how to make a rob roy cocktail…also known as the scotch manhattan

Rob Roy drink is a cocktail that is very similar to a traditional or classic Manhattan. The Rob Roy is made with Scotch Whisky instead of the Rye Whiskey. For this reason the drink is sometimes also referred to as the Scotch Manhattan.

The traditional version of this drink is usually sweet as it is made with the sweet vermouth. A dry version of this drink, which is called a Dry Rob Roy uses dry vermouth instead of the sweet vermouth. You can also use both the dry and sweet vermouth in equal proportions to make a Perfect Rob Roy.

This version of the Rob Roy drink is believed to have been created at the Waldorf Hotel bar in New York, in honor of the opera Rob Roy based on the Scottish folk hero Robert Roy MacGregor. The drink is shaken and usually served up in a martini glass.


  • 3 shots of Scotch Whisky
  • 1 shot of Italian Sweet Vermouth
  • Three of dashes of bitters
  • Lemon Peel for garnish


  1. Add crushed ice into a cocktail shaker or mixing glass
  2. Add 3 shots of Scotch Whisky into the shaker
  3. Add 1 shot of the Sweet Vermouth into the shaker
  4. Add two or three of dashes of the bitters
  5. Shake well to mix the ingredients
  6. Strain the contents of the shaker into a chilled cocktail or martini glass
  7. Garnish with a lemon peel or maraschino cherry
Rob Roy with Scotch Whiskey

Variations and Similar Drinks

Perfect Rob Roy: Equal parts of sweet and dry vermouth is used in this variation along with the scotch whisky.
Dry Rob Roy: Substitute sweet vermouth in this recipe with dry vermouth.
Manhattan: A similar drink made with Rye Whiskey instead of the Scotch whisky.


  • Blended Scotch Whisky is most commonly used for this recipe, and the taste of the drink is influenced by the type of the whisky used.
  • A maraschino cherry can also be used as the garnish instead of the lemon peel, especially for sweet and perfect versions of the drink.
  • Most recipes call for the Rob Roy drink to be stirred rather than shaken. I prefer it to be shaken as it contain a sweet liqueur and served up in a martini glass.