Cocktails Collection

Rum, vodka, gin and virgin, long or short, straight up or with a twist - a real ‘cocktail’ of drinks recipes.

Cosmopolitan

The Cosmo, as it is affectionately known, is definitely one for the ladies, in particular those four sassy New Yorkers from Sex and the City. Bartender Cheryl Cook takes the credit for inventing the Cosmopolitan in the 1980s at her South Beach bar in Florida, but a similar drink was popular before that during the late 1970s at San Francisco’s gay bars. However, it was only when Toby Cecchini began serving Cosmopolitans at his Odeon bar in New York in the 1990s that it became the iconic cocktail it is today.

Black russian

At the height of the Cold War in 1949, Gustave Tops, the bartender at the Hotel Metropole in Brussels, created this blend of vodka and coffee liqueur for one of his favourite clients, Perle Mesta. The lively socialite was America’s lady ambassador to Luxembourg at the time.

Lemon drop

Sharp and sweet, this cool lemon classic is guaranteed to turn a quiet evening into something special. Sugar the rim of the glass and chill well before pouring in the seductive citrus mix.

Strawberry martini

A gorgeous, strawberry-pink confection that’s sweet, smooth and fruity. It’s definitely one for the girls. Make the drink in summer when fresh strawberries are at their most luscious and fragrant; freeze any extra strawberry purée for another time.

Apple martini

The classic Martini mix lends itself to all manner of exciting variations, and shaking vodka or gin with fruit liqueurs and juices works particularly well. Make sure both the bottles and the glass are very well chilled before starting to make the drink.

Midori martini

Sharply refreshing, a well-chilled Martini spiked with the tang of citrus is the perfect way to unwind after a long and exhausting day. Corporate whiz kid or not, you’ll still feel like a millionaire as you raise the cool, frosted glass to your lips.

Chocolate martini

When an enterprising bartender created this creamy, frothy confection, he fulfilled every chocoholic’s fantasy. Use dark bitter chocolate with at least 70% cocoa solids for a seriously indulgent hit.

Blue heaven martini

Dreaming of tropical skies and deep blue seas? This classy cocktail will transport you to an exotic beach without the hassle of stepping on a plane. The drink can be stirred or shaken as you prefer.

Classic martini

The true origins of the Martini are as clouded by myth and mystery as all other legends. Did this iconic cocktail evolve from an 1862 drink called a “Martinez”, a sweet blend of gin, bitters and red vermouth? Should Martini di Arma di Taggia, the barman at the Knickerbocker Hotel in New York, take the credit with his 1911 mix of gin, white vermouth and orange bitters? Or should we believe the plaque on the corner of Alhambra Street and Masonic Street in Martinez, California, claiming the first Martini was mixed there? Whatever the truth, there’s no disputing the Martini’s enduring popularity, and every bartender will tell you his or hers is the real deal!

Gin rickey

Believed to have been created in the late nineteenth century for political lobbyist Joe Rickey, who was a regular at Shoemaker’s Restaurant in Washington DC. The original Rickey mix contained no sugar — just lime juice, gin and a squirt of soda — but a little Grenadine takes the sharp edge off the drink, and gives it a pretty pink hue.

Negroni

In the early twentieth century, Count Camillo Negroni, a Florentine nobleman and a regular in the city’s Casoni Bar, wanted a change from his usual Americano cocktail, so he ordered it spiked with a little gin. Happy to oblige a valued customer, the bartender promptly created the perfect pre-dinner drink — a mellow harmony of bitter and sweet that’s guaranteed to stimulate the appetite.

Berry breeze

A relaxing way to watch the late summer sun go down when you’re chilling out after a busy day.

Gimlet

Back in the days when both spirits and beers were stored in wooden barrels, bartenders used a small, sharp tool called a gimlet to tap into them. This inspired the creation of this short, citrussy cocktail. In 1953 Raymond Chandler added to the gimlet’s popularity by making it a favourite tipple of his legendary private eye, Philip Marlowe, in The Long Goodbye.

Bronx

Johnny Solon, the bartender of New York’s Waldorf Astoria hotel during the early 1900s, took credit for inventing the Bronx cocktail in 1906 when the hotel was just known simply as the Waldorf, and it stood on the site where the Empire State Building is today. Asked by a customer one night to create a new cocktail for him, Johnny christened his gin, vermouth and orange juice concoction a “Bronx”. Quizzed over the name, he replied his inspiration had come from a recent visit to the Bronx Zoo where he’d seen so many strange creatures it was impossible to tell the difference between the zoo and his bar.

