Toronto Cocktail: A Classic with a Twist

If you’re looking for a sophisticated and intriguing cocktail that balances bold flavors with a smooth finish, the Toronto Cocktail is your perfect pick. This classic drink combines the richness of rye whiskey with the herbal complexity of Fernet Branca, creating a delightful and memorable sipping experience. Whether you’re hosting a cocktail party or simply enjoying a quiet evening, the Toronto Cocktail is a must-try for any cocktail enthusiast.


  • 60ml (2 oz) rye whiskey
  • 15ml (1/2 oz) Fernet Branca
  • 7.5ml (1/4 oz) simple syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Lemon twist (for garnish)


Prepare Your Glass:

  1. Chill a coupe or martini glass in the freezer for a few minutes or fill it with ice water to cool it down while you prepare the cocktail.

Mix the Ingredients: 2. In a mixing glass, combine the rye whiskey, Fernet Branca, simple syrup, and Angostura bitters.

  1. Fill the mixing glass with ice and stir the mixture well for about 20-30 seconds until it is well-chilled.

Strain and Serve: 4. Discard the ice water from your chilled glass or take the glass out of the freezer.

  1. Using a strainer, pour the cocktail into the prepared glass.

Garnish: 6. Twist a lemon peel over the glass to release its oils, then drop it into the drink as a garnish.

Enjoy: 7. Savor the complexity of the Toronto Cocktail, appreciating the harmonious blend of rye’s warmth, Fernet’s bitterness, and the subtle sweetness of the simple syrup.

Nutritional Information: The Toronto Cocktail is not only delicious but also boasts some unique benefits:

Rye Whiskey:

  • Rich in antioxidants and contains fewer congeners than darker spirits, potentially reducing hangover severity.

Fernet Branca:

  • Known for its digestive properties, Fernet Branca can aid in digestion and is often enjoyed as a post-meal digestif.

Simple Syrup:

  • Adds a touch of sweetness, balancing the bold flavors without adding significant calories.

Angostura Bitters:

  • Enhances the flavor profile with a mix of herbs and spices, while also known to aid digestion.

Tips and Variations:

Adjust the Sweetness:

  • For a sweeter cocktail, increase the amount of simple syrup to 10ml (2/3 oz).

Alternate Spirits:

  • Substitute bourbon for rye whiskey if you prefer a slightly sweeter and smoother flavor profile.

Herbal Twist:

  • Add a dash of orange bitters along with Angostura for an additional layer of complexity and citrus notes.

Serving Suggestions:

Before Dinner:

  • Serve the Toronto Cocktail as an aperitif to stimulate appetite with its bitter and aromatic qualities.

Cocktail Parties:

  • Impress your guests with this classic and sophisticated drink at your next gathering.

Relaxing Evenings:

  • Enjoy the Toronto Cocktail on a quiet evening to unwind and appreciate its rich, complex flavors.

Preparation Tips:

Quality Ingredients:

  • Use high-quality rye whiskey and Fernet Branca for the best flavor.

Proper Chilling:

  • Ensure the cocktail is well-chilled by stirring with plenty of ice and using a pre-chilled glass.

Garnish Importance:

  • Don’t skip the lemon twist garnish; it adds a refreshing citrus aroma that enhances the overall experience.

With its perfect balance of bold and smooth flavors, the Toronto Cocktail is a timeless classic that deserves a spot in your cocktail repertoire. Cheers!

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