Black Velvet Sour Cocktail Recipe

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Black Velvet Sour Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 16, 2024


The Black Velvet Sour is a twist on the classic Whiskey Sour, incorporating the smoothness of Black Velvet Reserve Whisky. It's a cocktail that has been enjoyed in dimly lit speakeasies and upscale lounges alike. Its popularity lies in its balance of sweetness and acidity, making it a favorite among those who appreciate a well-crafted drink.

  • Originating from the whiskey sour tradition, this cocktail has evolved to include the velvety touch of Black Velvet Whisky.
  • It's often chosen by whiskey enthusiasts looking for a refreshing twist on their favorite spirit.
  • The addition of a maraschino cherry and lemon slice not only adds to the flavor but also to the visual appeal of the drink.

How Black Velvet Sour Tastes?

The Black Velvet Sour offers a harmonious blend of sweet and sour, with the rich, oaky undertones of Black Velvet Reserve Whisky. The sweet and sour mix cuts through the whisky's complexity, providing a refreshing tanginess that complements the smooth finish of the spirit. The maraschino cherry adds a hint of sweetness and the lemon a zesty brightness, creating a multi-layered taste experience.

Interesting facts about Black Velvet Sour

  • The Black Velvet brand was established in 1951 and has since become synonymous with smooth Canadian whisky.
  • The 'sour' in the cocktail's name refers to the sweet and sour mix, a common ingredient in many classic cocktails.
  • The cocktail's garnish, a maraschino cherry, has its origins in 19th century Italy.


Black Velvet Reserve Whisky

  • Why 2oz?: The 2oz serving is just right - it's the star of the show, providing a boozy kick and deep flavors without knocking your socks off. More might have you singing to the lampshade; less, and you'd barely taste it.
  • Flavor: Black Velvet has a mellow, smooth profile with a hint of spice - it's the velvet glove on the sour mix's iron fist.
  • No Whisky?: Skip it, and you have just sweet and sour. It's like Batman without his cape, not quite the same hero.
  • Alternatives: Swap for bourbon for a sweeter twist, or rye for an extra bite. Your cocktail, your rules!

Alex Green

Sweet And Sour Mix

  • Why 3oz?: This volume offers the perfect tanginess to balance and play well with the whisky. Too much, and you're puckering more than the first kiss; too little, and the drink falls flat.
  • Flavor: It's the sour to your sweet, the yin to your yang. That lip-smacking quality keeps you coming back for more.
  • No Mix?: The cocktail loses its 'sour' title and becomes a sadder, one-dimensional drink.
  • Alternatives: Fresh lemon juice and simple syrup will do the trick, creating an even fresher taste.

Emma Rose

Maraschino Cherry

  • Flavor: It's the cherry on top, quite literally! Adds a touch of sweetness and an eye-catching garnish.
  • No Cherry?: Not the end of the world, but that little extra pizzazz will be missed.

Mary Mitkina

Lemon Slice

  • Flavor: It's not just a pretty face; the lemon slice adds an extra zest and freshness to each sip.
  • No Lemon?: The drink still works but loses a bright, citrusy appeal.

Alex Green

Recipe. How to make Black Velvet Sour Drink

  1. Shake the Black Velvet Reserve Whisky and Sweet And Sour Mix with ice in a cocktail shaker.
  2. Strain the mixture into a glass filled with ice.
  3. Garnish with a slice of lemon and a maraschino cherry on top.

Pro Tips

  • For a more personalized touch, try making your own sweet and sour mix from scratch.
  • Chill the glass before serving to keep the cocktail colder for longer.
  • When garnishing, make sure the cherry and lemon slice are fresh for the best flavor and presentation.

Perfect Pairings

Food Pairings

  • Barbecue Ribs: The sweet and smoky flavors from barbecue sauce will complement the rich, velvet texture of the whisky.
  • Fried Chicken: The crispness of fried chicken can be a delightful contrast to the sour notes of the cocktail.
  • Cheese Platter: A platter with a variety of cheeses, especially aged ones like cheddar, will pair nicely with the complexity of the Black Velvet Sour.
  • Chocolate Desserts: Dark chocolate and this cocktail are a match made in heaven, with bitter and sweet notes playing off each other.

Drink Pairings

  • Stout Beer: If you're looking for a beer to accompany your Black Velvet Sour, a robust stout can balance the whisky sour's acidity.
  • Sparkling Water: For a non-alcoholic pairing, sparkling water with a twist of lemon complements the cocktail without overpowering its flavors.

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What you could change in Black Velvet Sour

  • Instead of Black Velvet Reserve Whisky, you can use another smooth Canadian whisky.
  • If you don't have sweet and sour mix, you can make your own by combining equal parts lemon juice and simple syrup.

Explore all drinks starting with B here

And of course - twists🍹

Black Velvet Ginger Sour

  • Ingredients:
    • Black Velvet Reserve Whisky: 2oz
    • Fresh Ginger Juice: 0.5oz
    • Simple Syrup: 0.5oz
    • Fresh Lemon Juice: 1.5oz
  • Recipe: Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a glass with ice.
  • Taste Change: Adds a spicy kick from ginger, transforming the cocktail into a zesty, warming concoction.

Velvet Apple Sour

  • Ingredients:
    • Black Velvet Reserve Whisky: 2oz
    • Apple Cider: 2oz
    • Lemon Juice: 1oz
  • Recipe: Combine ingredients in a shaker with ice, strain, and serve over ice.
  • Taste Change: It brings a sweet autumnal twist to the cocktail with hints of apple.

Black Velvet Elderflower Sour

  • Ingredients:
    • Black Velvet Reserve Whisky: 2oz
    • Elderflower Liqueur: 1oz
    • Sweet And Sour Mix: 2oz
    • Lemon Twist
  • Recipe: Shake whisky, elderflower liqueur, and sweet and sour mix with ice. Serve garnished with a lemon twist.
  • Taste Change: Introduces a floral and slightly sweet note that makes the cocktail more fragrant and sophisticated.

In case you forgot basics how to make Black Velvet Sour

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Black Velvet Sour

What glassware is best suited for serving a Black Velvet Sour?

A rocks glass or an old-fashioned glass is typically used for serving sours, including a Black Velvet Sour.

Can I make a large batch of Black Velvet Sour for a party?

Yes, you can scale up the recipe and mix a large batch in a pitcher. Just remember to add the ice shortly before serving to avoid dilution.

How can I adjust the Black Velvet Sour to make it less sweet?

You can reduce the amount of sweet and sour mix or increase the lemon's proportion to suit your taste for a less sweet cocktail.

Is there a non-alcoholic version of the Black Velvet Sour?

To make a non-alcoholic version, you can substitute the whisky with a non-alcoholic spirit or use a combination of tea and apple cider vinegar to mimic the whisky flavors.

What are the origins of the Sweet and Sour Mix used in many cocktails?

Sweet and Sour Mix, also known as Sour Mix, is a bar mixer that originated in the United States around the 1960s. It's traditionally made from approximately equal parts lemon or lime juice and simple syrup.

Could I use a flavored whisky in the Black Velvet Sour?

While traditionalist may prefer to stick with an unflavored whisky, you can experiment with flavored whiskies for a twist on the classic Black Velvet Sour taste.

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