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Cocktail stories: Old Fashioned and Charming, Ruby

Copenhagen bar Ruby adds a warming wintry spin to a traditional Old Fashioned, with butter- and jasmine-tea-washed Rémy Martin playing a starring role.

*This feature was first published in the December 2022 issue of The Spirits Business magazine.

Ruby was founded in 2007 in Copenhagen, Denmark, and was intended to be an international‐style cocktail bar, but is “very Scandinavian in design”, explains Michael Hajiyianni, its general manager.

The Old Fashioned and Charming is a recently introduced winter serve offered by the venue.

“We always have a twist on an Old Fashioned; it’s become somewhat of a staple,” Hajiyianni explains. The tipple has been a hit at Ruby “from the moment it came onto the menu”.

“Previously, it has been made with American whiskey, but we wanted to make one with Cognac to give more balance to our menu this season,” Hajiyianni added. Made using butter, which adds a “rich texture” to the drink, the addition of Champagne results in a touch of dryness on the palate.

“The jasmine adds a floral finish,” Hajiyianni continues. “We use Peychaud’s Bitters as the anise flavour, which pairs really well with the Cognac and jasmine.”

Luckily, customers don’t have to rush to the venue to get a chance to try the serve – it’ll likely be left on the winter menu beyond the end of the season.

“We have received great feedback for the Old Fashioned and Charming, and it’s great to highlight Cognac in this style of drink. It’s perfect for the Sazerac drinker, also.”

The name of the “big seller” was inspired by the team’s trip to Paris, and how charmed they were by the city.

With no garnishes or over‐the‐top flair, the cocktail is “very stripped back in presentation”, Hajiyianni explains.

“We tried garnishing it with lemon peel and orange peel, but we found it overpowered the jasmine and became unnecessary.

“We don’t like to garnish drinks unless there’s a purpose to it, and we won’t garnish just because the classics have a certain garnish. We look at each drink with a fresh approach each time.”

For more acclaimed serves to craft from your own home, check out the Flying Dutchmen’s Trebol serve covered in the November issue.

Old Fashioned and Charming

Old Fashioned
Michael Hajiyianni is the general manager of Ruby


60ml Butter-and-jasmine-tea‐washed Rémy Martin VSOP

2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters

10ml Champagne cordial


Add all ingredients to a mixing vessel and stir for 20 seconds before pouring over a block of ice.

For the butter‐ and jasmine tea‐washed Rémy Martin: 125g Butter 700ml Rémy Martin VSOP

Melt butter until it becomes dark, then add to Rémy Martin. Put into the freezer so the butter solidifies.

Strain through a coffeefilter then add the equivalent of 1% of this liquid’s weight in jasmine tea, and infuse for one hour before straining.

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