Sweet Tea Old Fashioned Cocktail

Sweet Tea Old Fashioned Cocktail: An Old Fashioned Cocktail, with a twist! This classic cocktail has been given a swanky southern makeover with the addition of sweet tea.

Classic Old Fashioned Cocktail | ASpicyPerspective.com #cocktails #ryangosling

Friends, you are in for a treat, because my hubby Lieutenant Dan, is sharing one of his locally famous cocktails today…

Lt Dan:  My great grandmother is the person who taught me to drink. (Bet you don’t hear that every day!) This post, in some strange way, will tie her and Ryan Gosling together. Seriously.

Grandma Rosie was born sometime around 1910, I think.

She was a super cool cat; one of my most favorite people. She passed away a few years ago at 97 years young, but lived those years to the fullest. I have extremely fond memories of spending time with her, especially the last 20 years of her life.

Grandma Rosie and my great grandfather came to America on the boat. They moved here from Hungary and started a life together. In her 20s and 30s she was an executive secretary (administrative assistant for you politically correct types) for the Studebaker Company. She would weave me exciting tales of train rides to Chicago, swing dancing with my great grandfather, and life in general during those times.

What I remember most is how she talked about cocktails – especially the classics.

Sweet Tea Old Fashioned Cocktail | ASpicyPerspective.com #cocktails #ryangosling

Martini lunches, Manhattan’s at the dance club, Gimlets at home on the weekend – this was part of the culture during those times.

My earliest memory of Grandma Rosie was her insistence of making me a Shirley Temple every time I visited her house when I was younger. The Shirley Temple’s grew into Martini’s when I turned 18 and Grandma Rosie insisted that I know how to make a “proper classic cocktail”. My love of cocktails was born at that moment. I’m not sure if it was the cocktails themselves, or the wonderful memory of Grandma Rosie.

She was a stickler for the classics and that they were always prepared properly.

After college and married, I still visited Grandma Rosie every time I went North to see my family. We would go on a date to a little Mexican restaurant we both enjoyed. We would drink margaritas, eat quesadillas, and she would tell stories about the old times, always interjecting a “new” classic cocktail recipe for me.

The Old Fashioned Cocktail with Sweet Tea Vodka | ASpicyPerspective.com #Cocktails #RyanGosling

So this month’s Cocktail with Lieutenant Dan is a spin on the classic Old Fashioned Cocktail.

While Mrs. Spicy and I were watching the movie “Crazy, Stupid, Love” a few months ago, I noticed Ryan Gosling making a cocktail I actually was not familiar with. It was an Old Fashioned Cocktail with bourbon, orange, and sugar cubes, and it looked awesome.

I proceeded to test it at home, trying different bourbons each time. I even tried one at a restaurant in Raleigh, NC that had bacon infused bourbon. (Which was awesome by the way.) Yet now that we are officially southerners, I thought I would put a little southern spin on this great classic.

So without further ado – I give you the Sweet Tea Old Fashioned Cocktail. I’ll be drinking one on my porch swing, thinking of Grandma Rosie…


Sweet Tea Old Fashioned Cocktail

Yield: 1

Prep Time:3 minutes

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  • 1 sugar cube
  • 2 dashes of bitters
  • 1 lemon wedge/slice
  • 1 orange wedge/slice
  • 1-2 Maraschino cherries
  • 1 ounce club soda
  • 2.5 ounce Fire Fly “Sweet Tea” Vodka
  • Ice


  1. Put the sugar cube into the bottom of the glass and pour 2 dashes of bitters over the top. Muddle to dissolve the sugar cube.
  2. Fill the glass with ice, then squeeze the lemon and orange wedges into the glass. Keep the wedges to garnish the glass.
  3. Add the club soda and Fire Fly Vodka. Stir. Rub the lemon wedge around the rim, and garnish with the lemon wedge, orange wedge and a cherry.
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posted in Beverages
last updated July 2, 2018

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42 comments on “Sweet Tea Old Fashioned Cocktail

  1. Kristiposted December 6, 2014 at 1:46 pm Reply

    Looks PERFECT.

