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The Godfather Cocktail – Classic & Alternative Recipes

Updated: Jul 14, 2023

Check out our classic and alternative Godfather Cocktail recipes for one of the easiest cocktails to make at home. If you have amaretto and some whisky in the cupboard you're in luck.


In episode 17 of our podcast Honest to a Malt – The Godfather Quattro, Mike & Duncan experiment using different recipes to try and make the best Godfather Cocktail they can. Have a listen to see what we really thought of each one, or try making one of the recipes below and see for yourself!


Most folks are familiar with whisky cocktails like the Old Fashioned and Manhattan, or a whiskey sour. These are some of the most well known and consumed whisky cocktails. Less people are aware of, or indeed, have tried one of the simplest cocktails there is – The Godfather!


First off let’s look at how you make a classic Godfather Cocktail, which is a great excuse to get involved in #TumblerClub.


How to Make The Godfather Cocktail

  • Take a large tumbler

  • Add large ice cubes

  • Pour in 30ml (1 ounce) whisky

  • Pour in 30ml (1 ounce) amaretto

  • Mix gently with a spoon.

Some recipes recommend, using twice as much whisky as amaretto. Try both and see what you prefer. Amaretto is sweet, so it’s best not to use a whisky that is too sweet. Often a good blend, such as Monkey Shoulder, or a Speyside Single Malt - for example, Aberlour, would work well.


The Godfather Cocktail - serviced in tumblers
The Godfather Cocktail - serviced in tumblers


The Honest to a Malt Presents 'Alternative' Godfather Cocktail Recipes


The Negfather


Inspired by one of the most famous cocktails on the planet, a Classic Negroni, and for this example using the World's Best Single Malt Whisky 2023, this is The Negfather, a cross between a Godfather and a Negroni.

  • Take a large tumbler

  • Add large ice cubes

  • Whisky 45ml (1.5 ounces)

  • Amaretto 1 part

  • Campari 1 part

  • Red vermouth 1 part

  • Mix gently with a spoon.


Godfather meets a Negroni! The Negfather
Godfather meets a Negroni! The Negfather

Lagfather Sour


It's always good to consider the base flavours, and whether you want your drink to be sweet, sour, bitter, salty, and umami or savory. Here we combine a Godfather, with a sour. We use Lagavulin 16, where the phenolic peat, and gives that medicinal taste, but you could use any peated whisky, whether from Islay or not. Chucking that in with the fresh lemon juice and amaretto.

  • Take a large tumbler

  • Add large ice cubes

  • Peated whisky 30ml (1 ounce)

  • Amaretto 30ml (1 ounce)

  • Freshly squeezed lemon juice 15ml (half an ounce)

  • Mix gently with a spoon.


Peated Godfather - The Lagfather Sour
Peated Godfather - The Lagfather Sour

C-Town Godfather


We wanted to get some of that coastal sea saltiness into our Godfather. A really simple way to do this is to use whisky which has that coastal character. Glen Scotia, Springbank, Bunnahabhain would all be fabulous. We have chosen Springbank as it is lightly peated and so that gives the cocktail a bit more oopmh!

  • Take a large tumbler

  • Add large ice cubes

  • Campbeltown or Coastal whisky 45ml (1.5 ounces)

  • Amaretto 30ml (1 ounce)

  • A few drops of bitters (we used celery bitters)

  • Mix gently with a spoon.


C-Town Godfather Cocktail
C-Town Godfather Cocktail

About the Godfather Cocktail: A Timeless Blend of Power and Sophistication

In the ever-evolving landscape of mixology, some cocktails transcend time and trends, solidifying their place in the pantheon of classic libations. The Godfather cocktail, an enchanting blend of whisky and amaretto, stands as a testament to timeless elegance and the allure of the silver screen.

Legend has it that this iconic drink was inspired by the legendary 1972 film "The Godfather," starring Marlon Brando and Al Pacino. The movie's compelling characters and gripping narrative captured the hearts of audiences around the world, and its influence reached far beyond the silver screen. Just as the characters themselves were known for their power and sophistication, the Godfather cocktail exudes an air of suave refinement.

The Godfather cocktail's origins can be traced back to the bustling bars of the 1970s, where skilled bartenders sought to create a drink that embodied the essence of the film. By combining equal parts of Scotch whisky and amaretto liqueur over ice, they succeeded in crafting a beverage that mirrored the duality of its namesake—bold yet smooth, commanding yet approachable.

The choice of whisky is crucial in achieving the perfect Godfather. A robust Scotch whisky with its complex flavours and smoky undertones provides a solid foundation for the drink, while amaretto—a sweet Italian liqueur crafted from almonds—lends a touch of luxurious sweetness and a hint of nuttiness.

Over the years, the Godfather cocktail has become a favorite among whisky enthusiasts and cocktail aficionados alike. Its versatility allows for variations and adaptations, with some opting for bourbon instead of Scotch or adding a dash of bitters for a more intricate flavour profile.

Today, the Godfather cocktail remains a symbol of timeless sophistication, evoking memories of an era when charm and power walked hand in hand. Whether sipped at a glamorous cocktail party or enjoyed in the quiet solitude of a dimly lit bar, this legendary libation continues to captivate and enthrall, just as its namesake did on the silver screen. Raise a glass to the Godfather, and let its smooth allure transport you to a bygone era of elegance and intrigue.

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2 Comments


blakeveitch89
Dec 01, 2023

✨ I appreciate the comprehensive guide to the Godfather Cocktail, exploring both classic and innovative recipes. But have you tried it with Japanese Whisky? I've found these different types of amazing Japanese Nikka whisky I think it would enhance the overall richness of the content. Cheers to timeless sophistication and versatile libations! 🥃

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@whiskytip - Duncan
@whiskytip - Duncan
Jan 24
Replying to

We will do a version with nikka in the barrel. Thank you

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