Guava old fashioned is one of the best cocktails I have come up with, if not THE best. As you might have caught on by now I have a love affair with guava and it is no secret. The muddled guava shells wonderfully complement bourbon and are further enhanced by the addition of angostura bitters and an aromatic orange twist.
I prefer slightly sweeter bourbon like Bulleit or Blantons for the guava old fashioned, but nothing quite as sweet as Jack Daniels, though I am sure that would work just fine. Maker’s Mark, Knob Creek, or Buffalo Trace would be good substitutions too, but Bulleit Bourbon with its maple flavor and nutmeg spice is my personal favorite.
Muddled guava shells are great to use because they already come in heavy syrup which can be used to further sweeten the cocktail. I experimented making the guava old fashioned with guava marmalade in place of the shells, and this tasted equally delicious. Although the guava is strained out the grainy fruit pulp can settle to the bottom of the glass so I recommend serving with a cocktail straw to continually stir up the guava goodness. Old fashioned cocktails are my go-to drink nowadays, and the guava old fashioned is a new Cuban twist on an old classic.
Guava Old Fashioned Cocktail
1 guava shell in heavy syrup
1 tablespoon heavy syrup from the can
2 ounces Bulleit Bourbon (or your favorite)
4 dashes Angostura bitters
Splash club soda
Orange twist for garnish
Sugared guava cube for garnish
Muddle one guava shell with a tablespoon of the heavy syrup. Add four dashes of Angostura bitters, pour in 2 ounces of Bulleit or your favorite bourbon, top with ice and shake well. The guava old fashioned can also be stirred with a bar spoon but vigorously shaking the cocktail breaks up the muddled guava further.
Strain the guava old fashioned over fresh ice. I like to use the giant ice cubes or ice sphere, they look elegant and take longer to melt. Add a splash of club soda, garnish with an orange twist and a sugared guava cube (you can buy sugared guava cubes or roll a cube of guava paste in fine granulated sugar). Cheers and enjoy!
Note: Conchita brand of both the guava shells and guava marmalade are my favorite. Luckily in Miami guava everything is readily available, but you can order the guava shells or guava marmalade online or likely find these products in local Hispanic markets.