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Ryan Chetiyawardana’s Beeswax Old Fashioned Recipe

Written by MasterClass

Last updated: Nov 8, 2020 • 2 min read

World-class mixologist Ryan Chetiyawardana’s take on the Old Fashioned cocktail uses a bit of beeswax to make a smooth-drinking cocktail.



What Is a Beeswax Old Fashioned?

The Beeswax Old Fashioned is a spin on the traditional Old Fashioned invented by mixologist Ryan Chetiyawardana. To make a classic Old Fashioned cocktail, you simply muddle bourbon or rye whiskey, a sugar cube, and a few dashes Angostura bitters in an Old Fashioned glass, then serve it over ice cubes and garnish with a maraschino cherry.

For the Beeswax Old Fashioned, mixologist Ryan Chetiyawardana infuses the bourbon with beeswax for a smoother, richer mouthfeel. Melting down the beeswax and letting the fat molecules mingle with the bourbon allows some of the aromatics of the beeswax to bond with the whiskey, but it also fundamentally alters the body of the spirit into something that has a distinct weight without adding extra sugar.

How to Make a Beeswax-Lined Bottle

Ryan’s Beeswax Old Fashioned recipe can be stored in any resealable container, but for something a little special, try storing it in glass bottles coated in beeswax. It’s elegant, surprising, and great for giving as a gift. To make a beeswax-lined bottle, you will need a sous vide machine.

  1. Fill a large container or pot with water and set your water circulator to 73°C (163°F). Allow the water to come to temperature.
  2. Fill a second, smaller container (select one that you don’t mind being permanently coated with wax) with about 50g (about 2 oz.) of beeswax, and carefully float it on top of the water until the beeswax turns to liquid.
  3. Take the container off of the water bath and set it on your workstation.
  4. Gently pour the wax into your glass bottle and rotate the bottle until the inside is coated with wax.
  5. Turn the bottle upside down so that any excess wax drips back into the container. Repeat this step until the entire bottle is coated.
  6. Allow to dry before filling with any liquid.
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Beeswax Old Fashioned Cocktail Recipe

6 cocktails
Prep Time
3 min
Total Time
3 hr 3 min
Cook Time
3 hr


The Beeswax Old Fashioned uses techniques that are mostly reserved for cooking—i.e., sous vide, or sealing liquid in a bag and heating it in a water bath—so be sure you have a water circulator and a vacuum sealer before you get started. Learn more about sous vide in our guide here.

For the beeswax bourbon:

  • 350 grams bourbon
  • 50 grams beeswax pellets

For the cocktail:

  • 350 grams beeswax bourbon
  • 350 grams Cognac
  • 150 grams simple syrup
  • 115 grams filtered water
  • 4 grams Angostura bitters
  • 2 grams Peychaud’s bitters
  • Optional: Lemon, grapefruit, or orange peel, for garnish
  • Optional: Dash of absinthe
  1. Make the beeswax bourbon: Protecting your work surface with a heat-proof base, fill a large pot with water. Place a water circulator in the pot and set it to 73°C (163°F). Fill a food-safe sous vide bag with the bourbon and beeswax pellets. Seal the bag with a vacuum sealer. (Do not use the vacuum function.) Place the bag in the water bath and make sure it’s completely submerged. Agitate to mix the wax and bourbon. After 2 hours, remove the bag from the water bath and place it in the freezer for an hour to set. Remove the bag from the freezer. You should see that the beeswax has solidified into hard chunks. Using kitchen scissors, cut a small corner off of the bag. Strain the contents through a fine-mesh strainer into a resealable container. They will keep indefinitely.
  2. Combine beeswax bourbon, Cognac, simple syrup, filtered water, Angostura bitters, and Peychaud’s bitters in a resealable container, like a beeswax-lined glass bottle.
  3. When ready to serve, pour about 60ml (2.4 oz.) of the concoction into a chilled rocks glass. Garnish by expressing your choice of citrus peel, and add a dash of absinthe if you prefer.
  4. Store whatever is left in the refrigerator; this drink keeps indefinitely.

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