Skip to content

Cocktail Corner: The Manhattan (Mini)

For a place they call the big city, everything here is pretty small. But that got us thinking, why not take the classic Manhattan cocktail and make it mini, just like us! So run down to the liquor store or bodega to grab your supplies and follow along as we teach you how to make your own Manhattan (Mini).  

Shut Your Ver-Mouth

This recipe requires vermouth, but what the heck is that? Vermouth is “an aromatized, fortified wine,” which is fancy speak for wine that has extra botanicals, spices, herbs, or roots for additional flavor and aroma. Vermouth can come in either sweet or dry varieties, but with this recipe, we’re making a sweet vermouth cocktail. It is most commonly seen in martinis and the classic Manhattan cocktail, so you might’ve tried it before and not even realized it. 

Variations on the Manhattan Cocktail

It’s pretty easy to adjust the ingredients of a Manhattan to fit your drink preferences. If you’re wondering what’s in a Manhattan drink, besides the usual suspects, here are some of our favorite substitutes: 

  • If you like a dryer cocktail, switch the sweet vermouth to a dry vermouth 
  • Make any Manhattan a perfect Manhattan by using a half oz. of sweet vermouth and a half oz. of dry vermouth 
  • Reverse your Manhattan by using only 1 oz. rye whiskey and 2 oz. vermouth 
  • Try a black Manhattan by adding 1 oz. Averna Amaro, a kind of aperitivo liqueur – beware of your choice of bitters. Amari (plural of Amaro) can be super bitter, so we would suggest using chocolate or sassafras bitters for the best pairing 
  • If you want your drink to be on the sweeter side with slightly less alcohol content, try using brandy instead of whiskey 
  • NON-ALCOHOLIC VERSION: This can be tricky since a Manhattan cocktail is mostly alcohol, but not impossible. There are some tasty alcohol-free rye whiskeys and sweet vermouths out there. With those substitutions, you’ll be able to enjoy a yummy non-alcoholic Manhattan (Mini)! 

How to Make a Manhattan (Mini)

This recipe makes five shots of the Manhattan (Mini) so grab some friends (or not) and let’s get started! 

drink recipe ingredients and tools set on a counter


  1. 4 oz. Rye Whiskey
  2. 2 oz. Sweet Vermouth
  3. 6 dashes Angostura Bitters 
  4. Cherries (one per shot) 
  5. Ice 


  1. 5 Shot Glasses 
  2. Medium Size Glass 
  3. Jigger 
  4. Spoon 
  5. Drink Strainer 

A person pouring the Manhattan Mini cocktail from the mixing glass into a shot glass


  1. In a regular size glass with ice, add rye whiskey, sweet vermouth, and bitters 
  2. Stir ingredients with a spoon 
  3. Over a strainer, carefully pour the drink into the shot glasses 
  4. Add a cherry for the perfect garnish and chaser 
  5. Enjoy! 

And as always, please drink (and store) responsibly. 

View our video tutorial on how to make the perfect Manhattan (Mini) here!

Take a Shot on Mini Storage

Living in a small space is stressful, but we’re here to help – and not just with our yummy twist on the famous Manhattan cocktail. With clean, well-lit storage units available in a range of sizes to fit all needs and budgets, Manhattan Mini Storage has space for all. Check out our Self Storage Calculator, then find the perfect unit near you.