The Massey Cocktail

Massey Cocktail
The Spruce / S&C Design Studios
Prep: 3 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Total: 3 mins
Serving: 1 serving
Yield: 1 cocktail
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
200 Calories
0g Fat
6g Carbs
0g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1
Amount per serving
Calories 200
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 3mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 6g 2%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Total Sugars 3g
Protein 0g
Vitamin C 8mg 41%
Calcium 11mg 1%
Iron 0mg 1%
Potassium 34mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

The Massey cocktail is the creation of Portland bartender Jacob Grier and inspired by his Irish grandmother. It is an impressive cocktail that stretches the boundaries of what you might think mixes well with Irish whiskey. Rather unique and a nice example of modern mixology at its finest, it's one that every connoisseur of fine drinks is sure to appreciate.

This drink is a sort of enhanced Manhattan that features Irish whiskey. The recipe brings gin into the whiskey-sweet vermouth combo, so it starts off as a hybrid between the Manhattan and martini. Adding Green Chartreuse and Campari gives the Massey cocktail a sweetened herbal bitterness that only adds to its intrigue.

While this seems like an unusual mixture of rather bold ingredients, it works surprisingly well. When it all comes together, the harmony of flavors becomes an elegant taste sensation unlike anything else. Mix one up and taste it for yourself, and be sure to share it at your next dinner party.


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for a Massey Cocktail
    The Spruce / S&C Design Studios
  2. In a mixing glass, pour the Irish whiskey, gin, sweet vermouth, Green Chartreuse, and Campari.

    Mixing a Massey Cocktail
    The Spruce / S&C Design Studios
  3. Add ice and stir vigorously for 30 seconds.

    Stirring a Massey Cocktail
    The Spruce / S&C Design Studios
  4. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

    Straining a Massey Cocktail
    The Spruce / S&C Design Studios
  5. Garnish with an orange twist. Serve and enjoy.

    Massey Cocktail
    The Spruce / S&C Design Studios

Recipe Variations

  • To get a real taste of the Massey cocktail, follow Grier's original spirits of choice: Tullamore Dew Irish Whiskey, Bombay Sapphire Gin, and Carpano Antica Formula for the sweet vermouth. Other brands can be substituted for these, though not every combination is going to be ideal.
  • Switching out the Green Chartreuse is more difficult because the liqueur uses a specific (and secret) blend of herbs and botanicals. The next best option is Dolin Génépy from Haus Alpenz.

How Strong Is the Massey Cocktail?

Since it is made up of five distilled spirits and no nonalcoholic mixers, it is reasonable to assume that the Massey is not a weak drink. When following Grier's brand suggestions, this cocktail is a heavyweight at 32 percent ABV (64 proof). This is not unusual for martini-style drinks, though its impact should not be underestimated.

What's a Good Substitute for Campari?

Campari is a proprietary apéritif. While there is no exact match for its bittersweet, herbal-citrus taste, there are two excellent options:

  • Tempus Fugit Gran Classico is a Swiss-made bitter based on a 19th-century Italian recipe called "Bitter of Turin." It's made with natural ingredients and has a very similar taste.
  • Leopold Bros. Aperitivo was developed as a Campari substitute. It uses natural ingredients, including cochineal, to achieve the red color. Originally, this insect-derived dye was in Campari, but it was substituted with artificial colorings in 2006 to make the apéritif vegan.