'Cocktail Concoctions' on Serious Eats

Time for a Drink: the Sidecar

As with most cocktails, the origins of the Sidecar are hazy (be suspicious of those who state with certainty when or where the Sidecar was first mixed), but this entrancing mixture of brandy, lemon juice and orange liqueur started making the rounds in the most fashionable watering holes in London and Paris during the 1920s. Very simple in structure, the Sidecar is complex enough in flavor to satisfy even the most jaded palates, but not so over-the-top with mixological gewgaws as to frighten away the casual tippler. More

Time for a Drink: the New York Sour

This simple twist on the whiskey sour made the rounds for several decades during the late 19th century under an assortment of names. A base of American whiskey (rye is the desired variety here) is fleshed out with a little fresh lemon juice and smoothed over with a touch of sugar; the crowning touch comes with a float of dry red wine. More

Time for a Drink: the Restraining Order

Credited to Philadelphia bartender Colin Shearn of Franklin Mortgage & Investment Co., the Restraining Order is based on the mellow, vegetal character of reposado tequila. Shearn complements the tequila with a dose of Aperol, a bright, low-alcohol aperitif liqueur with a potent, complex flavor dominated by bitter oranges and rhubarb. Accented with several dashes of celery bitters and a big squeeze of orange peel atop the finished cocktail, the drink has a powerful pop of herbaceous flavor and a delicate, nuanced balance. More

Time for a Drink: the Highball

Short of simply popping open a beer or a straight slug of whiskey, there are few drinks that are less labor-intensive than the venerable highball. With Labor Day this weekend, we figured this was the perfect drink to share. You could reasonably ask the question, "Do we really need a recipe for something so easy?" but while this simple (and flexible) mix of booze, bubbles and ice can be prepared with almost zero thought, a little care in the execution can make all the difference between a watery glass of meh and a damn refreshing drink. More

Time for a Drink: the Martini

There are few recipes in cocktail-dom that inspire as much zealotry as that of the Martini. But before you sharpen your keyboard to type out "heresy!" for other versions of the drink, keep one thing in mind: the Martini is way more flexible than you might think. More

Time for a Drink: El Floridita Daiquiri

There are many lame adaptations of the classic daiquiri, but some daiquiri relatives are worth getting to know. El Floridita Daiquiri was popularly prepared in Havana in the 1930s, and is a slight variation on the original daiquiri that's worth adding to the regular drinks rotation. More

Time for a Drink: Dubonnet Cocktail

Sometimes known as the Zaza, the Dubonnet Cocktail dates to around 1914. A simple mixture of dry gin and the French aperitif wine called Dubonnet, the Dubonnet Cocktail has the oomph you look for in a cocktail along with the mild bitter edge that makes it perfect as a pre-dinner drink. More

Time for a Drink: Mint Julep

Saturday is Derby Day, which means that across the country, celebratory sippers will be nipping at their Mint Juleps, and more than 80,000 of the drinks are expected to be served over derby weekend at Churchill Downs Tragically, most of these juleps are likely to suck. With a formula almost as old as the republic, the mint julep is a product of an era in which things were done much slower. Somewhat labor-intensive to properly make, a good mint julep can't be rushed, and cranking them out by the hundreds using prepared mixes and flavored syrups can only result in sadness. More

Adonis

Once a regular drink at the Old Waldorf-Astoria Bar during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the Adonis was named for a popular 1884 musical that was the Mamma Mia of its era. A simple combination of dry sherry and sweet vermouth, the Adonis is a great introduction to the realm of aperitif cocktails. More

Zombie Punch

Perhaps the only thing more frightening than the idea of zombies roaming the city in search of fresh brains is the concoction you'll find in front of you when you say "Zombie" in your average bar. More

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