Dying Bastard cocktail garnished with lime peel

Dying Bastard Cocktail

By Timo Torner / Last updated on January 15, 2023

First published on January 3, 2023 

The Dying Bastard is a variation of the Suffering Bastard. Both recipes are a creation of famed bartender Joe Scialom.

Just by reading the name, you might already suspect that the Dying Bastard is a riff off the famed Suffering Bastard. Also, both were created by the same mixologist, and there is a third member of the group: the Dead Bastard.

All recipes were developed by Joe Scialom while working at the Shepheards Hotel in Cairo. The history of these recipes was long unclear until Jeff Beachbum Berry, a Tiki cocktail legend set out to find the inventor and met Scialom's daughter Colette and learned more about the history of these drinks. [1]


The recipe for making a Dying Bastard cocktail is quite similar to the Suffering Bastard. Here's what you'll need:

  • Gin - Just like the Suffering Bastard, the base is Gin. As it's known that Scialom used Gin from British soldiers in the 1940s, chances are that London Dry or Dry Gin has been used.
  • Brandy - Another spirit that's also part of the main cocktail's recipe. Primarily Cognac is used to make the drink.
  • Bourbon - There's an ongoing discussion if Bourbon or Brandy is part of the Suffering Bastard recipe. Conveniently, the Dying Bastard uses both.
  • Lime Juice - Fresh lime juice brings much-needed acidity and balance.
  • Ginger beer - Ginger beer not only brings a kick of spice to the cocktail but also adds carbonation and makes the drink more palatable. Make sure to actually use ginger beer and not ginger ale since the latter will make the drink too sweet.
  • Aromatic bitters - We recommend using Angostura bitters, although Scialom used something else. According to his daughter, Joe Scialom used homemade bitters from an apothecary across the street from Shepheard's hotel.

How to make it

The cocktail should be served in a tall glass. A Collins or Highball glass are great choices. Here's how to prepare the drink:

  • Step 1: Pour Gin, Brandy, Bourbon, lime, and bitters into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake the cocktail until well-chilled.
  • Step 2: Strain the cocktail into the glass over fresh ice.
  • Step 3: Top with chilled ginger beer and garnish the drink with a lime wedge or wheel.


The Dying Bastard already is a twist on the Suffering Bastard, adding Bourbon to the mix. But there's another Bastard in the trio - the Dead Bastard.

This variation adds Bourbon and Rum to the list of ingredients. Hence, this recipe includes four different spirits. And just like the other two creations, the Dead Bastard is also a brainchild of Joe Scialom.

Dying Bastard cocktail garnished with lime peel

Dying Bastard

A twist on the Suffering bastard, adding Bourbon to the recipe.
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: African
Keyword: angostura, bourbon, Brandy, Gin, lime juice
Servings: 1
Cost: $3.50


  • 0.5 oz Brandy
  • 0.5 oz Gin
  • 0.5 oz Bourbon
  • 0.5 oz Lime juice
  • 2 Dashes of Aromatic bitters
  • 3 oz Ginger beer


  • Add all ingredients except ginger beer into a cocktail shaker with ice.
  • Shake for 15 - 18 seconds and then strain into a Collins or Highball glass.
  • Top with chilled ginger beer and garnish with a wedge of lime.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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