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Outdoor Gear Reviews, Tips & Adventure Stories to Inspire an Outdoor Life
September 15, 2023

The Cocktail Box Co.’s Old Fashioned Cocktail Kit Review

Written by Zack Newsome
Updated on September 15, 2023
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Cocktail Box Co. Old Fashioned cocktail kit with camping cocktails and a bottle of Maker's Mark at a campsite.

We’ve said it before, but everything seems to taste better in the outdoors. A mediocre meal at home turns into a gourmet masterpiece when cooked over a fire and eaten in the shadows of snowy mountain peaks. A dehydrated meal earns Michelin stars after knocking out 15 miles on the trail. And this truth seems to multiply when it comes to camping cocktails – they taste better than at home.

A cold beer hits harder in the great outdoors.  A glass of wine (even if from a box and served in an enamel mug) exudes a feeling of luxury at the campsite. And if you’re willing to put in the extra work, a cocktail, prepared deep in wild spaces, can be otherworldly.

The problem with camping cocktails is both the amount of items you need to bring along to craft a good cocktail and the effort it takes to make them.  This extra work leads most outdoor enthusiasts to leave the fancy cocktails at home and drink something simpler while at the campsite.  Fortunately, The Cocktail Box Co’s Cocktail Kits make it effortless to craft camping cocktails in the outdoors.  These kits provide everything you need (minus the booze) to make the perfect camping cocktail in minutes.

The Background

We first discovered The Cocktail Box Co Cocktail Kits on a stroll through our local REI last year. The eye-catching design and handy tin packaging of these cocktail kits caught our eye.  We’re always on the hunt for outdoor gear and products that make time spent outdoors more enjoyable and these kits fit the bill.  We knew we had to pick one up to try for our upcoming 5-day camping trip in the mountains of southwestern Colorado.

Available in 10 different cocktails (see the list below), these kits provide everything you need – as well as some awesome extras – to allow you to make craft cocktails anywhere.  You just bring the alcohol and the cocktail kit does the rest.  Well actually, YOU do the rest, but the cocktail provides everything you need.

Available Cocktail Box Co Kits:

  • Manhattan
  • Mojito
  • Gin & Tonic
  • Mai Tai
  • Moscow Mule
  • Margarita
  • Champagne Cocktail
  • Old Fashioned
  • Sazerac
  • Daiquiri

I love whiskey cocktails and chose the Old Fashioned Cocktail Kit to try.  With the convenient tin in hand, I could already imagine the taste of a craft cocktail hitting my tastebuds out in the middle of nowhere – and I was all for it.

The Cocktail Box Co’s Old Fashioned Cocktail Kit Specs

  • Includes everything but the Whiskey
  • Makes 6 cocktails
  • Developed & tested by skilled mixologists
  • Kit includes
    • aromatic bitters
    • orange-flavored bitters
    • grapefruit flavored bitters
    • sugar cubes
    • 3 cocktail picks
    • muddler spoon
    • linen coaster
  • Cost: $22.99 USD

Crafting Camping Cocktails in the Wild

Having been the one from our group to discover The Cocktail Box Co’s cocktail kits, I was on mixology duties during our trip.  I was a bit anxious when the time arrived to break open the cocktail kit and start making drinks.  I have tried all-in-one kits before and they always seem to compromise quality for convenience.  I had brought along a bottle of Maker’s Mark to use for my Old Fashioned so if the kit was underwhelming, at least we would be drinking a decent whiskey.

The Cocktail Box Co's Old Fashioned cocktail kit opened showing all of the included ingredients to make camping cocktails.
Each item of the kit feels more luxurious than they need to be which adds to the overall experience of using the kit.

Opening The Tin

When I first opened the cocktail kit, I was encouraged by what I saw.  A small tin contained 6 sugar cubes – one for each drink the kit is rated to make. A mini bottle of aromatic bitters sat next to it with two even smaller bottles beside.  A tiny bottle of grapefruit bitters and a tiny bottle of orange bitters – both invoking confidence in me that this kit didn’t leave out the details.  Also inside the tin were 3 stainless steel cocktail picks, a muddler spoon, and a cocktail napkin.  Each of these items felt more luxurious than they needed to be which added to the overall experience of using the kit. Finally, an instruction booklet detailed how to make the drinks.