White lady

This drink was first shaken and strained by bartender Harry McElhone during his tenure at Ciro’s Club off London’s Haymarket in 1919, one of the favourite A-list hangouts of its day. The contrast of sweet Cointreau with sharp citrus makes this the perfect aperitif.

Rum sour

The sunny Caribbean island of Jamaica is famous for its rum, but while today most visitors are more than happy to drink the liquid gold where it is produced, before the Second World War Jamaica’s distillers had to ship their best brews to England. Convinced by the rum connoisseurs of the day that London’s damp foggy air was essential for turning their precious liquor into the tropical equivalent of a single malt, barrels were shipped across the Atlantic to be aged in the bonded warehouses of the capital’s Docklands.

Daiquiri

The classic daiquiri of rum, lime and sugar was dreamed up around 1900 during a hot Cuban summer when Jennings Cox, an American mining engineer who was working on the island, added fresh lime juice and sugar to the local rum because his gin supplies had run out. With important guests to entertain, he christened the mix “daiquiri” after a town near Santiago on Cuba’s south-east tip.

Between the sheets

In the heady days of 1930s America, bartenders vied with each other to keep their customers coming back for more by creating cocktails with more and more seductive names. This sexy mix was an instant success and remains just as popular today.

Hurricane janet

A hurricane might seem an unlikely cause for celebration, but the huge storm that hit the Caribbean island of Grenada in 1955 inspired this great party drink. A similar cocktail, with coconut added to the mix, hails from the same island and bears the name “Pain Killer”.

Sidecar

Here’s another classic reputedly created at the end of the First World War by legendary barman, Harry McElhone, for one of the regulars who frequented his New York Bar in Paris. The customer, an army captain, always arrived at the bar riding in the sidecar of a motorbike driven by his chauffeur.

Viva sangria

Relaxing days by the pool followed by romantic nights under the stars — there’s no better way to relive the pleasures of that lazy Spanish break than with a glass of this refreshing summer drink. If mixing jugs of Sangria for a party, avoid making them more than 2 hours before serving. Keep the jugs tightly covered with plastic wrap, or the red wine will start to oxidise and the drink will lose its freshness.

Stinger

Before the days of Prohibition, this relaxing pick-me-up was served straight up, but gradually more and more customers began requesting it served on the rocks in a sours or an old-fashioned glass. Which way is best? You choose!

Champagne cocktail

This is one of the easiest cocktails to mix, because it requires no special skills or equipment — beyond a steady hand! A drink similar to today’s champagne cocktail first appeared in 1862 in Jerry Thomas’s How to Mix Drinks cocktail book; but it didn’t catch on until 1899, when John Dougherty submitted a version of the cocktail to a New York competition. To recreate John Dougherty’s original drink, rub the sugar cube over the zest of an orange before adding it to the glass. When pouring the champagne, reduce its froth by holding the glass at a 45-degree angle.

Manhattan

Nobody can say for sure when and where this celebrated cocktail was created, but one theory harks back to 1846 when a Maryland bartender mixed while trying to revive a customer who had been injured in a duel. Another points to Winston Churchill’s mother, Jenny Jerome, who in 1874 reputedly asked the Manhattan Club in New York City to invent a cocktail for a banquet she was hosting in honour of Governor Samuel J. Tilden. However, as historians have since pointed out, when the event was supposedly taking place, Jenny was far away in England giving birth to her famous son.

Whisky sour

Sours — cocktails sharpened with a good shot of citrus juice — date from 1850s America, when they were made with brandy. Today, whisky, usually bourbon or Irish whiskey rather than Scotch, is more popular, but any spirit can be used. It’s important to use freshly squeezed lemon juice to achieve the necessary “sour” flavour.

Pomegranate margarita

It’s not surprising that many bartenders have claimed they created the Margarita, one of the world’s most famous cocktails. Carlos “Danny” Herrera’s case is certainly one of the most colourful. In the late 1930s American showgirl Marjorie King was a regular customer at Herrera’s Bar, Mexico. Marjorie was allergic to all spirits apart from tequila, and, because she refused to drink it straight, Danny struggled to serve her. One night he came up with the idea of blending tequila and Cointreau with fresh lime juice and crushed ice, a concoction he dubbed “Margarita”, the Mexican version of Marjorie.

