By Damian George
There are few things more aspirational than being a fully suited-up man who can confidently talk about the cocktail they’re drinking with an air of casual familiarity. Globalisation has ensured a vast variety of cocktails available that are interesting to taste, inventive to make, and often use exotic ingredients. Some drinks, however, come with a greater sense of history, novelty, or discovery about their origins.
Any of these drinks contain not only a delicate buzz but also the ability to make a man feel just the slightest bit more sophisticated. Read up before you order your next drink:
This elegant, simple cocktail has been immortalised in pop culture by James Bond films. The gin-based drink is ordered dry when one wants little vermouth in the conical glass. Although one could serve it with garnishes like lemon twists or the classic green olive which infuses a delicate burst of tangy flavour. Order a Vesper Martini with a measure of vodka for 3 measures of gin, laced with Lillet, a wine with botanicals, for nights when you want your drink to sport a heavier punch in a champagne goblet.
Typically prepared with rye or Canadian whisky, you’ll find this dark maroon cocktail is also splashed with vermouth and angostura bitters. Commonly garnished with a cherry and served straight up, this one’s a more discerning order than a common Whisky Sour or the fussier Old Fashioned.
Considered a classic aperitif, this concoction is noteworthy for its simplicity and balance. It’s also almost too easy to prepare as one simply pours its three ingredients in equal measure into a mixing glass with ice. These ingredients are gin, vermouth, and Campari that also infuses its characteristic red colour to this deep-bodied, hunger-inducing drink. Depending on your level of experimentation, the orange garnish can make its presence felt.
This light cocktail is versatile, restorative, and even nutritious. There are more recipes and claims to its origin than even an enthusiast would care to count. A commonly agreed upon recipe is a measure of lemon juice, three of vodka, and six of tomato juice stirred into a highball glass with Tabasco, a couple of dashes of Worcestershire sauce, and a celery stick to garnish. A popular antidote to recover from a hangover, Bloody Mary can also be served at brunch, sipped during the day or before dinner. There’s little one could do wrong with this drink apart from serving it in a glass that isn’t rimmed with salt.
There are very few acceptable ways of drinking tequila after the age of 25, but this is definitely one of them. With triple sec, lime or lemon juice, and a glass rimmed with salt or sugar, a Margarita can be served in a variety of ways. It’s typically blended or shaken with ice, firmly establishing it as a prime beach vacation cocktail, although it’s just as loved in any place with a warm temperature.
South America’s definitive export to the world of mixology contains Pisco, a traditionally produced brandy that’s inspiring global curiosity. The liquor is also claimed by Peru as much as Chile, although Spanish settlers developed it in the 16th century. The cocktail is essentially a Whisky Sour with Pisco as a base liquor instead, though regional variations in its recipe exist. Have it for its novelty and your first sip of South American alcohol that isn’t cachaça.
Midori, the base of this cocktail is an unusual liqueur by most counts. With an almost alien-like, bright green colour and a muskmelon flavour, this Japanese liquor is a bit of an acquired taste. However, its initial pleasantly yet peculiar taste is complemented by lemon juice and Cointreau in this recipe, which also takes the edge off its cheeky green colour. Try it to broaden your horizons with the fruity liqueur that’s been pleasing select parts of the world since 1978.
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