A bit of history. Around 1880 the recipe was reported for the first time in some quides for bartenders. The origins are not certain, it is said that it was conceived in 1874 at the Manhattan Club of New York for Lady Randolph Churcill who offered a banquet in honor of the politician Samuel J. Tilden.
The official recipe IBA is
Before Dinner cocktail
5 cl Rye Whiskey
2 cl Red Vermouth
1 dash Angostura Bitters
Pour all ingredients into mixing glass with ice cubes. Stir well.
Strain into chilled cocktail glass.
Garnish with cocktail cherry.
The official recipe calls for a sweet vermouth but the Perfect or Medium Manhattan wants a mix of red and dry vermouth in the same total amount of 2 cl. There is also the Dry Manhattan where the dry vermouth completely replaces the red.Not adding the cherry to the maraschino but only a squeeze of lemon peel on the surface (lemon twist). It was fashionable in the 30s and 40s of the last century.
Canadian whiskey is commonly used although it would be better to be able to find Rye (rye- whiskey, a cereal other than wheat).
Personally, I continue to prepare the ancient recipe with two parts of whiskey and one of red vermouth, the angostura bitter and the cherry. Vermouth softens the distillate more and is more pleasant.
I hope it is of clarification especially for newbies.
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