Bar Manager Charles Filippazzo mixes up Insignia's take on an old fashioned.

The old-fashioned is a go-to cocktail every bartender knows how to concoct. 

While cocktail traditionalists prefer the typical ingredients in the old-fashioned, mixologists are always testing new recipes — and sometimes, what they come up with satisfies traditionalists and imbibers looking for a twist on the classic. 

“We really wanted to take a classic cocktail and make it our own, put a different spin on it as we do a lot with our food menu as well,” says Charles Filippazzo, general and bar manager at Insignia Prime Steak and Sushi in Smithtown.

He came up with the cocktail out of “pure necessity,” he says. 

“My buddy had invited a few people over to his house during a big winter storm and a lot more people came than he expected,” Filippazzo says. “He eventually ran out of drinks so I dug around in his fridge and I found this huge jar of ginger-honey jam. I threw it in with some water and boiled it down and mixed it with bourbon and it tasted pretty good and kept the party going. Eventually, I mixed that concoction with my love for old-fashioneds and substituted the jam for ginger liqueur and clover honey.”

The cocktail is made with Bulleit Bourbon, Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur, local honey, and muddled cherry and orange. 

“It’s pretty simple, but it’s tasty and refreshing and you can drink it all year round,” Filippazzo says. 

Insignia introduced the cocktail last winter. Since then, it’s been the most popular drink on the restaurant’s cocktail list. 

“Our guests love it, nobody ever orders just one,” he says. “We even get a lot of requests from guests having their weddings here to have it as their signature cocktail for their special day.”

Insignia Prime Steak & Sushi is located at 610 Smithtown Bypass in Smithtown. It can be reached at 631-656-8100 or insigniasteakhouse.com 

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