Mike’s Mix: Smoked High West Old Fashioned

Each week, Mike Augustyniak finds a new cocktail from a local mixologist. This week, he heads to FireLake Grill House and Cocktail Bar at the Radisson Blu Mall of America for a smokey take on a classic cocktail.


  • 2 oz High West Bourye Whiskey (though any High West Whiskey can be used, according to your palette)
  • ¼ oz smoked simple syrup
  • 3 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Add several drops of liquid smoke to 2:1 simple syrup
  • (credit: CBS)

    (credit: CBS)


    Stir all ingredients over ice in a mixing glass; strain into a chilled lowball glass. Garnish with a skewered cherry.

    Taste Test

    I judge bars on their Old Fashioned. Why? Because it is such a sparingly-simple recipe that it’s hard to hide mistakes or poor craftsmanship. The quality of the ingredients matter; the method matters; and, yet, the boundaries are just stretchy enough that a good bartender can riff while staying true to the drink’s essence.

    Such is the case with bartender Jay Rankin’s Smoked Old Fashioned, using the core four types of High West Whiskey. Liquid smoke can be added to rich simple syrup if you’re in a time crunch. Alternatively you could also infuse the spirit itself with smoke, using this interesting method.

    High West is served at FireLake Grill House and Cocktail Barh at the Radisson Blu Mall of America is an ideal choice to host a cocktail hour with clients or meet with friends over drinks and appetizers. Unwind with a microbrew and a tasty snack at the cocktail bar, or savor an expertly prepared farm-to-table entree in the restaurant’s elegant dining room.

    More from Mike Augustyniak

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