Saratoga Cocktail Drink

Saratoga

A shot of Gavin Wrigley looking to the camera in a dimly lit room
Written by Gavin Wrigley
Andrea
Tested by
Andrea Ottaiano

Are you craving a unique cocktail? This Saratoga Drink recipe is your answer! It’s easy to whip up, and the taste is simply irresistible.

Saratoga Drink Recipe

Get mixing with this uncomplicated Saratoga drink recipe! This vibrant cocktail, featuring brandy, whiskey, vermouth, and bitters, is an excellent match for the brisk fall twilight.

Prep time:

1 minute

Mixing time:

1 minute

Servings:

1

Calories:

193 kl

Ingredients

  • 1 oz Rye Whiskey
  • 1 oz Brandy
  • 1 oz sweet Vermouth
  • 2 dashes Angostura aromatic bitters
  • Lemon twist, for garnish, optional

Equipment

  • Mixing Glass
  • Bar spoon
  • Strainer
  • Martini Glass chilled
  • Measuring Jigger

Instructions

  • Chill Glass: Place your martini glass in the freezer for a few hours or fill it up with ice cubes before starting.
  • Add Angostura Bitters: Drop 2 dashes Angostura aromatic bitters into the mixing glass.
  • Add Sweet Vermouth: Pour 1 oz sweet Vermouth into the mixing glass.
  • Add Brandy: Measure and pour 1 oz Brandy into the mixing glass.
  • Add Rye Whiskey: Add 1 oz Rye Whiskey to the mix.
  • Add ice: Fill your mixing glass with ice cubes.
  • Stir Gently: Use a bar spoon to stir the ingredients gently.
  • Strain: Strain the mixture into your chilled martini glass.
  • Garnish: Garnish with a lemon twist.

Notes

Substitutes:

  • Rye Whiskey: If you don't have rye whiskey on hand, bourbon is a good substitute that I often use. It's sweeter and less spicy than rye but still works well in this cocktail.
  • Brandy: You can use cognac as a substitute for brandy; it's a type of brandy made in the Cognac region of France and has a similar flavor profile.
  • Sweet Vermouth: Dry vermouth can be used instead of sweet vermouth if you prefer a less sweet cocktail. Just remember to adjust the amount of bitters to balance the flavors.

Making a Pitcher of Saratoga Cocktail:

  • Scale: To make a pitcher serving 8, multiply all the ingredients by 8: 8 oz of rye whiskey, 8 oz of brandy, 8 oz of sweet vermouth, and 16 dashes of Angostura bitters.
  • Mix: Combine all the ingredients in a large pitcher with ice cubes and stir well.
  • Serve: Strain the mixture into chilled martini glasses, garnish with a lemon twist, and serve immediately.

Making it Non-Alcoholic:

  • Rye Whiskey Substitute: Use a non-alcoholic whiskey substitute; several brands are available that mimic the whiskey flavor quite well.
  • Brandy Substitute: For a non-alcoholic version, you can use a brandy-flavored syrup or a non-alcoholic brandy substitute.
  • Vermouth Substitute: look for a non-alcoholic vermouth available on the market or use an aromatized grape juice. 
  • Proceed As Usual: Use these non-alcoholic substitutes instead of the regular ingredients, follow the original steps, and enjoy a non-alcoholic version.

Making it Vegan:

This cocktail is already vegan-friendly as it doesn't contain any animal products. However, always check your ingredients' labels to ensure they're suitable for vegans. Some brands of vermouth may use animal products in their production process.

