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The Only Pomegranate Cocktail You’ll Ever Need

5 from 2 votes

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Easy Pomegranate Cocktail – Pomegranate Old Fashioned in a rocks glass in hard light with pomegranate pieces and arils

With the holidays around the corner I’m thinking of fast and easy cocktails I can make and batch for parties with families and friends – and this easy Old Fashioned Pomegranate Cocktail shines with festive, seasonal flavors. With just whiskey, pomegranate liqueur, a splash of grenadine and some chocolate bitters, this cocktail was fast to make and a quick evening sip. The sweet, tart flavor of pomegranate, along with the brilliant red color, makes this a perfect Old Fashioned riff for any party.

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How to Open a Pomegranate

There are many ways to open a pomegranate for cocktails, but the easiest way I’ve found is to cut off about ½ inch from the top, then score about ¼” into the pomegranate along the white partitions. Once done you can pull it apart similar to an orange. 

Watch this easy video to see how it’s done: The Best Way To Cut Open a Pomegranate

For this whiskey pomegranate cocktail, if you’d like a little extra flavor of pomegranate from it, add a few arils to the bottom of the mixing glass with the pomegranate liqueur and muddling them before adding the rest of the ingredients.

Facts about Pomegranates

Native to the Middle East, pomegranates are considered berries. Their brilliant red color inside and out attests to the high-levels of antioxidants in them, and they are considered a superfood.

While you can juice a pomegranate with an electric juicer, putting a wedge of a pomegranate in a hand citrus juice will give you a healthy splash of juice as well. 

Pomegranate seeds are called arils, and there can be between 400 to 1000 or more in one fruit. 

They will keep in the fridge for up to 2 months, although if you remove the arils (seeds) and refrigerate them, you’ll only have a few days to eat them before their flavor starts to change.

It’s said that pomegranates were the seeds Persephone ate that kept her in Hades’ underworld for 6 months of the year after she ate 6 seeds. Hades had kidnapped her away from Demeter, her mother, and her mother, the goddess of fertility and agriculture, let plants and crops die as she mourned her daughter being kept in the underworld.

Pomegranate Liqueurs

Pomegranate Old Fashioned

You should be able to find Pomegranate liqueur at any large, well-stocked liquor store. You won’t need much, so buy a 375 mL of a pomegranate liqueur to make several batches of this cocktail.

I used PAMA liqueur. It’s easy to find near me since I live in Louisville and it’s made by Brown-Forman (based in Louisville). But there are many pomegranate liqueurs available. 

Other pomegranate liqueurs to use for this whiskey cocktail include:

  • Giffard Grenade
  • La Pinta Tequila Pomegranate
  • Bols Pomegranate Liqueur

Flavors in This Pomegranate Whiskey Cocktail

While many people turn to pomegranate vodka drinks or pomegranate gin cocktails, adding whiskey and bourbon to a cocktail with the fruit is a stellar move. The flavor of pomegranate is sweet, fresh, and tart, but not as tart as lemon or lime.

In addition to the pomegranate liqueur that I use here, PAMA, I also include just a bar spoon or homemade or high-quality grenadine (also made from pomegranate juice) to add vibrance to the color and just a touch of fullness to the mouthfeel of the cocktail. 

But the star of the show and the surprise that makes this cocktail a gem is the addition of coffee bitters. Like blueberries and pineapple, pomegranate is another surprising pairing with coffee that tastes absolutely delicious.

If you don’t have coffee bitters, chocolate bitters also work, but I preferred the coffee bitters to the chocolate.

For the base spirit in this Pomegranate Old Fashioned, I chose a high rye bourbon. I’m partial to both Four Roses Small Batch bourbon and Old Forester bourbon for this whiskey pomegranate cocktail. Both are sweet enough to counteract that slight sourness from the pomegranate, but with a bit of spice and pepper to keep the drink interesting.

How to Make a Pomegranate Old Fashioned

Pomegranate Old Fashioned

Like the classic Old Fashioned cocktail, this pomegranate cocktail variation has you add the ingredients to a mixing glass, add ice and stir for 30 seconds. Strain the cocktail into a rocks glass with one large cube and garnish with a few pomegranate arils.

If you prefer a little fresh pomegranate juice in your cocktail, add a few arils to the cocktail mixing glass and muddle before adding ice to the mixing glass. Be sure to strain carefully to keep the seeds inside the arils in the mixing glass as your pour. 

How to Batch this Bourbon Pomegranate Cocktail

To batch this cocktail, I convert the measurements to cups, add about half to 75% the usual amount of bitters and a bit of water before storing it in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours to chill.

I make this as a hostess gift for holiday parties. A bottle of a bespoke craft cocktail is always a welcome drink in the house of friends and family that enjoy great food and drink.

Here’s the batch recipe for 8 cocktails. I store these in an empty 750mL bottle in the fridge.

  • 2 cups bourbon
  • ½ cup PAMA liqueur
  • 2.5 tablespoons homemade or quality grenadine (not the neon red kind)
  • 10 dashes coffee bitters
  • ⅓ cup water

Combine ingredients in an empty 750mL bottle, agitate or stir to combine and let chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours.

Other Cocktails You Might Enjoy

Pomegranate Old Fashioned

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Recommended Bar Tools

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You probably already have these, but you may need them, too:

Old Fashioned Pomegranate Cocktail (It’s All POM and Games)

Picture of Heather Wibbels, Cocktail Contessa, pouring a cocktailHeather Wibbels
Make the perfect holiday cocktail with a splash of pomegranate added to your bourbon old fashioned for a fantastic pomegranate cocktail. Adding in just a dash of coffee bitters gives the drink a vibrant taste that's unexpected. It's even an easy cocktail to batch as a gift for friends and family. Just me sure to use high quality grenadine.
5 from 2 votes
Total Time 5 mins
Course Drinks
Cuisine Bourbon Cocktail
Servings 1


  • 2 oz bourbon
  • 1/2 oz PAMA Pomegranate liqueur
  • 1 bar spoon high-quality grenadine can sub a splash of pomegranate juice
  • 2 dashes coffee bitters can sub chocolate, but it is not as good
  • Garnish: pomegranate arils


  • Add bourbon, pomegranate liqueur, grenadine and bitters to a mixing glass.
  • Add ice and stir for 20-30 seconds.
  • Strain into a rocks glass with one large cube.


To make a batch of 8 Pomegranate Old Fashioneds
  • 2 cups bourbon
  • ½ cup PAMA liqueur
  • 2.5 tablespoons homemade or quality grenadine (not the neon red kind)
  • 10 dashes coffee bitters
  • ⅓ cup water
Combine ingredients in an empty 750mL bottle, agitate or stir to combine and let chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours.
Keyword bourbon, coffee, old fashioned, pomegranate
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
By on October 22nd, 2021
Picture of Heather Wibbels, Cocktail Contessa, pouring a cocktail

About Heather Wibbels

Heather Wibbels is a whiskey enthusiast (Executive Bourbon Steward, no less) with a passion for cocktails. She loves researching and designing cocktails, drinking cocktails, and teaching cocktails. Mostly whiskey cocktails, given her Kentucky location

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