Whiskey Fizz – Classic Recipe & History

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Whiskey Fizz

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Course: DrinksCuisine: American






Total time



Learn how to make the a Whiskey Fizz.1


  • 1 Whole 1 Egg White

  • 2/3 oz 2/3 Lemon Juice

  • 2/3 oz 2/3 Simple Syrup

  • 2 oz 2 Bourbon

  • 1.5 oz 1.5 Soda Water


  • Technique: Saxe Soda Shake
  • Combine all ingredients except for the soda water in a cocktail shaker.
  • Add one medium or two small ice cubes to the cocktail shaker and shake till the ice has fully melted.
  • Without a strainer, pour the chilled and aerated drink into a collins glass.
  • Slowly pour the soda water in, and the bubbles from the water will expand all bubbles in the drink to form a large foam head.

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The History Of The Whiskey Fizz.

First appearing in the 1887 edition of the Bartenders Guide by Jerry Thomas, the whiskey fizz is a fantastic cocktail. A combination of a whiskey sour with egg whites and a whiskey daisy, the whiskey fizz is both lights, airy and refreshing.

What Does The Whiskey Fizz Taste Like?

The taste of a whiskey fizz is like a mousse whiskey sour. Incredible, and the texture feels like the first few sips of a tap served Guinness. The egg foam gives a velvet texture similar to nitrogen bubbles, but the soda water adds a refreshing carbonated beverage feel. I believe the tongue cannot distinguish bubbles below 30 microns, which gives a fine egg foam a velvety texture in cocktails. Above 30 microns, bubbles have a more refreshing texture, which the soda water provides to the cocktail. Combine those with a classic whiskey sour, and you have one of the best-tasting cocktails.

How To Get Great Foam On Cocktails With Egg Whites.

Egg Whites are challenging to get right in cocktails. Everyone struggles with them at some point, and bartenders search for any way to make whipping them into a fluffy meringue easier. Henry Ramos hired “shaker boys” to shake for him. Some use the dry shake or reverse dry shake, others swear by only using one large ice cube, and some say you have to shake till your arms fall off. The method I like is called the Saxe Shake, and De Forest Saxe invented it in the 1880s.

The Saxe Shake is largely unknown in the cocktail world because De Forest Saxe was a soda fountain operator in Chicago, Illinois. His 1890 book “Saxe’s New Guide Hints to Soda Water Dispensers” details his shaking technique for egg drinks that produces the best foam and can be accomplished with minimal effort. Saxe states to shake drinks with eggs with only one chestnut-sized ice cube. An Ice cube from a standard ice tray is about chestnut-sized, so one or two small cubes will work. Then shake until the ice fully melts, and pour into the serving glass without straining. The small amount of ice is just enough to cool and dilute the drink, and since there are no remaining bits of ice left in the shaker, there is nothing to strain. Passing the mixture through a strainer destroys most of the bubbles you worked so hard to make. As you add soda water, the escaping carbon dioxide fills the tiny bubbles in the drink, forcing them to expand and form a large fluffy foam. Give it a try. Using the Saxe Shake, I have turned out Ramos Gin Fizzes as fast and efficiently as any other shaken cocktail with excellent results.

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