Nutrition Facts

Calories
193
% Daily Value*
Sodium
 
3
mg
0
%
Carbohydrates
 
5
g
2
%
Sugar
 
2
g
2
%
Potassium
 
28
mg
1
%
Protein
 
0.1
g
0
%
Calcium
 
2
mg
0
%
Iron
 
0.1
mg
1
%

 

Saratoga Cocktail Drink

Saratoga Drink Recipe

Gavin Wrigley Written by Gavin Wrigley
Jump to Video
Get mixing with this uncomplicated Saratoga drink recipe! This vibrant cocktail, featuring brandy, whiskey, vermouth, and bitters, is an excellent match for the brisk fall twilight.
Prep time: 1 minute
Mixing time: 1 minute
Servings: 1
Calories: 193

Ingredients
 

  • 1 oz Rye Whiskey
  • 1 oz Brandy
  • 1 oz sweet Vermouth
  • 2 dashes Angostura aromatic bitters
  • Lemon twist - for garnish, optional

Equipment

  • Mixing Glass
  • Bar spoon
  • Strainer
  • Martini Glass chilled
  • Measuring Jigger

Instructions

  • Chill Glass: Place your martini glass in the freezer for a few hours or fill it up with ice cubes before starting.
  • Add Angostura Bitters: Drop 2 dashes Angostura aromatic bitters into the mixing glass.
  • Add Sweet Vermouth: Pour 1 oz sweet Vermouth into the mixing glass.
  • Add Brandy: Measure and pour 1 oz Brandy into the mixing glass.
  • Add Rye Whiskey: Add 1 oz Rye Whiskey to the mix.
  • Add ice: Fill your mixing glass with ice cubes.
  • Stir Gently: Use a bar spoon to stir the ingredients gently.
  • Strain: Strain the mixture into your chilled martini glass.
  • Garnish: Garnish with a lemon twist.

Notes

Substitutes:

  • Rye Whiskey: If you don't have rye whiskey on hand, bourbon is a good substitute that I often use. It's sweeter and less spicy than rye but still works well in this cocktail.
  • Brandy: You can use cognac as a substitute for brandy; it's a type of brandy made in the Cognac region of France and has a similar flavor profile.
  • Sweet Vermouth: Dry vermouth can be used instead of sweet vermouth if you prefer a less sweet cocktail. Just remember to adjust the amount of bitters to balance the flavors.

Making a Pitcher of Saratoga Cocktail:

  • Scale: To make a pitcher serving 8, multiply all the ingredients by 8: 8 oz of rye whiskey, 8 oz of brandy, 8 oz of sweet vermouth, and 16 dashes of Angostura bitters.
  • Mix: Combine all the ingredients in a large pitcher with ice cubes and stir well.
  • Serve: Strain the mixture into chilled martini glasses, garnish with a lemon twist, and serve immediately.

Making it Non-Alcoholic:

  • Rye Whiskey Substitute: Use a non-alcoholic whiskey substitute; several brands are available that mimic the whiskey flavor quite well.
  • Brandy Substitute: For a non-alcoholic version, you can use a brandy-flavored syrup or a non-alcoholic brandy substitute.
  • Vermouth Substitute: look for a non-alcoholic vermouth available on the market or use an aromatized grape juice. 
  • Proceed As Usual: Use these non-alcoholic substitutes instead of the regular ingredients, follow the original steps, and enjoy a non-alcoholic version.

Making it Vegan:

This cocktail is already vegan-friendly as it doesn't contain any animal products. However, always check your ingredients' labels to ensure they're suitable for vegans. Some brands of vermouth may use animal products in their production process.

What is a Saratoga Drink?

A Saratoga Drink is a whiskey-based cocktail made of rye whiskey, brandy, sweet vermouth, and bitters. This cocktail is relatively easy to make as it involves simple mixing techniques; however, the challenge lies in balancing the strong flavors of the rye whiskey and brandy.

A side shot of a Saratoga cocktail in a martini glass on a white coaster placed on a dark table surrounded by a placemat, a bar spoon, a jigger and a red cloth.

What is a Saratoga Drink made of – The ingredients

For the creation of a Saratoga Drink, you’ll need these ingredients:

  • Rye Whiskey: This is the base spirit of the Saratoga cocktail. It provides a robust and spicy flavor profile that forms the backbone of the drink.
  • Brandy: This rich and complex spirit adds depth and sophistication to the cocktail. Its fruity, nutty, and caramel notes complement the rye whiskey perfectly.
  • Sweet Vermouth: This fortified wine contributes sweetness and herbal complexity to balance out the strong flavors of the rye whiskey and cognac.
  • Angostura Bitters: A few dashes of this concentrated flavoring agent enhance the overall taste of the Saratoga cocktail. It adds a layer of aromatic bitterness that ties all other ingredients together.
  • Lemon Twist: Used as a garnish, it imparts a subtle citrus aroma that brightens the drink and adds a refreshing finish.

