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Rob Roy Drink

The Rob Roy drink, a timeless classic, offers a journey into sophisticated flavors and rich history. Hailing from the late 19th century, this Scotch-based marvel resembles the famous Manhattan but has a unique Scottish flair.

Rob roy in a frosty glass with a maraschino cherry in it
Photo Credit: Dishes Delish.

A balanced mix of Scotch whisky, sweet vermouth, and a hint of Angostura bitters creates a bold and elegant drink. Perfect for an upscale evening event or a relaxed night at home, the Rob Roy isn’t just a cocktail; it’s a luxurious experience to savor.

The Rob Roy is a classic cocktail like the Manhattan mentioned above. More classic cocktails include the martini, gimlet, and old-fashioned.

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The history of the Rob Roy

The inception of the Rob Roy coincided with the premiere of an operetta named “Rob Roy,” which was being shown in New York at the time. The operetta is based on the life of Robert Roy MacGregor, a Scottish folk hero akin to Robin Hood. The opera was a significant hit, and the cocktail was created as a tribute to this Scottish hero.

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Helpful tips

  • The choice of Scotch whiskey significantly impacts the flavor of your Rob Roy. Opt for a high-quality blended scotch or single malt that you enjoy drinking.
  • Traditionally, the Rob Roy is made with sweet vermouth, but you can tailor it to your taste. For a drier version, use dry vermouth, or for a balanced profile, mix half sweet and half dry vermouth.
  • Start with how I make the cocktail. It’s not exactly a 2:1 scotch-to-vermouth ratio, but it’s close. Feel free to adjust the proportions to suit your preference, whether you like it stronger or more mellow.
  • Stirring the cocktail with ice, rather than shaking, ensures a smooth, clear drink without the extra dilution or air bubbles that shaking can cause. I’m using my cocktail shaker, but you can use a mixing glass.
  • Serve your Rob Roy in a chilled glass to keep it refreshingly cool. Fill the glass with ice and water while you prepare the drink, then empty it before pouring. Or place the glass in the freezer for at least ten minutes before starting the recipe.
  • A dash of Angostura bitters adds complexity to the cocktail. Don’t overdo it; a little goes a long way in providing that hint of spice and depth.
  • A classic Rob Roy is garnished with a maraschino cherry. Rinse the cherry before adding it to your cocktail. You don’t want the sweetness of the syrup in the drink.
  • For a twist, try twisting the lemon peel and expressing the oils over the drink for a hint of citrus aroma.
  • For a smokier variant, use a peated Scotch whisky. It adds a distinctive, smoky character to your Rob Roy.
  • While traditionally served up (without ice), you can also serve it on the rocks in an old-fashioned glass if you prefer a cooler and more diluted drink.
A reddish cocktail in a chilled martini glass with coasters in the back
Photo Credit: Dishes Delish.

How to make a Rob Roy Cocktail

Pre-step

Get a cocktail shaker and fill it halfway with ice. I’m going to stir the cocktail to combine it, but I still use the shaker as the receptacle.

Get a measuring glass and a martini glass.

After measuring out the ingredients, add them to the shaker.

Step one

Gather the ingredients: Monkey Shoulder scotch, sweet vermouth, and bitters. Add a maraschino cherry for garnish.

Scotch, bitters and maraschino cherries in the background
Photo Credit: Dishes Delish.

Step two

Measure out 2.5 ounces of the scotch. (A)

Step three

Measure out 1 ounce of sweet vermouth. (B)

Measure out scotch and sweet vermouth
Photo Credit: Dishes Delish.

Step four

Get the Angostura bitters (C) and shake three drops into the shaker. (D)

Left - a bottle of bitters. Right - a shaker with the cocktail in it with a cocktail spoon
Photo Credit: Dishes Delish.

Step five

Stir briskly for approximately 5 seconds.

Step six

Take your chilled glass out of the freezer. Place the lid on the shaker, strain the cocktail, and pour it into the glass. Add the cherry to the drink.

A frosty martini glass with the cocktail in it along with a cherry
Photo Credit: Dishes Delish.

Look at the frost on that glass!

Overhead view of the reddish drink with a cherry in it
Photo Credit: Dishes Delish.

I hope you enjoyed this Rob Roy drink recipe. It’s tasty and a favorite of my uncles.

And as always, may all your dishes/drinks be delish!

If you’ve tried this recipe, I’d love to know your thoughts in the comments below. I love hearing from you! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOKTWITTERINSTAGRAM, and PINTEREST to see more of my delicious food and delightful cocktails!

Rob Roy in a martini glass with a cherry in it

Roaring Rob Roy Cocktail

This Classic Rob Roy recipe is both delicious and easy to make!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Cocktail
Cuisine: Cocktails
Keyword: rob roy cocktail
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1 cocktail
Calories: 214kcal

Ingredients

Garnish

  • maraschino cherry

Instructions

  • Fill a cocktail shaker just under half full with ice.
  • Add scotch and sweet vermouth, and shake three drops of bitters in the shaker.
    2.5 ounces scotch whiskey, 1 ounce sweet vermouth, 3 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Stir the mixture with a cocktail spoon for 5 – 10 seconds.
  • Get a martini glass out of the freezer. Cap the shaker and strain the liquid into the glass.
  • Add the cherry to the glass.
    maraschino cherry
  • Sip, smile, enjoy.
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Notes

Helpful tips

  • The choice of Scotch whiskey significantly impacts the flavor of your Rob Roy. Opt for a high-quality blended scotch or single malt that you enjoy drinking.
  • Traditionally, the Rob Roy is made with sweet vermouth, but you can tailor it to your taste. For a drier version, use dry vermouth, or for a balanced profile, mix half sweet and half dry vermouth.
  • Start with how I make the cocktail. It’s not exactly a 2:1 scotch-to-vermouth ratio, but it’s close. Feel free to adjust the proportions to suit your preference, whether you like it stronger or more mellow.
  • Stirring the cocktail with ice, rather than shaking, ensures a smooth, clear drink without the extra dilution or air bubbles that shaking can cause.
  • Serve your Rob Roy in a chilled glass to keep it refreshingly cool. Fill the glass with ice and water while you prepare the drink, then empty it before pouring. Or place the glass in the freezer for at least ten minutes before starting the recipe.
  • A dash of Angostura bitters adds complexity to the cocktail. Don’t overdo it; a little goes a long way in providing that hint of spice and depth.
  • A classic Rob Roy is garnished with a maraschino cherry. Rinse the cherry before adding it to your cocktail. You don’t want the sweetness of the syrup in the drink.
  • For a twist, try twisting the lemon peel and expressing the oils over the drink for a hint of citrus aroma.
  • For a smokier variant, use a peated Scotch whisky. It adds a distinctive, smoky character to your Rob Roy.
  • While traditionally served up (without ice), you can also serve it on the rocks in an old-fashioned glass if you prefer a cooler and more diluted drink.

Nutrition

Serving: 1cocktail | Calories: 214kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g
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From lighting up stages with her BA in theater to food journalist, Elaine Benoit's journey is a testament to passion's transformative power. As the CEO of Dishes Delish, she offers a blend of healthy, comforting recipes and exquisitely crafted cocktails. Beyond the kitchen, Elaine voiced her culinary adventures on her podcast, "Dishing," and co-owns Food Blogger Help, extending her expertise to guide budding food bloggers to success. Whether it's for a heartwarming dish or insights into food blogging, Elaine's diverse experiences make her a beacon in the culinary digital landscape.

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