New York Sour

nysour cocktail recipe

Recipe: New York Sour (serves two)

  • 3 oz. bourbon
  • 1 1/2 oz. lemon juice
  • 2/3 oz. maple syrup (or 1 oz. simple syrup)
  • two 1/2-oz. pours red wine

Pour bourbon, lemon juice, and maple syrup into an ice-filled cocktail shaker. Shake. Pour into ice-filled rocks glasses. Top each glass with 1/2 oz. red wine by slowly pouring the wine over the back of a spoon.


We spent the weekend wine tasting in the Santa Ynez Valley, so it seemed appropriate to make a cocktail involving wine. The New York sour is essentially a whiskey sour with a float of wine on top. It’s an old recipe: apparently it dates to the late 19th century and was invented in Chicago before becoming popular in New York. It’s not only a beautiful drink, but a surprisingly good one. There’s a synergy of oak, maple, vanilla, and fruit flavors from the bourbon, wine, and maple syrup. You can enjoy it as-is or stir it up; we prefer it without stirring.

The bourbon. We like to use Maker’s 46.

The wine. You can use whatever red wine you have on hand; we used a Louis Martini Cabernet.

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