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The Godfather cocktail is a simple Scotch and amaretto drink that’s full of flavor! It pairs nutty sweetness with a spicy whiskey finish.

Godfather cocktail
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Here’s a drink for Scotch lovers and drinkers who need a little extra convincing. Try the Godfather cocktail! This Scotch and amaretto cocktail is deliciously simple. With just two ingredients, it balances the nutty sweetness of amaretto with the spicy finish of whiskey. The hint of amaretto gives the Scotch a unique intrigue that makes it more palatable than drinking straight up. For a non-Scotch lover like me, it’s the perfect intro-to-Scotch cocktail.

What’s a Godfather cocktail?

The Godfather is a two-ingredient cocktail made with Scotch whiskey and amaretto. The history around the drink is a little mysterious: no one knows who invented it. But it became popular in the 1970’s when cocktails were strong and sweet (and often included amaretto). It’s believed to be named after the Godfather movie with Marlon Brando, which came out in 1972. Marlon Brando’s character often drank Scotch in the movie, the Godfather name could be referencing the addition of the Italian liqueur.

Whatever the case, here are the ingredients you’ll need to make a Godfather cocktail:

  • Scotch whiskey
  • Amaretto
Godfather cocktail

How to make a Godfather

Like most two ingredient cocktails, the Godfather is ultra simple to make. You don’t even need to dirty a cocktail shaker or citrus juicer. Just stir and go! Here’s all you need to do:

  • Mix: Mix the Scotch and amaretto in a mixing glass.
  • Optional splash: Make it fancy and add a small splash of single malt Scotch on top (see below).
  • Garnish: Add ice. Garnish with a lemon peel if you’d like.

Types of Scotch (& a finishing touch!)

Are you a Scotch fan? Chances are, you’ll know the Scotch you love: use whatever you have on hand! To take the Godfather cocktail over the top, we put our own special spin on it by using two types of Scotch. This is absolutely optional, but we happened to have two types of Scotch on hand after making the Penicillin cocktail. Here’s a little more about Scotch types:

  • Blended Scotch: Blended Scotch has a smooth flavor: almost like bourbon, but with more of a spicy finish. As its name suggests, it’s made by blending two types of whisky: barrel-aged malt whisky and grain whisky.
  • Single Malt Scotch: Single malt Scotch is a malt whisky that’s from one distillery, and it’s usually a little more expensive. If you have a single malt scotch, you can pour on a little on the top of the Godfather cocktail to step it up a notch.
Godfather cocktail

What is amaretto?

The other main ingredient in the Godfather: amaretto! Amaretto is an almond liqueur that originates from Italy. It has a distinctive almond flavor, and tastes both sweet and bitter at once (amaretto means in Italian “little bitter”). It’s worth getting a bottle for your shelf: you can use it in cocktails and in cooking, especially desserts! 

Other drinks that use amaretto? Try more amaretto cocktails like the Amaretto Sour, French Connection, Amaretto Stone Sour, Toasted Almond, Amaretto Coffee, or Italian Margarita.

More two ingredient cocktails

The Godfather is a two ingredient cocktail that’s quick and easy to mix up! With most of these, you don’t even need to shake them: just stir together in a glass. Here are some more famous two ingredient cocktails:

How to make a Godfather cocktail

When to serve the Godfather cocktail

The Godfather is so easy, and it’s perfect for Scotch lovers and non-fans alike! Try it as a:

  • Happy hour drink
  • Before dinner drink
  • Late night drinks drink
  • Cocktail hour drink
  • Guys or girls night drink
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Godfather cocktail

Godfather Cocktail

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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 2 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x


The Godfather cocktail is a simple Scotch and amaretto drink that’s full of flavor! It pairs nutty sweetness with a spicy whiskey finish.


  • 1 ½ ounces (3 tablespoons) blended scotch
  • ½ ounce (1 tablespoon) amaretto
  • For the garnish: Lemon peel


  1. Add the blended scotch and amaretto to a mixing glass and stir with ice.
  2. Strain the drink into a lowball glass and fill it with ice. (To take it over the top, add a splash of single malt scotch on top). Garnish with a lemon peel and serve.
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Stirred
  • Cuisine: Cocktails
  • Diet: Vegan

More Scotch cocktails

Love your Scotch? Here are a few of the best Scotch cocktails to try:

  • Penicillin A modern classic! Featuring Scotch with the flavors of honey, lemon and ginger, it’s got a unique, high-end vibe.
  • Rob Roy A Manhattan made with Scotch! This booze-forward cocktail is a sophisticated way to enjoy a good Scotch.
  • Scotch Sour A whiskey sour with blended Scotch, it tastes sweet tart and peaty on the finish.
  • Blood and Sand A unique classic cocktail made with Scotch! Full of complex flavor, it features blood orange juice and cherry liqueur.
  • Rusty Nail A Scotch and Drambuie cocktail that’s got the 1960’s written all over it! We put a little shine on this classic slow sipper.

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

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