Mint julep

The first record of a mint julep being enjoyed dates from 1803, when John Davis, an Englishman working as a tutor in Virginia at one of the great Southern plantation houses, wrote of “a dram of spirituous liquor that has mint in it, taken by Virginians of a morning”. The drink later crossed the Atlantic – not with John Davis, but with the sea captain and novelist Frederick Marryatt who was said to have loved both the mint julep and the American ladies who drank it. Today the mint julep is synonymous with the Kentucky Derby. More than 80,000 are downed at the annual two-day event.

White wine strawberry spritzer

Marinating the strawberries in the wine for one hour gives the wine time to absorb their sweet, scented flavour. If you want a less alcoholic drink, increase the quantity of mineral or soda water.

Bellini

An exhibition during the 1940s of paintings by the Venetian artist Bellini prompted Giuseppi Cipriani, the bartender of the legendary Harry’s Bar in Venice, to mark the occasion with this champagne and peach juice cocktail. A true Bellini is made with fresh white peaches, but because their season is short, most amateur bartenders resort to using the more readily available yellow-fleshed fruit — unless, of course, they’ve stocked their freezer with enough white peach juice to see them through the year. Prosecco, the Italian sparkling wine, is used in this recipe instead of the original champagne.

Mimosa

Champagne hasn’t earned its nickname “giggle wine” for nothing, as no other drink can match it for making a party go with a swing. If the genuine article is beyond your budget, substitute a good sparkling wine such as Cava.

Royale blue

Another cool sparkler that makes the most of Blue Curaçao’s dazzling hue. A kiwi makes a spectacular decoration, but if it’s unavailable, tuck a string of red currants, black currants, or white currants over the side of the glass instead.

Black velvet

Champagne was a popular celebration drink among upper-class Victorians, but in 1861 the sudden death of the Queen’s Consort, Prince Albert, plunged the whole of England into mourning. Still wanting to serve champagne but feeling it should be in mourning too, the bartender at Brooks’s Club in London combined it with Guinness as a suitably sombre way to mark the occasion. He dubbed the cocktail Black Velvet and served it in a beer tankard, but today a goblet or champagne flute is normally used. The drink became a favourite of Prince Otto von Bismarck, and in Germany it is known by his name.

Framboise kir royale

Perfect for an alfresco summer party when soft fruits are at their sweetest and most fragrant. Because raspberries freeze well, this warm-weather sparkler can be enjoyed all year.

Wild hibiscus royale

Australian wild hibiscus flowers preserved in syrup make an unusual and eye-catching addition to a celebration drink. If the petals stubbornly remain closed, push a maraschino cherry into the centre of the flower to encourage them to open and to hold them in place. Jars of the flowers can be bought from gourmet shops or the Internet.

Passion fruit bellini

Not only does this cocktail look beautiful, but its intoxicating flavour and aroma will instantly transport you to a world of white coral beaches and warm blue seas. Prosecco can be used instead of champagne, if you wish.

In the pink buck’s fizz

The original Buck’s Fizz, made by mixing two-thirds champagne with one-third freshly squeezed orange juice, was created after the First World War by a Mr. McGarry, the bartender at the time of Buck’s Club in London’s Mayfair. Very specific about the proportions of his drink, he would no doubt have frowned on any upstart adding a dash of Grenadine, but the resulting pink glow makes this cocktail the ultimate romantic tipple, perfect for Valentine’s Day or a special evening in.

Red berry soda

A good summer party drink when home-grown strawberries are at their best. Although strawberries lose their texture when frozen, it doesn’t matter as they are puréed for this drink. If you have extra strawberries freeze them to use later in the year.

Papaya frappé

Get a refreshing flavour of the tropics with this long, cooling drink. When buying exotic fruit, check its ripeness by smelling it. If the fruit smells sweet and fragrant, that’s how it will taste; but if it has no scent, it will probably have no taste either.

Pisco sour

The national drink of Peru and Chile, Pisco is a brandy distilled from locally grown grapes. It is traditionally shaken with sugar syrup, lime juice, egg white and Angostura to make a Pisco Sour. In Chilean bars, regulars often drink Pisco neat poured over ice, something the average tourist would be wise to avoid!

Strawberry pimm’s

Fruit salad in a glass tankard is how many fans think of Pimm’s No. 1 Cup. This gin-based cocktail mix grew from humble beginnings as a house specialty during the 1840s at James Pimm’s London Oyster Bar. It has grown to become a permanent fixture on today’s English social calendar, enjoyed at all the best Henley, Ascot and Wimbledon parties. Fresh strawberries muddled with the traditional mix add a refreshing, summery flavour. Mixed in a jug, this makes a good alfresco party drink — increase the quantities according to the number of your guests.

