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Whisky Sour

The whisky sour cocktail is one of the most famous whisky cocktails, which was probably first prepared in the USA in 1850. It is considered one of the “Top Twenty Classic Drinks” and still enjoys great popularity today. The whisky sour is originally derived from the brandy sour. However, due to the rise in quality of American whiskey, the recipe slowly changed to the Whisky Sour.

Sours can be mixed with any type of spirit. The taste of the finished drink is always influenced by the base spirit. The ratio between sweet and sour can be controlled with the sugar and lemon juice content. However, the Bourbon Whiskey Sour is considered the most popular of these drinks. Discover our simple recipe and prepare the whiskey sour at home!

Whisky Sour Cocktail Recipe

  • 5 cl bourbon whiskey
  • 3 cl lemon juice
  • 2 cl sugar syrup

Step by Step Guide

  1. Pour all ingredients together with ice into a cocktail shaker.
  2. Shake the shaker well.
  3. Strain into a tumbler glass.
  4. Strain and serve.
whisky sour cocktail
Recipe by Tim


To prepare the Whiskey Sour, put all the ingredients and ice in a cocktail shaker and shake well for about 20 seconds. This mix is then strained into a tumbler filled with ice. The Whiskey Sour can now be garnished with an orange slice and a cocktail cherry. Alternatively, you can also garnish this drink with an orange zest. Then serve and enjoy.

Bar accessories

  • Tumbler
  • Ice cube
  • Cocktail shaker

Taste profile


52 Reviews

The Whiskey Sour tastes sweet, sour and spicy like bourbon whiskey. It is particularly important with the Whiskey Sour that the ratio between sugar and lemon juice is right. Otherwise the drink can quickly become too sweet or too sour. With the right mixing ratio, however, the drink impresses with a perfectly balanced ratio between sweet and sour. The mildly fruity taste makes the alcoholic taste fade into the background.


Fresh fruit juices

Again, we recommend using fresh, organically grown fruit for this mixed drink. The juice of these fruits is usually much more aromatic and intense than store-bought. You can also add a lemon zest or slice to a drink without a guilty conscience.

Rye Whiskey

You can make this cocktail with rye whiskey instead of bourbon whiskey. The flavour of Rye is much more edgy and intense. This gives the whole cocktail an intense flavour. Just try it yourself and convince yourself of its special taste.

Make your own sugar syrup

If you prepare a whisky sour, we recommend using homemade sugar syrup. This is usually much cheaper than bought syrup and at least as good in taste. You can find a short tutorial on how to do this in our blog: Make your own sugar syrup.

History of the Whiskey Sour

The whiskey sour was first drunk around 1850. It has developed into a simple and indispensable classic in the cocktail world. All you need is a good bourbon whiskey, sugar syrup and a lemon. You can already mix one of the most popular cocktails ever. If the ingredients are well balanced and the drink has been well shaken and chilled, you can serve this cocktail just about any time.

Sour cocktails are among the oldest cocktails of all and have delighted several generations of cocktail lovers. Sours were particularly popular in America at the time of the prohibition of alcohol. There, this type of cocktail was the star of “forbidden and hidden enjoyment”. The reason for this: at first glance, sour drinks do not look like alcoholic beverages. In some cases, Canadian whiskeys were used to make them, which were “diluted” with Scotch whisky due to their lack of aromatic depth.

The family of sours

If you are overwhelmed by too large a menu in a cocktail bar, you should definitely go for classics. For all you inexperienced cocktail drinkers, “classics” are, simply put, those drinks whose names you’ve heard somewhere before. They also give bartenders a chance to show off all their skills. A classic is usually mixed from just a few ingredients, but they have to be precisely matched down to the millimetre, otherwise the mixing ratio and the taste will not be right in the end.

A drink from the cocktail type “Sour” is a predecessor of many cocktails known today. They consist of only three basic ingredients: A spirit, sugar and citrus acid or “spirit, citrus and sugar”. This is English and means something like alcohol, lemon and sugar. Many famous drinks have developed on the basis of these sours, for example the Sidecar Cocktail or the Margarita. These basic ingredients have remained the same until today. The whiskey sour is still popular in America today. The Southern drink is mixed from American whiskey, which harmonises very well with sweet and sour flavours.

The difference to the Eggon

Eggons are among the oldest types of cocktail and are said to have been mentioned for the first time in American documents as early as 1775. As the name suggests (“Egg” is English and means egg), an egg is used in every Eggon cocktail, along with milk, sugar and a spirit (whisky, rum, sherry or brandy). In the past, the word “noggin” was often used. This meant something like “small drinking vessel”.

Eggons can be served cold or warm. In the warm version, the milk is first heated and then mixed with the other ingredients. In the cold version, all the ingredients are simply stirred together. The whisky sour is often mistakenly compared to an eggnog, as an egg is sometimes used in it. However, no sweet and creamy ingredients such as cream or milk are used. This type of cocktail “Eggon” never really caught on. Yet the recipes are usually very tasty and varied.

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Whisky Sour - FAQ

What does the Whisky Sour Cocktail taste like?

In terms of taste, the Whisky Sour is an interplay of sweet and sour. You can also recognise the harmonious whisky taste. Therefore, use the indicated units of measurement so that the drink can develop its excellent taste.

What is a Whisky Sour?

The Whisky Sour is a world-famous American whisky cocktail that can be ordered in bars, clubs and even restaurants. It is characterised by a harmonious taste of whisky, sugar syrup and lemon juice.

How do you prepare a cocktail?

To prepare it, put the sugar syrup and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker and shake it well. Strain the drink into a tumbler filled with ice cubes and strain.

Who invented the drink?

The inventor of the cocktail is not known. However, ancient records indicate that the drink was prepared as early as 1850. Since then, it has become one of the most popular cocktails of all and can now be ordered in various cocktail bars, restaurants and clubs.

Can you also use a Scotch or Irish whiskey?

Yes, you can theoretically use any whiskey in this cocktail. However, bourbon whiskey fits perfectly into the drink due to its particularly edgy flavour. These flavours harmonise best with the sweet and fruity ingredients. So try it with a different whiskey and who knows, maybe you’ll taste the Irish Sour even better.