Brandied Chocolate Manhattan – A Whiskey Cocktail

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A chocolate version of a classic Manhattan recipe with our brandied cherries.




We always are fans of the classics and the folks over at Cut Spike Distillery mentioned on Twitter that they were obsessing about Manhattans. They wanted another recipe to try, and of course it prompted us to finish up our experimentation on this twist of the classic Manhattan.  Invented in the 1870s at the Manhattan Club in New York, this chocolate Manhattan is typical of the cocktails from this period that were plenty boozy and not overly sweet. Try out a SaloonBox cocktail subscription!



Chocolate Manhattan








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Chocolate Manhattan Cocktail in a Martini glass, cherry on a cocktail pick. Bottles of bitters, whiskey and sweet vermouth in the background

Coupe / Martini Glass / Luxardo Cherries



Manhattan Cocktail

Typically made with an American whiskey and Italian vermouth with a splash of bitters the Manhattan is one of those drinks your grandfather grew up drinking. There are a couple of variations that use different alcohols as the base, one of which is the Brandy Manhattan.



Typically found up in the bars of the lake country of Wisconsin and Minnesota, the Brandy Manhattan is a sweeter version that cuts out the whiskey making the drink a fruitier version of the cocktail.



If You Are Looking for More Chocolate Cocktails, Try These!



Mr. Nom tried one of the “North Woods” Manhattans but missed the bite of the whiskey. He enjoyed the additional fruitiness the brandy brought to the drink and wondered what might happen if we combined the brandy and the whiskey into a Manhattan.




What Ingredients are Needed for the Chocolate Brandied Manhattan?

  • Whiskey
  • Brandied Cherries
  • Chocolate Bitters
  • Sweet Vermouth
  • Brandy




We often use our friends as guinea pigs for recipe testing and Mr. Nom tried a variation a few months ago that added honey brandy to the mix. This then got a favorable reaction from most of them, so we knew we were on the right path, and it felt like it was missing something. We tried on and off again over the last few months and didn’t quite hit on the perfect combination (hard to believe, but we do have lots of misses that we don’t share with you!)





If You Are Looking for More Cocktails with Bitters, Try These!



We added the chocolate bitters to our classic Manhattan recipe and addition of the dark chocolate just the right amount of rich deep sweetness to make the drink come alive.



What Kind of Cherries to use in a Manhattan?

Combining the sweet vermouth and brandied cherry with the awesome single malt whiskey and the rich deep chocolate flavor from the bitters takes this twist on a classic cocktail and makes it a real winner! Mix in a Mixing Glass and with a bar spoon. The cherries to use are Maraschinos made with sour Marasca cherries, not the bright red cherries you find at the supermarket!



What is a Dry Manhattan?

A dry Manhattan means using dry vermouth instead of sweet. This cocktail is not that, but we wanted to explain the difference.







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Other Manhattan Recipes

Other Chocolate Cherry Cocktails



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Brandied Chocolate Manhattan - A Whiskey Cocktail
Yield: 1

Brandied Chocolate Manhattan - A Whiskey Cocktail

Prep Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 3 minutes

A chocolate kissed version of a classic Manhattan recipe! Cheers to this chocolate Manhattan.


  • .75 oz brandy
  • 1 oz sweet vermouth
  • 3 dashes chocolate bitters
  • 2 brandied cherries
  • 1.75 oz whiskey


Add ice into a mixing glass and add whiskey.brandy, vermouth and chocolate bitters.

Stir. Place one brandied cherry into the bottom of a coupe or martini glass.

Strain into the glass and garnish with the other cherry.


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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 202Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 0mgCarbohydrates: 0.9gFiber: 0gSugar: 0.1gProtein: 0g




Brandied Chocolate Manhattan - whiskey, brandied cherries, vermouth and chocolate coffee bitters




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44 thoughts on “Brandied Chocolate Manhattan – A Whiskey Cocktail

  1. I JUST had my first Manhattan last weekend! I think it would be amazing with the chocolate!!!

    Rosemond Cates

  2. Wow! Now that looks like one awesome drink! As soon as she turned 21, my oldest daughter took a bartending class just for fun. I’ll be sharing this Brandied Chocolate Manhattan recipe with her. Anything chocolate is a real attention grabber!

  3. Sounds very nice! I have never tried making cocktails before but I’ll give this a go! 🙂

    1. Why wait till Friday? The nice thing about the coffee and chocolate bitters is that you can make them yourself if you order a kit from Thistle and Vine Company!

  4. I’m going to have to show this one to my husband. A Manhattan is his favorite drink and he goes as far as canning his own brandied cherries, but I don’t think he’s ever made one with chocolate! Although I’ll probably be stuck listening to him talk about bitters for 15 minutes!…

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