The world is finally starting to get back to some type of normal, and restrictions are slowly being lifted throughout the world. To be ready to celebrate those joyous occasions, you need to be prepared. You need to master the best cocktails for the next get-together you’re going to host in the near future.
The last couple of years gave us ample opportunity to amp our mixology game. If you read my previous article on Master Classes, you know that the mixology class is one of my must-try.
These last few months I’ve been eyeing a few delicious cocktails that were new to me, and a couple of old favorites. In the next little while, I’m planning to try many variations before it’s time that I show off my skills to my close friends and family.
Since I will do it from the privacy of my house, I’m not too worried about the alcohol intake. But there are a couple of recipes that will taste good even without any hard liquor.
Let’s see which cocktails I’ve chosen to experiment with. Those are the basic ones anyone should master for their next get-together. If you get at least a couple of those right, you will be a much-appreciated host.
A gin-based cocktail, this one is super easy to mix. If you don’t like gin you can make it with vodka instead. At the bottom of a shaker, muddle some mint leaves with 15 ml of sugar syrup. Add 50 ml of gin or vodka and some ice cubes and shake. To finish it off, just add 25 ml of ginger beer, then pour it into a tall glass. You can garnish it with mint leaves generously.
A sharp and bitter drink, it might not be up to everyone’s alley. But once you taste it, you might change your mind. Although it contains five ingredients, it is very easy to master. The recipe calls for two parts bourbon or rye whisky (whichever you have handy) and one part red vermouth. Add two dashes of Angostura bitters that you can even find at upscale grocery stores with 5 ml of cherry syrup. Just mix them all up in a large jug full of ice, then strain into a cocktail glass. Top it off with a maraschino cherry if you wish.
A classy cocktail that will impress any dinner guest. This is one of the more complicated recipes on this list because of one of its ingredients. It’s actually pretty simple to master, don’t get intimidated. Add 60 ml of whiskey with a tablespoon of sugar, the juice of half a lemon, along an egg white into a cocktail shaker. Make sure you shake it well so the egg white will froth. Then strain it into a glass and serve immediately. Cheers!
Since I absolutely adore Cointreau, this has become one of my favorite cocktails. Plus it’s very easy to mix. Just mix a double shot of any Cognac or Brandy you have on hand with a simple shot of Cointreau into a cocktail shaker. Give it a good shake, and strain into a glass. Add half a juiced lemon and some ice cubes, and voilà. To garnish, you can add a slice of orange or a lemon twist.
Another popular cocktail from Cuba, this is also very good in the summer. Although there are a few variations of this versatile cocktail, this is the easiest and simplest recipe available. Mix 50ml of white rum with 10ml of sugar syrup and the juice of half a lime in a cocktail shaker. Shake well, then strain into a cocktail glass and enjoy.
This Cuban classic is a favorite of mine, especially in the warmer months. This rum-based drink can be converted to a virgin refreshing beverage by omitting the alcohol. In a jug, muddle a small bunch of mint leaves with the juice of one lime and a tablespoon of granulated sugar. Pour it into a tall glass over ice, add 60 ml of white rum, then fill the glass with soda water. You can add more mint leaves or a lime wedge for garnish.
This drink screams vacation time, but it’s a great cocktail to enjoy at any time, as far as I’m concerned. Add 50ml of tequila with a tablespoon of Triple Sec and half a lime, juiced, to a cocktail shaker. Then wet the rim of a glass in lime juice and press it into a plate of salt. After you give the shaker a good shake, pour the contents into the salt-rimmed glass. Simple yet refreshing to enjoy for any occasion.
A very simple yet complex drink that offers lots of flavors. It originated in Louisville, and master distiller James E. Pepper was the one who invented this cocktail. An acquired taste, some might find it a bit too strong. You can mostly taste the whiskey, but the bitters and the sugar provide a nice underlayer. So you mix the 60 ml of Scotch whiskey or bourbon you have and 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar in a glass. Then you fill the glass with ice and add two dashes of bitters. If you like you can add soda water, or drink it as is.
This is the quintessential New York drink. If like me, you loved the Sex and the City series, then you’re very familiar with Cosmopolitan cocktail. A favorite of many ladies, the alcohol content will put any man to shame. Don’t be fooled by its pretty color, it is a powerful drink! Shake 45 ml of vodka, 15ml Triple Sec, 30ml cranberry juice with 10 ml of lime juice in a cocktail shaker with ice. Strain the mixture in a martini glass, and garnish it with a lime wedge.
The most classic and timeless cocktail, the dry martini is truly an acquired taste. But once you develop a taste for this cocktail, most likely it will become your go-to drink on many occasions. Easy to make and doesn’t require many ingredients, I suggest you invest in good quality spirits if you want to get the most out of it. Shake up 60ml of dry gin and 15ml dry vermouth in a cocktail shaker then strain it into a martini glass. To finish it off, add an olive, or a few, for garnish.
There are so many cocktails to choose from, I thought I would start you off with these popular yet simple ones to woo your guests at your next get-together. Let me know which ones do you prefer?