    I am going to try it as an “Old Fashioned Holiday Punch” for my holiday party!
    Any suggestions for a make ahead batch?


  2. Pingback: Villeroy & Boch American Bar Cocktail Recipe — Villeroy & Boch Blog

  3. Lisa | With Style and Graceposted September 22, 2012 at 12:31 pm Reply

    my husband LOVES sweet tea vodka. his isn’t this fancy, usually it’s mixed with lemonade, but we might be able to change that with this ;)

  4. Matt 'mmwine' Horbundposted September 21, 2012 at 8:35 pm Reply

    Awesome update to a classic. You did a GREAT job with the photos! Really made me want to say pour me another!

  5. Tickled Redposted September 21, 2012 at 8:46 am Reply

    Love, love the southern twist!

  6. mjskitposted September 20, 2012 at 4:41 pm Reply

    Your grandmother is proof that alcohol is good for you – 97!!! Loved the story! And, I love this drink. I’ve never heard of Sweet Tea Vodka but we do have a great liquor store nearby! Thanks for sharing this creative and tasty cocktail!

  7. Angieposted September 20, 2012 at 9:49 am Reply

    I just learned how to make this a few months ago. It’s great!

  8. Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabblesposted September 19, 2012 at 8:57 pm Reply

    A great cocktail is something I’m becoming more and more appreciative of. Mixology is truly an art. I love this story, and this cocktail!

  9. Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchenposted September 19, 2012 at 1:40 am Reply

    Aw what a great story, I bet she had some pretty amazing cocktail and stories to share.

  10. Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.posted September 18, 2012 at 3:51 pm Reply

    Love this post! Great story. And I would be all over this drink! I love that vodka!!

  11. Lizvcposted September 18, 2012 at 2:12 pm Reply

    Thank you! Obviously, I didn’t realize that…I need to investigate this more closely! ;-)

    • Sommerposted September 18, 2012 at 3:27 pm Reply

      No worries! I need to clarify that.

  12. Lizvcposted September 18, 2012 at 8:55 am Reply

    Did I miss it? I don’t see the sweet tea listed. Do you just add as much as you want?

    • Sommerposted September 18, 2012 at 11:40 am Reply

      The sweet tea is actually in the vodka. :)

  13. Chung-Ah | Damn Deliciousposted September 17, 2012 at 10:56 pm Reply

    What an awesome makeover! Great story, great post, and awesome drink – would it be wrong to drink this during work hours? :)

  14. Kiran @ KiranTarun.composted September 17, 2012 at 8:17 pm Reply

    Love family stories and histories!

    And of course, a good old-fashioned cocktail with it ;)

  15. najwa kronfelposted September 17, 2012 at 7:01 pm Reply

    I could use a drink like that right now, it looks delicious!

  16. Paula - bell'alimentoposted September 17, 2012 at 6:28 pm Reply

    This is right up my alley!

  17. Aldy @ Al Dente Gourmetposted September 17, 2012 at 6:06 pm Reply

    Loving this! Will have to try it :)

    Hugs <3

  18. Christineposted September 17, 2012 at 3:50 pm Reply

    You and Lieutenant Dan need to try the “hard” tea at Corner Kitchen. It is so delish. It also has the firefly vodka as one of the ingredients. Yummmy. Thanks for sharing this one. -can’t wait to try it. :)

    • Sommerposted September 17, 2012 at 4:08 pm Reply

      And thank YOU, Christine. I’ll make sure to order that next time we’re in!

  19. Tricia @ Saving room for dessertposted September 17, 2012 at 2:23 pm Reply

    I love the story about his grandmother. I had a mammaw like that – still miss her! This cocktail sounds wonderful. Very nice indeed!

