Location: 1816 E. Sixth, Austin
Year Opened: 2013
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Owner: Scranton Twohey
The Story: Twohey presides over a proper yet approachable bar that’s at the heart of East Austin’s craft-cocktail scene. It’s set in a historic building that for decades housed beloved watering hole Rabbit’s Lounge.
Ambience: Century-old stone walls, chandeliers, and candles create a cozy interior ideal for a cold night; there’s also a large patio.
What to Order: The Whisler’s Old Fashioned might not reflect the bar’s rotating seasonal menu (unlike the Sleepy Hollow, a toasty union of bourbon and pumpkin shrub), but it’s one of the best versions in town. “The bar sells more than 50,000 old-fashioneds a year,” Twohey says. “It’s the gold standard of cocktails, and it’s a drink for every season.”
Pro Tip: The ideal time to go is midweek, Twohey says, when “you can sometimes listen to a two-piece jazz band or disappear in the dim lights and quiet conversations.”
Whisler’s Old Fashioned
2 oz. Elijah Craig bourbon
.33 oz. Demerara sugar
4 dashes Angostura Bitters
Orange peel swath
Luxardo maraschino cherry
Pour ingredients into a container. Stir 25 times. Pour over large ice cube in a traditional old-fashioned cocktail glass. Express the oils of an orange peel swath into the glass and then wipe around the rim of the glass. Finish with one Luxardo maraschino cherry.
1 oz. Sacred bond brandy
.5 pear brandy
.75 oz. lime
.75 oz. pear turmeric
.25 oz. dram allspice
Scotch islay mist
Star anise pod
Build all ingredients in a shaker. Shake vigorously. Double strain over fresh ice, and add garnish of dehydrated pear and star anise pod.
1.5 Wild Turkey bourbon
.5 oz. Suze
.75 oz. Averna amaro
Large ice cube
Add all ingredients to a glass stirring vessel. Stir for 40 revolutions. Strain over a large ice cube in cocktail glass. Lemon swath the glass, express the lemon oils into the glass, and line the rim of the glass.
This article originally appeared in the January 2019 issue of Texas Monthly with the headline “Always in Fashion.” Subscribe today.