Rye Whiskey, Brandy, sweet Vermouth and Angostura aromatic bitters laid out on a white bar table

How do you make a Saratoga Drink?

Use our step-by-step instructions to easily make a Saratoga Drink:

1
<p>Start by chilling a cocktail glass. This can be done by filling it with ice and letting it sit while you prepare the drink.</p>

Start by chilling a cocktail glass. This can be done by filling it with ice and letting it sit while you prepare the drink.

2
<p>Add 2 dashes of Angostura aromatic bitters to a mixing glass.</p>

Add 2 dashes of Angostura aromatic bitters to a mixing glass.

3
<p>Measure and pour 1 oz of sweet vermouth into the mixing glass</p>

Measure and pour 1 oz of sweet vermouth into the mixing glass

4
<p>Add 1 oz of brandy to the mixing glass.</p>

Add 1 oz of brandy to the mixing glass.

5
<p>Finish by adding 1 oz of rye whiskey.</p>

Finish by adding 1 oz of rye whiskey.

6
<p>Add ice to the mixing glass until it is about three-quarters full.</p>

Add ice to the mixing glass until it is about three-quarters full.

7
<p>Stir the mixture gently for about 30 seconds. This will chill the ingredients and help them blend.</p>

Stir the mixture gently for about 30 seconds. This will chill the ingredients and help them blend.

8
<p>Empty the ice from the chilled cocktail glass and strain the mixture from the mixing glass into the chilled cocktail glass.</p>

Empty the ice from the chilled cocktail glass and strain the mixture from the mixing glass into the chilled cocktail glass.

9
<p>Finally, twist a lemon peel over the drink to release its oils, then drop it into the glass.</p>

Finally, twist a lemon peel over the drink to release its oils, then drop it into the glass.

History and Origin of the Saratoga Drink

The first mention of the Saratoga cocktail appears in Jerry Thomas’s “Bar-Tender’s Guide” published in 1887. Jerry Thomas, often called the father of American mixology, included this drink in his guide, solidifying its place in cocktail history. The original recipe called for brandy, whiskey, sweet vermouth, and bitters – a combination that was both potent and flavorful.

A Saratoga cocktail, shot from above, in a martini glass on a beige marmol table surrounded by Rye Whiskey, Brandy, sweet Vermouth and Angostura aromatic bitters.

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FAQ

How many calories are in a Saratoga Drink?
A standard serving of the Saratoga Drink contains approximately 200 calories. However, this can vary slightly depending on the specific brands of alcohol used.
How strong is the Saratoga drink?
The strength of the Saratoga Drink can be measured in terms of Alcohol by Volume (ABV) and proof. Typically, it has an ABV of around 20%, translating to 40 proof. This makes it a moderately strong cocktail.
What type of alcohol is used in the Saratoga Drink?
The Saratoga Drink primarily uses rye whiskey and brandy as its base spirit. Additionally, it includes sweet vermouth and bitters for added complexity and flavor.
In what kind of glass is the Saratoga Drink served?
The Saratoga Drink is traditionally served in a chilled cocktail glass.
What does the Saratoga Drink taste like?
The Saratoga Drink offers a balanced blend of flavors. The rye whiskey provides a rich, smooth base, the brandy delivers a deep fruity note, while the sweet vermouth adds a hint of sweetness. The bitters contribute a subtle spiciness that complements the other ingredients perfectly.
What is the ratio of ingredients in the Saratoga Drink?
The typical ratio for a Saratoga Drink is equal parts of brandy, rye whiskey and sweet vermouth, with a few dashes of bitters added to taste.
How is the Saratoga Drink served with ice?
The Saratoga Drink is usually stirred with ice and then strained into a chilled cocktail glass. This method ensures that the drink remains cold without becoming diluted by melting ice.

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