  20. Jeanetteposted September 17, 2012 at 1:51 pm Reply

    I love hearing your memories of Grandma Rosie and how she talked so much about cocktails! Beautiful photos!

  21. Julia {The Roasted Root}posted September 17, 2012 at 12:48 pm Reply

    Thanks for sharing, Lt. Dan! I love sweet tea and I know from experience that a sweet tea cocktail is nothing but fuuuuuun! :) I’ve never tried one like your recipe, so I’m thrilled to whip up a batch of sweet tea and try it out!

  22. RavieNomNomsposted September 17, 2012 at 12:47 pm Reply

    Such a cute story and what fabulous pictures!!

  23. vianneyposted September 17, 2012 at 11:43 am Reply

    loving grandma rosie~~ What a creative coktail. thanks Lt dan!!

  24. Barbara | Creative Culinaryposted September 17, 2012 at 12:40 pm Reply

    I love an Old Fashioned I won’t deny but mostly this reminded me of my sweet Grandma. She wasn’t much of a drinker but was German through and through so her drink of choice was beer. She would open a bottle and pour a bit and then put that bottle back in the fridge for another day…always cracked me up!

    Gorgeous photos…makes me want to try and take a sip!

  25. Averie @ Averie Cooksposted September 17, 2012 at 11:19 am Reply

    I really hope it’s 5 o clock somewhere because this looks delish to me – at 10am. Lol

  26. MIss @ Miss in the Kitchenposted September 17, 2012 at 10:46 am Reply

    I loved Crazy, Stupid Love and this cocktail too! So perfectly southern!

  27. claire @ the realistic nutritionistposted September 17, 2012 at 9:48 am Reply

    The only thing better than sweet tea is BOOZY TEA!

  28. Cassieposted September 17, 2012 at 9:12 am Reply

    My husband would love this one, Sommer! These photos are gorgeous, too!

  29. Karen Sueposted September 17, 2012 at 8:57 am Reply

    I was excited to see this recipe. I too lived in Wisconsin where Old Fashions are VERY popular. They don’t make them in Minnesota or North Dakota (where I now reside) When we go out, we teach the bartenders how to make them. When we have company we offer up Old Fashions and everyone loves them. Now we have another one to offer.

    • Sommerposted September 17, 2012 at 9:07 am Reply

      Karen, I had no idea they were so popular in Wisconsin! I’d love to here what you think of this version. :)

  30. Alison @ Ingredients, Inc.posted September 17, 2012 at 8:32 am Reply

    I must try this! Love!

  31. DessertForTwoposted September 17, 2012 at 8:03 am Reply

    This sounds absolutely delicious! I really enjoyed reading about your great grandma! She sounds like one cool lady :)

  32. Beverlyposted September 17, 2012 at 7:49 am Reply

    I love the story! As a matter of fact, my grandmother used to drink old fashioneds, and we are southerners, so I’ll have to make this in tribute to her!

  33. [email protected]posted September 17, 2012 at 7:28 am Reply

    I just fell in love with Grandma Rosie!
    And the photos blew me away…gorgeous!

  34. Kiersten @ Oh My Veggiesposted September 17, 2012 at 7:26 am Reply

    When I lived in Wisconsin, Old Fashioneds were a BIG DEAL there–such a great idea to give it a Southern twist!

  35. Ali | Gimme Some Ovenposted September 17, 2012 at 7:08 am Reply

    Wow – great photos! I would totally take one of these. :)

  36. Kelseyposted September 17, 2012 at 6:49 am Reply

    My husband is the Old Fashioned drinker in our home, but with a sweet tea twist I’ll be joining in!

  37. Brian @ A Thought For Foodposted September 17, 2012 at 6:44 am Reply

    This looks freakin’ amazing and I love the idea of including sweet tea!

  38. shelly (cookies and cups)posted September 17, 2012 at 6:38 am Reply

    I have been obsessed with trying that cocktail since I saw that movie too!!!
    This looks perfect :)