The recipe I have for a manhattan cocktail calls for 2.5:.5:.5 Bourbon:dry vermouth:red vermouth.

Will mixing the dry and red vermouth together and storing before making the cocktails adversely affect the taste of the cocktail? Is it safe to pre-mix and store constituent alcohols? If so, for how long?

1 Answer 1


It would certainly be safe. Vermouth is a fortified wine, meaning that it is wine with added alcohol. The added alcohol gives the vermouth a much longer shelf life, even at room temperature after the bottle is opened. You can store open vermouth for at least several months without any discernible loss of quality. It will continue to be safe indefinitely as long as the bottle is kept closed, keeping the alcohol from evaporating.

That said, I can see no reason why two vermouths couldn't be mixed in advance. As a matter of fact, you could add the bourbon too. Perhaps some kind of alcohol super-taster could tell the difference, but I sincerely doubt that any mere mortal would be able to tell the difference between a just-mixed Manhattan and one that was mixed 3 months ago (assuming, of course, an airtight container).

  • Even if you keep it in an air-tight container, it'll oxidize. I doubt you could keep it for months without noticing a difference. It's only a quality issue and not a safety one, though.
    – user5561
    Jan 8, 2014 at 21:16
  • @user5561, How would mixing the cocktail and storing it in an air-tight container be different than storing opened, half empty bottles of the three different ingredients?
    – Jolenealaska
    Jan 8, 2014 at 22:22
  • Mixing it is going to introduce a lot more oxygen. Although storing half-empty bottles exposes them to oxygen as well - I think you'd probably not have any trouble differentiating between a fresh bottle of vermouth and one stored half-empty for a few months.
    – user5561
    Jan 9, 2014 at 1:22
  • @user5561 I don't drink vermouth, I only use it in cooking. If oxidation really is a factor, than storing it mixed in one bottle would require fewer of these :) cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/37836/…
    – Jolenealaska
    Jan 9, 2014 at 1:28
  • You could probably pour them together ahead of time - in fact, storing them together in a bottle that was completely filled would probably be better than storing them in two half-empty bottles. It would definitely be a bad idea to mix them at all vigorously, though, since you're trying to exclude as much oxygen as possible.
    – user5561
    Jan 9, 2014 at 1:39

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