1 1⁄2 oz Manzanilla sherry
3⁄4 oz Cynar
1 t Cassis
1 sli Orange (as garnish)
2 Olive (as garnish, on rim)

Stir with ice, strain over tonic, garnish.


In the last season of 30 Rock, Cooter Burger introduces Jack Donaghy to the Old Spanish, a cocktail of his own invention composed of red wine, tonic water, and olives. Later, Mad Men paid tribute by having unctuous ad man Ted Chaough order an Old Spanish and receive a drink matching that description. We’ve decided to imagine what that drink might have looked like if it were a true old style Spanish aperitivo rather than a clumsy disaster; a craft Old Spanish, if you like. Thus: sherry for wine and brine, Cynar for bitter, tonic for bubbles, cassis to round it all off. We like to imagine a Spanish Don Draper ordering one of these, in the afternoon of the dusty cantina, coolly lighting a cigarette, staring broodingly into the distance as ceiling fans spin lazily overhead and cantineros swat at flies, in the quiet years before the war.

Cocktail summary
Created by
Rafa García Febles, NYC, & Cooter Burger
Is the
author's original creation
Not yet rated
4 stars
(8 ratings)
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From other users
  • Easy drinking. Reminiscent of an Aperol Spritz, though it shares no ingredients. — ★★★★
  • Great aperitif. Good with raspberry syrup in place of cassis. — ★★★★★
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I love sherry based cocktails and this is a winner.  I tried it with both regular cynar and cynar 70 and prefer the former, but the latter is an option for those who prefer drier cocktails or with a sweeter sherry.  I used lustau sherry and clear creek cassis.