Being able to make a good drink is a skill that’s sure to impress – with the added bonus that it’s much more inexpensive than ordering that same drink at a bar. It’s easier than you think – try these basics and you’ll be on your way.
We won’t insult your intelligence by going on about the obvious – gin and tonic, vodka soda, rum and coke, whiskey and soda – they’re all exactly what they sound like. However, many drinks just this simple are disguised under complex sounding names. Add a squeeze of lime to your rum and coke, for example, and you have the very sophisticated sounding Cuba Libre. Vodka and orange juice sounds much more impressive when called a Screwdriver. Switch out the orange juice for some cranberry juice, and you’ve got a Cape Codder (and you thought it was just a plain old vodka cranberry.) Make the very classy Mimosa for a posh feeling brunch favorite- just champagne and orange juice for a very happy breakfast.
Keepin’ it Classic
Three serious drinks every sophisticated gentleman or lady should know – a Martini, a Manhattan, and an Old Fashioned. A Martini is actually quite simple; vodka or gin, a splash (or no) dry vermouth, shaken with ice, and served with olives, cocktail onions, or a twist. Make it dirty (oo la la) by adding a little olive juice to the mix. You could stir it rather than shaking it, but why not do like James Bond?
The Manhattan combines whiskey, sweet vermouth, and a couple shakes of bitters, shaken or stirred, poured in a cocktail glass, and garnished with a cherry for a sipper that will make you want to pull out your most important-sounding vocabulary words. For a drink that truly makes the perfect accessory to any suit, try and Old Fashioned. Muddle a sugar cube with a few shakes of bitters, add bourbon, and garnish with a twist.
Happy hour gets a little happier with some barstool favorites that are easier to make than you might think. Take the Cosmopolitan for example. Throw vodka, triple sec, a splash of cranberry juice (we love it with a very small splash) and a squeeze of lime into a shaker with some ice, mix it up, and voila! You’re in deliciously pink business. A fancy-feeling Lemon Drop Martini doesn’t take any fancy tricks to prepare either – vodka, a touch of triple sec, a generous bit of lemon juice, and a spoonful of sugar is all it takes to make this dangerously good concoction.
Feeling a little tropical? Whip up a Mojito – muddle lime, fresh mint, and a little sugar to taste, add white rum and soda. Give it a stir and be transported to your own tropical island. For another vacation reminiscent option, a classic Margarita can’t be beat. In it’s purest form, a Margarita is simply tequila, triple sec (or other orange flavored liqueur), and lime or lemon juice. If you like a good salted rim, pour some salt on a plate, wet the edge of the glass, and then dip in the salt. Is that a Jimmy Buffet song I hear?
Almost any other cocktail you can dream up is just a variation on the basics – so get creative! Happy mixing!