Modern Riff: The Perfect Turkey

This classic little riff on the perfect Manhattan is one of my favorite holiday inspired cocktails, and I used to run it on the Revival Bar + Kitchen menu during the week of Thanksgiving. It’s seasonal, warms you right up, and most importantly, gets you hella drunk when your family is visiting.

-The Perfect Turkey-

adapted from, reposted from Alpha Cook

2 oz Wild Turkey 101 rye or bourbon

.5 oz  sweet vermouth
.5 oz dry vermouth
3 dashes maple or pumpkin bitters

Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass filled with ice for 20-30 seconds, or until you’re happy with the temperature and dilution. Strain into a chilled cocktail vessel of your choice. Garnish with an orange twist.

If you’re feeling fancy...

For a sweeter version you can stick with the Epicurious-recommended garnish of a spiced sugar rim. I like to add a little dried orange peel into the mix. It’s fairly simple to prepare and keeps well up to about a year after you’ve made it in an airtight container.

orange peels from one medium orange, dehydrated

¼ cup sugar
¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
⅛ tsp freshly grated cinnamon
pinch of allspice

In a small food processor or spice mill, zap until fully integrated and the orange pieces are as small as you like.  Then pour onto a saucer. Use a piece of orange to wet the rim of the cocktail glass, then dip the glass into the sugar mixture.

I chose to keep my peels on the chunky side for texture, but most like them as a finer powder.


  1. +1, have made this many times from the alpha cook days! Will have to try the fancification method; might try it tomorrow depending on how under-control things are.


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