Cozy Drinks and Cocktails / Recipes

Detroit Manhattan: A Faygo Cocktail for 313 Day

This month, we’re celebrating 313 Day with cocktails made using Detroit’s favorite pop (never soda; always pop): Faygo. And I’m celebrating very hard with a classic cocktail that has a Michigan twist: the Detroit Manhattan – a Faygo cocktail that puts a spin on the traditional Manhattan by using Rock & Rye syrup. 

Detroit’s Favorite Pop

Faygo was founded in Detroit in the early 1900s. There are now over 50 Faygo flavors. You’d recognize some, like a traditional Cola, and Twist!, their version of lemon-lime. But some are a bit more… out there, like Candy Apple and Cotton Candy. Strawberry-flavored Red Pop is their most popular. I, however, am partial to Rock & Rye, which is like cream soda with a bit of cherry mixed in.

A Faygo Cocktail From a Classic

I wanted to make a Faygo cocktail to celebrate my favorite flavor. Like I said, I love rock & Rye, but I’m not big on cocktails with pop as the main ingredient. Instead, I like my drinks more liquor-forward and less sweet. And I love classic cocktails with a few simple ingredients that really pop (no pun intended). So for my Faygo cocktail, I did something a bit different. I wanted to keep the booze front and center, so I picked one of my favorite cocktails – the Manhattan – and added a little Detroit twist. I cooked down a cup of Rock & Rye into a syrup and used that in my Manhattan in place of sweet vermouth. My thoughts were that the cherry notes in the Rock & Rye would make it a good substitute.

The Rock & Rye syrup is SWEET. It’s super concentrated so all of the sweetness is amplified and you can really taste the vanilla and sugar in the drink. To balance that out, I used more bitters than I typically would in a Manhattan. 

I had lots of fun making this and I hope you enjoy it!

Rock & Rye Manhattan

Rock & Rye Manhattan

Yield: 3
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

A Detroit-style take on the classic Manhattan cocktail.


  • 4 ounces Rock & Rye syrup (see recipe below)
  • 6 ounces rye bourbon
  • 9 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 3 dashes orange bitters
  • Ice
  • 3 cherries for garnish (I'd recommend Traverse City Whiskey Co. Premium Cocktail Cherries)


Rock & Rye Manhattan

Combine Rock & Rye syrup, rye, and bitters into a mixing glass with several ice cubes. Stir until chilled and well-combined. Strain into three chilled cocktail glasses and garnish with cherries.

Rock & Rye Syrup

Pour 1 cup Rock & Rye into a small saucepan and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook until reduced to about ½ cup. This should take 30 to 35 minutes. Cool and use in cocktails. 


The syrup recipe makes just enough for three cocktails. If you want some to store (it should last awhile in the fridge), double or triple your batch but allow more time for reducing.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 3 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 387Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 587mgCarbohydrates: 67gFiber: 6gSugar: 17gProtein: 8g

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