Making Camping Cocktails

The included elements of The Cocktail Box Co's Old Fashioned cocktail kit .
Each item of the kit is easy to use – making it simple to make delicious craft cocktails anywhere.

With the included instructions, making the cocktails was easy.  The steps are clear and well-written leaving little room for error.  The cocktail picks, muddler spoon, and linen napkin/coaster made me look better at mixing cocktails than I am.

Camping has a tendency to make otherwise mundane things fun.  Cooking is typically a chore when at home, but becomes an adventure in a makeshift camp kitchen. Making and tending a fire is something I look forward to each time I stay under the stars.  I’d include making craft cocktails in this list.  The kit made it super fun to spend a few moments crafting something extraordinary and luxurious.  Our group felt lucky to be receiving such fancy drinks as they were “roughing it”. I felt lucky to have the chance to make something special for everyone.

Each item of the kit is easy to use – making it simple to follow the instructions. The only issue we had was getting the 3-4 dashes out of the grapefruit and orange bitter bottles.  These tiny bottles with a small amount of flavored bitters inside are difficult to get anything to come out of the cap.  The restrictive top doesn’t cause the liquid inside to drip as the larger bottle does – making it impossible to add dashes to our drinks as required.  To solve this dilemma – I ended up inserting one of the cocktail picks into the top of the cap to release a few drops in each drink.  While not a deal-breaker and easily solvable, this was the only imperfection of an otherwise perfect kit.

The value of The Cocktail Box Co’s Cocktail kits isn’t just in the end product they create, but also in the experience of making the end product. The kit made it fun to make cocktails – especially in remote wilderness – and the high-end ingredients and utensils bring a surprising amount of confidence to whoever is fortunate enough to make the cocktails.

The Verdict

Once our Old Fashioned cocktails were made and had rested for the requisite 2 minutes (for the flavors to be released), we took our first sips.  Perhaps we were under the influence of nature, but everyone in our group loved them.  The end result of this kit is an Old Fashioned cocktail that is properly balanced, perfectly sweetened, and complex.  They are the perfect drink to end a long day outdoors as you sit by the fire.  These camping cocktails are as good as an Old Fashioned you’d make at home and could compete with the offering from your local bar.  Astonishingly……they were that good.

Over the duration of our trip, The Cocktail Box Co’s cocktail kit produced 6 Old Fashioned cocktails for our group.  After 6 cocktails, we ran out of sugar cubes but had plenty of bitters still available in each of the mini bottles.  In fact, although we had followed the instructions perfectly, we still had half of our bottles of bitters left.  You could probably pick up some additional sugar cubes and make even more cocktails with this kit – and we will.

What We Loved:

  • Makes a really good Old Fashioned cocktail
  • Real Ingredients
  • Awesome experience
  • Makes you feel like a mixologist
  • Carrying tin and linen coaster are smart additions

What We Didn’t Love:

  • Pricey when you consider the need to also buy alcohol
  • Flavored bitter bottles are difficult to pour/drop
  • Only makes 6 drinks (though adding sugar cubes may provide more)

The Cocktail Box Co's Old Fashioned cocktail kit positioned in front of a mountain background.

The Bottom Line

We loved The Cocktail Box Co’s Old Fashioned Cocktail Kit. I really enjoyed using the kit to make the cocktails.  The process was fun and made me feel like I was a proper mixologist.  The cocktails this kit produces are top-notch and as good as any Old Fashioned you’ll find in most bars.  Overall, the cocktail kit is high-quality with detailed touches that make it special.  While we can’t speak to the company’s other cocktail kits, add this “Old Fashioned” kit to your next trip and you’ll have 6 of the best camping cocktails you’ve ever had.

At $22, these cocktail kits will add an extra expense to your trip budget.  But we think picking up one of these kits for a trip can level up your drink game in a big way. The cocktails these kits create are a luxury – a special privilege reserved for a special meal or after a long day of outdoor fun.  You should still bring along your everyday drinks – the cold beer and boxed wine – but also add a Cocktail Kit to treat yourself to some amazing camping cocktails when the time is right.

Happy Camping

About the Author

Zack Newsome

Zack is a lifelong adventurer passionate about sharing the joy of the outdoors with others. He loves camping, fly-fishing, sailing, and exploring wild spaces. He launched Outward in early 2022 to inspire others to spend more time outdoors – improving mental health and more deeply connecting with the environment.

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