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Brandy Old Fashioned Sweet

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This Brandy Old Fashioned Sweet cocktail recipe is the beloved classic cocktail at Wisconsin supper clubs and local bars. Enjoy this brandy cocktail with the traditional cherry and citrus twist.

A glass of brandy old fashioned sweet has lots of ice and a maraschino cherry with orange twist for garnish.

Growing up in Milwaukee, a classic midwestern Brandy Old Fashioned Sweet was the cocktail of choice for an evening out. It would make a fun addition to your football party beverage station as we head into the fall season!

I'm a Milwaukee native and my husband hails from northern Minnesota.

Football season definitely finds us each craving the snacks, treats, and cocktails we enjoyed during football games back in the midwest.

While we were making the rounds all throughout Wisconsin and Minnesota for a family road trip, we stopped to visit some college friends and have lunch at The Old Fashioned in Madison, Wisconsin.

I had nearly forgotten all about Old Fashioned Sweets, a staple cocktail from my college days. It inspired me to recreate this recipe for our tailgating party.

Now you can learn how to make a brandy old fashioned just like the ones you'd find at a Wisconsin supper club.

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Why This is the Best Recipe

I grew up eating the boozy maraschino cherries from my grandparents' cocktails back when no one raised an eye brow at such things.

I think this is the best brandy old fashioned sweet recipe because:

  1. Classic Recipe: This tastes JUST like the old fashioneds I remember from the awesome Wisconsin bars back home.
  2. Perfect Girlie Drink: I'm not a beer drinker at all, this fall cocktail was the perfect alternative for football games and parties.
  3. Sweet, but Not TOO Sweet: Yes "sweet" is in the name, but this isn't a strawberry margarita or pina colada. The brandy and citrus definitely help tone things down.


Brandy Old Fashioned Sweet

If you want to make a real old fashioned, all you need is:

  • Brandy
  • Lemon Lime Soda: like Sprite or 7Up
  • Aromatic Bitters: like Angostura
  • Sugar
  • Fresh Orange
  • Jarred Maraschino Cherries

While there are many variations on Old Fashioneds, my favorite is made with brandy and mixed with lemon lime soda and a splash of grenadine.

The cocktail isn't too strong and is perfect for a hot football tailgate or for feeling warm and cozy if you're watching back at home.

It's not something you can really make in a big batch, but with such a short ingredient list, it is super easy to whip one up on demand for your guests.

My recipe makes enough for 2 servings at a crack.

Brandy Old Fashioned Sweet

How to Garnish an Old Fashioned

Is there anything better than a boozy cherry garnish on a cocktail??

I still remember my grandma and grandpa letting me eat their maraschino cherries all saturated in brandy when I was young.

The fresh oranges and bright red cherries make this such a fun cocktail to serve.

Brandy Old Fashioned Sweet

Serving Suggestions

If you're going to truly enjoy a brandy old fashioned sweet, I feel like you need to make one along with a cozy midwestern snack board or hearty dinner.

I spent my University of Wisconsin college years enjoying hot pretzels and raspberry mustard at a bar off the capitol square. It was our go-to bar food for good reason.

You could also make a batch of roasted sausages and potatoes, they pair so well with spicy mustard and an old fashioned.

Or for a football party snack, pair your old fashioned cocktail with a hot Swedish meatball sausage dip.

๐Ÿ“– Recipe

A glass of brandy old fashioned sweet has lots of ice and a maraschino cherry with orange twist for garnish.

Brandy Old Fashioned Sweet

5 from 1 vote
A classic midwestern cocktail. Brandy Old Fashioned Sweets are perfect for football games and entertaining.
TOTAL TIME 5 minutes
PREP TIME 5 minutes
YIELD 2 old fashioneds


  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 4 dashes aromatic bitters such as Angostura
  • 1 splash maraschino cherry juice
  • 1.5 ounces of brandy
  • 3 ounces lemon-lime soda
  • 2 orange slices
  • 2 maraschino cherries
  • ice cubes


  • In a tumbler combine sugar, bitters, cherry juice and brandy until the sugar has dissolved.
  • Stir in lemon lime soda. Pour over ice in two short ball glasses.
  • Garnish with cherry and orange slice.

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The photo collage shows a brandy old fashioned cocktail on top with a bowl of maraschino cherries and fresh orange slices on the bottom.
The photo collage shows the brandy old fashioned sweet with a cherry and orange garnish.


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