Cherry Infused Bourbon Old Fashioned

by Kris on June 7, 2012

I’m not a huge fan of cocktails. Leave it to me and I’ll choose a beer over any alcoholic drink, especially when it’s hot outside. I am however, a fan of bourbon during the winter months. On a cold day it’s so nice to warm up by a fire with a glass of bourbon on the rocks. Recently I’ve come across a few recipes for infused bourbon which peaked my interest. Kathryne from Cookie and Kate had a mint julep recipe with strawberry infused bourbon a few weeks ago for the Kentucky Derby. Last week I also came across a recipe for peach infused bourbon for an ice tea cocktail by Sarah from 20 something cupcakes. Although I seem to associate bourbon with cool weather, I truly trust these ladies and their seasonal food choices. Having a large basket of fresh cherries on hand, I decided to try my luck with infused bourbon.

Infusing your own alcohol is quite simple and only four things are needed to make a successful batch; a mason jar, bourbon, fruit, and time. I washed and pitted my cherries and filled a mason jar to the top with the fruit. I poured the bourbon into the jar and sealed the lid. I took Kathryne’s advice and stored it in the same cupboard as my coffee to remind myself to shake the jar once a day. The process reminded me a lot of making vanilla extract, only it was ready in a quarter of the time. 

With the season finale of Mad Men this Sunday, I was inspired by the classic cocktails so loved by Don Draper. Old Fashioned is a cocktail that has seen quite a revival thanks to the AMC show. It is quite simple to make and calls for bourbon and cherries among a few other ingredients. I knew my cherry infused bourbon would be a perfect match for this mid century summer beverage. I was surprised by how drinkable and refreshing the cocktail was. In my mind I thought it would be too overwhelming for a hot day but I was proved wrong. So glad I trusted Kathryne and Sarah on this one!

I’m really looking forward to enjoying the season’s last episode of Mad Men with a refreshing Old Fashioned. Maybe I’ll get inspired enough to make a mid century dinner to match. Are you a fan of Mad Men? Wasn’t last week’s episode crazy?! I’m still in shock. 

Cherry Infused Bourbon

Yield 3 cups

  • 3 cups Bourbon
  • 2 cups fresh cherries
  1. Wash two cups of cherries and remove the stems and the pits. Place the cherries in a large mason jar.
  2. Add three cups of Bourbon to the mason jar and seal with the lid. Place in a cool dark place for one week. Shake the jar once a day for seven days.
  3. Using a fine sieve strain the liquid from the cherries. Store the infused bourbon in a mason jar in the freezer.

Old Fashioned with Cherry Infused Bourbon

Serves 1

  • 1 Tsp. sugar
  • 3 dashes of bitters
  • 1 Tsp. water
  • 2 fresh cherries, pitted
  • 2 slices of orange, including the peel
  • 2 oz. cherry infused bourbon
  • soda water (optional)
  • Ice cubes
  1. Place one teaspoon of sugar in a glass and add three dashes of bitters.
  2. Drizzle one teaspoon of water over the sugar. Place one pitted cherry in the glass.
  3. Add one slice of orange to the glass and muddle the fruit into the sugar.
  4. Pour two ounces of cherry infused bourbon into the glass and stir to combine. Add ice cubes to the glass and garnish with remaining cherry and orange slice. Serve as is or add soda water.

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Sarah from 20something cupcakes June 7, 2012 at 5:54 am

Absolutely love this! Brilliant idea.


Kris June 7, 2012 at 10:13 am

Thanks for the inspiration Sarah!


Cookie and Kate June 7, 2012 at 8:32 am

Your cherry-infused bourbon is gorgeous, Kris! I have cherries in my fridge right now and bourbon (always) on my counter…this needs to happen. And you reminded me that I need to catch up on Mad Men! Like right now!


Kris June 7, 2012 at 10:15 am

Thanks Kathryne! Yes you do! Don’t want to spoil anything but the last two episodes were crazy!!


erin June 7, 2012 at 8:43 am

Ha- I think I should declare today cocktail day as yours in the the third post about them that I’ve read (including mine!) While I’m with you (wine and beer!) this cocktail looks delicious!


Kris June 7, 2012 at 10:18 am

Ha! Thanks Erin. What does that say about us bloggers? I think we all need a little cocktail break! Off to check out your post. :)


Earthy Nicole June 8, 2012 at 6:36 pm

I’ve always been a fan of bourbon but I admit, I hadn’t tried an Old-Fashioned until I started watching mad men. Fun fact: The glasses Don Draper has in his office are called Dorothy Thorpe Roly Poly glasses. Anyways, I found a set for my husband on our anniversary and I love sipping an Old-Fashioned out of them. I had never thought to infuse whiskey, even though I see infused vodkas popping up all over the place. Great idea! xx


Stephanie June 10, 2012 at 3:14 pm

Yes! A thousand times yes! I love making infused booze in the fall to give away at Christmas but you’ve reminded me that all the beautiful summer fruit can be used to infuse alcohol for summery cocktails! I cannot wait to give this a go.


Rosabel June 10, 2012 at 6:07 pm

Summer and cocktail: what better combination! Thanks for sharing! Being from Quebec, Canada, I will probably try a version with Organic Maple Syrup (healthier than white sugar). Should be great! (Note that I get mine with Rouge Maple as it is not easy to find).


sjc13 June 12, 2012 at 5:47 pm

Wow, looks great. I have to try this recipe. Thanks for posting.


meatballs & milkshakes June 13, 2012 at 10:32 am

Yum! This looks amazing! I made some homemade maraschino cherries around the holidays to giveaway and I use them in bourbon for manhattans with a splash of the liquid….similar finished drink, but this looks delicious too!


sarah June 25, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Perfect. My father-in-law only drinks old-fashioneds, and we are headed to visit for a week soon. I’ll have to make these for them! And your photos are so lovely.


Moby July 20, 2012 at 10:26 am

And those Bourbon infused cherries will make the most divine pie!


marla April 19, 2013 at 7:41 am

Such a lovely cocktail!


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