Learn how to make the best Brandy Manhattan cocktail recipe.
Our French take on the traditional Manhattan cocktail recipe replaces whiskey with premium brandy.
All you’ll need to make this simple homemade cocktail recipe is quality brandy, sweet red vermouth, Angostura bitters, Maraschino cherries and ice.
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What is Brandy?
Brandy is a fruit spirit produced from mash, juice or wine or residues of edible fruits. The term covers a broad class of spirits produced across the world. Grapes, apples, pears, apricots, plums and cherries are the most commonly used fruits.
The world’s largest brandy producers are France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Luxembourg, Austria, Hungary, Slovakia and Spain.
Most of these fruit spirits are named after their region of origin and base ingredients. For example: Schwarzwälder Kirschwasser (cherry spirit of the Black Forest), Framboise d’Alsace (raspberry of Alsace) and Aprikot dell’Alto Adige (apricot of South Tyrol).
Cognac is the world’s most famous brandy and is specifically produced in the Cognac region of France. Like Scotch whisky or tequila (a type of mezcal), it comes from the actual place for which it’s named. But unlike Scotch, made from malted barley, Cognac is made from grapes.
Our homemade Brandy Manhattan cocktail recipe is prepared with quality French cognac.
World’s Best Cognac Brandy
If it’s your first time preparing a Brandy Manhattan at home here is a list of the world’s best Cognac brands. Like premium Scotch distilleries, each Cognac brand typically produces several expressions. Each has its own unique flavour profile, production method and price point.
Travel to France to Sip a Brandy Manhattan Cocktail
There’s no better way to familiarize yourself with the best Brandy Manhattan recipe then by planning a vacation to visit France.
If you’re a brandy lover, spend your holiday skipping through the historic vineyards and castles of Cognac, located on the west coast just north of Bordeaux.
Book a tour of your favourite Cognac house and enjoy sipping Brandy Manhattan’s at some of the regions most popular cocktail bars, luxury hotels and award-winning restaurants.
Once you’ve returned home from your Cognac holiday, impress friends and family by hosting a French-themed cocktail party featuring our easy homemade Brandy Manhattan recipe.
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Brandy Manhattan Cocktail Tips
- We suggest serving this Brandy Manhattan cocktail in a rocks glass or martini glass.
- We suggest using high quality Luxardo Maraschino Cherry, which you can serve on a skewer or drop into the glass.
- We’ve used Angostura Bitters in this classic recipe but you could also have fun by adding a hint of flavour by substituting Cranberry Bitters, Orange Bitters or Pear Bitters.
- We’ve shaken and strained this Cognac Manhattan recipe but if you like ice in your glass feel free to plop a few cubes into the glass before serving.
Best Bartender Tools & Cocktail Equipment
Before hosting a swanky Brandy Manhattan cocktail party you’ll need to ensure you have the best bartender tools and cocktail equipment.
- Cocktail Kit: cocktail kits are the perfect gift for newbie mixology fans as they include basic bartender tools like a jigger, shaker and spoon.
- Cocktail Shaker: a bartender’s best friend. Purchase a premium cocktail shaker to muddle or shake up your favourite pink gin cocktails.
- Cocktail Glassware: make sure your bar is stocked with a selection of unique glassware to show off your favourite cocktail creations.
- Hawthorne Strainer: this unique strainer features tightly wound coils and perforated holes. It keeps ice and other large ingredients like lime wedges in your cocktail shaker rather than in the glass.
- Bar Spoons: slender and long bar spoons are a must-have when stirring drinks.
- Bottle Opener: easily open bottles of beer or cider with the flick of your wrist or purchase a corkscrew for fine wine.
- Pouring Spout: once you’ve opened a new bottle of gin insert these affordable pourers to make cocktail assembly a breeze.
- Cutting Board: purchase a petite cutting board for your bar to slice garnishes or citrus wedges like lime, orange, lemon or grapefruit.
- Ice Bucket: chill bottles of gin quickly in an ice bucket or keep by the bar when muddling gin mixers into cool creations.
- Ice Crusher: fans of the Mint Julep love an ice crusher.
- Ice Cube Kit: we suggest purchasing a selection of ice cube trays. Silicone styles are our favourite as they’re easy to clean and are available in various shapes and sizes.
- Jigger: use a jigger to accurately measure spirits, juices, syrups and shrubs.
- Juicer: invest in an electronic juicer or buy an affordable hand-held to easily juice fresh citrus like lemons and limes.
- Muddler: fans of the Mojito love a sturdy muddler to mix mint and lime. Muddler’s are handy for any cocktail featuring ingredients that need a pounding like fresh herbs or citrus wedges.
- Citrus Peeler & Zester: adorn your craft cocktails with a thick citrus peel or finer ribbons of lime or lemon zest.
- Rimmer: Bloody Mary and Caesar lovers should outfit their bar with a handy rimmer for salting and sugaring glassware.
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How To Make the Best Brandy Manhattan Cocktail
Brandy Manhattan Cocktail
- Cocktail Shaker
- Shot Glass
- Cocktail Glass
- 2 oz Brandy
- 1 oz Red Vermouth
- 2 dashes Angostura Bitters
- Maraschino Cherry garnish
- Place maraschino cherry in a chilled cocktail glass.
- Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice and shake for 30-40 seconds until well combined.
- Strain into cocktail glass and serve.
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