatcha think!