Stone Fence Cocktail

Stone Fence
1 Lump of Ice.
2 Dashes Angostura Bitters.
1 Glass Scotch Whisky. (2 oz Suntory Hibiki 12)
Use long tumbler and fill with soda water (Oliver’s Herefordshire Dry Perry).

Soda? Who makes a Stone Fence with Soda? Well, I’ll be damned if I am going to make a Stone Fence with Soda! Unfortunately, I had no traditional Cider in the house, either, so texted Daniel at Alembic to see if he had any. Turned out he only had this rather fancy still Pear Cider, but why not?

The day I was making this cocktail, Alembic was hosting an event with Suntory’s Whiskies. Well, when in Rome…

Great article over at Cask Strength regarding Suntory’s Whiskies:

Japanese Odyssey-Part One

Suntory’s whiskies are made in a very similar manner to Scotch, in fact, all the malt used in the whisky is imported from Scotland!

However the different casks used, Japanese Oak, and different weather conditions for aging give Suntory’s whiskies a very different character from Scotch Whisky.

Of the several Suntory Whiskies we had available, Daniel picked the Hibiki 12 for the cocktail. It is their youngest blended Whisky.

I really enjoyed this version of the Stone Fence, a drink I could drink. Very dry, mostly flavor coming from the cider, but with the Japanese Whisky poking through. Some who tried it thought it could use a little sweetener, but I’ve never seen a Stone Fence recipe call for sweetener, just Cider and Booze. I did miss the bubbles a tad.

I will have to re-try it with some of my favorite French Ciders, like those from Eric Bordelet or Etienne Dupont. Or for an extra funky beverage, Basque or Asturian Sidra…

And yes, this is a very old recipe. It was probably already a very old recipe when Jerry Thomas included it in his “Bartender’s Guide”.

Though the Thomas recipe is as follows:

Stone Fence.
(Use large bar-glass.)
Take 1 wine-glass of Bourbon or rye whiskey.
2 or 3 small lumps of ice.
Fill up the glass with sweet cider.

Grumble, I suppose “sweet cider” really means apple juice. But what fun is that?

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.

7 thoughts on “Stone Fence Cocktail

  1. Pingback: Stone Fence Cocktail | 12 Bottle Bar

    • In the midwest, sweet cider is definitely distinct from apple juice and is NOT interchangeable. It is brown, cloudy almost to opaque, more tart, more aromatic & altogether less bland than apple juice. It can throw lots of sediment, if you let it sit in the fridge a few days. Until recently it was only available seasonally. (Of late years, they’ve been pressing it & freezing it, or storing the apples & pressing as needed.) I’m afraid my reaction to ordering a “hot apple cider” at a newly built Starbucks in my area & being handed a heated glass of bottled Mott’s clear apple juice was both incredulous and profane. Topped with whipped cream, no less. “Are you out of your minds?!!”, was only the beginning of my response. This was my first & my last ever patronage of Starbucks. I think a good sweet true cider might work better in a Stone Fence than you expect, if apple juice is what passes for cider in California.

      • I suppose if you want to call filtered apple juice reconstituted from concentrate “apple juice” and unfiltered actual juice from Apples “Sweet Apple Cider” that is fine. Though it seems sort of backward to me.


        Though, I suspect, when this drink was originally created, pre-1700, filtered “apple juice” from concentrate didn’t exist.

        To me, it’s kind of nice with a good hard apple cider, an altogether drier drink.

        Though I’m sure the Stone Fence is also perfectly fine with “Sweet Apple Cider”, warm or cold.

        Starbucks is a sugar laden plague upon the world. I avoid them unless I am having major caffeine withdrawal and they are the only choice. And then I insist on a small coffee or iced tea, no sweetener.

        • As a confirmed coffee hater, I had never darkened their doors, and the only reason for that particular excursion was that a friend thought it would be a convenient place to meet & plan a hike she and my husband were about to go on. Whipped cream on hot apple juice. I still shudder.

          I think I’d like a Stone Fence in either cider incarnation, depending on whether I’m in the mood for fruity or not.

        • Erik, you’ve the right of it.

          The misuse of “cider” to mean proper apple juice, and “apple juice” to mean a ghastly off-yellow fluid is a tragedy almost as great as the misuse of “beer” to refer to something that might as well have passed through a horse’s bladder. Both, of course, are the result of that damnable Prohibition.

          I’m drinking a Stone Fence right now, although nothing so interesting–it’s only Magner’s and blended Scotch. Not bad at all.

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