There's just something about drinking a classic cocktail that puts you in the right state of mind, don't you think? I prefer my Manhattan on the rocks because the clinking of the ice feels old world and romantic to me. But truthfully, the cold, booze-soaked maraschino cherry is my favorite part! This cocktail goes particularly well with salty, rich dishes, making it the perfect addition to a Thanksgiving menu. But be careful: a couple of these babies and you could be dancing on tables this holiday season. Keep reading to stir up one of your own.
Many people have an aversion to gin; I think it's sad because gin is an incredibly nuanced, highly drinkable, and totally versatile spirit. Erick Castro, who's the gin ambassador for Beefeater and Plymouth, agrees. "The reason people don't like gin is because the most common gin drinks, the martini and the gin and tonic, don't appeal to everyone." Castro wants to start a gin revolution with this amazing-tasting cocktail, the Southside. This classic concoction is a straightforward mixture of gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, and mint, and Castro believes it has the power to change the way gin is seen — much in the way the mojito changed people's perspective of rum. After sipping this refreshing, light beverage, I'm getting behind Castro's cause. To do so too, give the drink a try, and get the recipe after the jump.
When one hears the words "classic cocktails," martinis and Manhattans instantly come to mind. But did you know that champagne has its own signature preparation that dates back to the mid-1800s? It's a simple, but delightful combination of sugar, bitters, and sparkling wine. If making this drink to celebrate the New Year, be sure to select a good quality bubbly. It's not like a mimosa where the flavor of the sparkler will be overshadowed by orange juice; in the champagne cocktail, the bubbly is enhanced by the bitters and sugar. Read more to learn the easy technique.
One of the most admirable writers in my book was an equally prolific drinker: Ernest Hemingway. I love any excuse to channel him whenever I'm out on the town, whether it's with one of his tried-and-true tipples like the Papa Doblé Daiquiri, or a more contemporary drink such the Scarlet Harlot made with apéritifs, which he loved.
But before this weekend, I'd never tried the one cocktail that Hemingway himself invented. It's named Death in the Afternoon, after his famous nonfiction account of traditional Spanish bullfighting.
Appropriately, the classic cocktail contains little more than champagne with a splash of the most legendary bohemian spirit of all, absinthe. The end result? A strong, stiff drink, perfect for the most tormented of writers. Feeling the need for one yourself? Then read more.
For a sweet brunch cocktail that's more complex than the standard mimosa, I turn to fizzes — mixed drinks that consist of a spirit shaken with acid, soda water, and egg whites for frothiness. While they've been around for well over a century, they gained international acclaim in the 1950s. Some of them — like the Ramos gin fizz — remain popular today.
Less commonly seen (but no less satisfying!) is the sloe gin fizz. It's similar to the gin fizz, although the star ingredient is sloe gin, a liqueur made from spirits infused with the sloe berry, an astringent fruit that's related to the plum.
The resulting tipple has a ripe, cassis-like flavor with an effervescent, floral finishing note. By drinking more sloe gin fizzes, I'm hoping to bring them back. Join me in the cause when you keep reading.
Whether you love them or hate them, one thing is for certain, the cosmopolitan is a cocktail that's here to stay. While I rarely order them out anymore, I do enjoy a cosmo from time to time in the comfort of my own home. The recipe is simple, and if you stock your liquor cabinet with citrus-flavored vodka (like I do), they are easy to throw together. Also, if you think about it, the reason the cosmo became so popular is because when made correctly, it's actually a well-balanced, refreshing, and delicious drink. To look at the classic recipe that was originally created by Dale Degroff at the Rainbow Room in the early 90s, read more
I've never been lucky enough to make it to the Kentucky Derby, but this year I am attending a Derby party! I offered to take care of the drinks for my friends, knowing exactly what I'd be serving: mint juleps, of course.
It's unclear how this beverage became the official refreshment of the Kentucky Derby, but it's served with great ceremony at the event, and has been since as far back as 1938.
Since I'm pouring the cocktail for a crowd and I don't have the right number of julep cups, I'm preparing most of the drink ahead. Then, I'll set up a self-serve bar with mason jars for a different kind of Southern charm. Get a laid-back take on the Derby classic when you read on.
On Tuesday night I was lucky enough to be among a select group of Nirvino users to attend a special tasting at San Francisco's Fifth Floor. The restaurant recently launched an old-fashioned tableside bar service in which the bartender, spirits extraordinaire and all-around amazing guy Steven Liles, prepares drinks at your table. The 1950s-style wooden cart is stocked with all the necessary tools to create beautiful and delicious cocktails. While at our table, Liles stirred classic gin martinis and chatted about the history of the cart. He's a seasoned pro who can tell when the concoction is ready simply by touch, but for home bartenders, he recommends 20 stirs to the right and 20 stirs to the left. Since my preferred gin for a martini is Plymouth, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed the Beefeater one — it was perfectly balanced. To get his recipe for the classic cocktail, read more
After shaking up a simple Singapore sling a few weeks ago, I decided I needed to compare it to the real deal. But I realized the classic drink's ingredients weren't just hard to track down; they'd also be expensive to acquire.
I paid a visit to Smuggler's Cove, a tropical escape in San Francisco that specializes in re-creating authentic versions of classic Tiki cocktails. There, owner Martin Cate and bar star Marco Dionysos made me a perfectly balanced version, and chatted with me about the Polynesian pastime. Both bartenders believe that the cocktail's hazy beginnings are the cause of its devolution and waning popularity.
Prominent bar chefs disagree over whether the drink should have pineapple juice. Their recipe, which comes from Singapore Sling authority Ted Haigh, does. In comparison to my simple sling, it's far more complex, with more depth of fruit, less sugar, a clean finish, and a nice, foamy top. Read on for the recipe.
Last Thursday I was invited to an annual charity event hosted by the Guardsmen - a fraternity-like organization for young, professional men. Geeksugar and I made our way upstairs to the balcony bar and ordered Cosmopolitans. The Cosmos were free and flowing however, I was disappointed in the taste because it was obvious that they were made with Cosmo mix rather than refreshing cranberry juice cocktail and fresh squeezed lime. Making a Cosmo is super simple, it's one of the most basic drinks and should be in every hostess' repertoire. To get the recipe, along with a gallery of images from the event, just read more