Chocolate Manhattan Cocktail Recipe

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Chocolate Manhattan Nutrition Facts





Alcohol %:28

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 7, 2024


The Chocolate Manhattan is a delightful twist on the classic Manhattan cocktail, which originated at the Manhattan Club in New York City in the early 1870s. This rich, indulgent version is perfect for those who enjoy a sweet touch to their cocktails. It's a favorite among chocolate lovers and those who appreciate a well-crafted cocktail with a unique spin.

How Chocolate Manhattan Tastes?

The Chocolate Manhattan is a harmonious blend of sweet, bitter, and strong. The sweetness of the chocolate liqueur balances the bitterness of the vermouth, while the whiskey provides a robust backbone. The result is a rich, velvety cocktail with a deep chocolate flavor and a hint of warmth from the whiskey.

Interesting facts about Chocolate Manhattan

  • The Chocolate Manhattan is a modern twist on the classic Manhattan cocktail.
  • It's a great choice for dessert or a nightcap.
  • The cocktail's chocolate flavor comes from chocolate liqueur, not actual chocolate.


Bourbon: (2 oz) The backbone of the cocktail, it adds that warm, rich, and slightly sweet flavor. Bourbon's subtle vanilla and oak notes dance with the chocolate. If you pour less, you're at a jazz concert without the sax - it just isn't the same. More, and your drink might become too boozy, overpowering the sweetness.

Alex Green

Sweet Vermouth: (1 oz) The silky sophisticate in the mix, it balances the bourbon with herbaceous sweetness. Too little and the drink loses complexity; too much, and it's like dousing your dessert in herb-infused syrup.

Mary Mitkina

Chocolate Liqueur: (1 oz) This is the twist; the star of your show! It transforms the classic Manhattan into a desserty delight. Skimp on it, and the chocolate curtain call fades. Overdo it, and it's more chocolate dip than cocktail.

Emma Rose

Angostura Bitters: (2 dashes) The spice rack of the cocktail world. Its herbal, spicy profile gives depth. Skip the bitters, and the cocktail becomes a one-dimensional sweet sipper. It's like a drum without a beat.

Alex Green

Cherry: (Garnish) The cherry on top! It's more than just an aesthetic flourish—it marries with the cocktail's flavors to create a grand finale with each sip. No cherry, and your cocktail is left undressed; it's a tuxedo without a tie.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Chocolate Manhattan Drink

  1. Fill a mixing glass with ice.
  2. Add the bourbon, sweet vermouth, chocolate liqueur, and Angostura bitters.
  3. Stir until well-chilled.
  4. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
  5. Garnish with a cherry.

Pro Tips

  • Use high-quality chocolate liqueur for the best flavor.
  • Chill your cocktail glass before serving for an extra touch of elegance.
  • Stir the cocktail gently to avoid diluting the flavors.

Perfect Pairings

  • Cheese Platter: The creamy and nutty flavors of cheeses like Brie, Gouda, and aged Cheddar pair beautifully with the rich and sweet notes of the Chocolate Manhattan.
  • Dark Chocolate Desserts: Enhance the chocolate notes of the cocktail by pairing it with dark chocolate truffles, chocolate cake, or brownies.
  • Smoked Meats: The smokiness of meats like smoked duck or brisket complements the deep, warm flavors of bourbon and the spiciness of the bitters.
  • Spiced Nuts: A bowl of roasted almonds or cashews with a sprinkling of cocoa powder or chili powder will echo the complexity of the cocktail.

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What you could change in Chocolate Manhattan

If you don't have chocolate liqueur, you can substitute it with crème de cacao. If bourbon is not available, rye whiskey can be used instead.

Explore all drinks starting with C here

And of course - twists🍹

  • Mint Chocolate Manhattan: Add 0.5 oz of crème de menthe to the mix for a refreshing minty twist. The aroma of mint will invite you to sip, and once you do, it's a harmonious ballet with chocolate and bourbon.
  • White Chocolate Manhattan: Substitute the chocolate liqueur with white chocolate liqueur for a sweeter, creamier experience. It's like drizzling white chocolate sauce over your favorite dessert. Bourbon takes a gentle backseat, letting white chocolate shine.
  • Spiced Manhattan: A dash of cinnamon syrup or a cinnamon stick can add a spicy kick. It's as if your Chocolate Manhattan got cozy with a fireplace on a cold winter night, giving you warmth from the inside out.

In case you forgot basics how to make Chocolate Manhattan

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

Insert the spoon into the glass until it touches the bottom. Keep the back of the spoon against the inside wall of the glass, and stir in a smooth, circular motion. The goal is to swirl the ice and ingredients together without churning or splashing.

Learn everything on how to stir

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 Chocolate Manhattan

Can this cocktail be made non-alcoholic?

Yes, you can replace the bourbon with a non-alcoholic substitute or just leave it out entirely. For the chocolate liqueur, you can use a non-alcoholic chocolate syrup or chocolate milk. Be aware these substitutions will change the taste and texture of the cocktail.

What other garnishes can I use for this cocktail?

While a cherry is traditionally used in this cocktail, you can also use an orange peel, chocolate shavings for a further chocolaty touch, or even a dash of whipped cream if you’re looking for an extra decadence.

Can I make this cocktail in a batch for a party?

Yes, you can multiply the recipe by the number of guests you expect and mix everything in a large pitcher or punch bowl. Just remember to add the bitters sparingly, as their flavor can easily dominate the drink.

Is it important to use a chilled glass?

A chilled glass can help keep your cocktail at the right temperature longer. However, it won't drastically affect the flavor if you choose not to chill the glass.

What is the best time to serve the Chocolate Manhattan?

The Chocolate Manhattan is a perfect after-dinner drink because of its sweet and decadent nature. It can also be served as a festive drink during holiday gatherings.

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