Caipirinha

Peru and Chile might have Pisco, but Brazil can claim an equally potent liquor as its national drink — Cachaca (pronounced kah-sha-sah), a rum-like white spirit distilled from pressed sugarcane. On hot sunny days the beautiful and tanned people packing Copacabana beach keep cool sipping this refreshing citrus cocktail. The lime is always muddled with the sugar, never squeezed straight into the glass.

B-52

Layered drinks are guaranteed to elicit gasps of admiration and a round of applause from your guests, and the B-52, named after the long-range bomber aircraft used in the Vietnam War, is one of the most popular. Various establishments lay claim to its invention; these include the famous Alice’s Restaurant on Malibu pier in California, unintentionally immortalised by Arlo Guthrie in his 60s hit single about his friend Alice.

Golden cadillac

White crème de cacao shaken with Galliano and cream gives this cocktail a gorgeous golden hue. It also makes a slightly sweeter drink than if the more familiar brown crème de cacao is used.

Grasshopper

Crème de menthe turns this creamy treat a cool shade of green, but it’s important to use white crème de cacao as brown crème de cacao will turn it into a dark and muddy pool — although the drink will taste just as good! A light sprinkle of grated chocolate dusted over the surface makes a pretty garnish.

Americano

The Americano was created in the 1860s by Gaspare Campari at his Campari Bar. Later it became the inspiration for another classic cocktail, the Negroni, where gin was added to the original mix. Gaspare christened his creation a Milano-Torino — Milan being home to Campari and Turin where Cinzano produced its sweet red vermouth. During the years of Prohibition, the number of Americans visiting the bar soared and the cocktail was subsequently renamed the Americano in their honour.

Frozen banana daiquiri

Sixteen years after the first daiquiris were downed in Cuba, the La Floridita Bar in Havana added crushed ice to create the world’s first frozen daiquiri. Depending on the ripeness and sweetness of the fruit used, you may need to add a little sugar syrup to the finished cocktail.

Piña colada

The first report of a drink called a piña colada can be traced back to the December 1922 edition of Travel magazine. Translated from Spanish, the name means “strained pineapple”, and back then the cocktail was simply fresh pineapple juice, ice, sugar, lime juice and white rum shaken together and strained into a glass. Ramon “Monchito” Marrero is one of several bartenders claiming the credit for adding coconut milk. A plaque in Puerto Rico states he served the first modern piña colada in the bar of the Caribe Hilton Hotel on August 15, 1954, after spending three months perfecting his mix.

Mai tai

In 1944, Victor Bergeron, better known throughout the restaurant world as “Trader Vic”, sat down one evening with the bartender of his Polynesian restaurant in Oakland, California, and the two of them decided to invent a new drink. The resulting mix of Jamaican rum, lime juice, orgeat syrup, Orange Curaçao and rock candy was offered to customers. One who tried it immediately exclaimed “Mai Tai, Roa Ae!” — which, as any Tahitian-speaker can tell you, means “out of this world”.

Lime shooter

If you prefer a long drink that you can sip and savour, shooters are definitely not for you. As their name suggests, these cocktails are served in small, straight glasses that have a capacity of little more than a mouthful. If you’re with a group of friends, line up the shooters on the bar, toast each other in unison, and toss the contents of the glass down in one.

Pussyfoot

A virgin cocktail dating from the 1920s and the years of Prohibition, it was named for William E. “Pussyfoot” Johnson, an anti-drink campaigner who fought fiercely to convince his fellow men of the evils of drink. Things weren’t all they seemed, however; in 1926 the same Mr. Johnson was forced to admit that, in the pursuit of his cause, he had had to drink “gallons of alcohol” to give him strength to keep going.

Night owl

Coffee, orange and cream make an irresistible after-dinner drink, especially during the cold winter months when you’re curled up in a soft, deep armchair beside a blazing fire. The three ingredients can be shaken together or the cream can be floated on top.

Brandy alexander

A gin-based cocktail called simply “Alexander” was popular during the early part of the twentieth century. The brandy Alexander was reputedly created in 1922, as an after-dinner drink to celebrate the London wedding of the Princess Royal to the British aristocrat Viscount Lascelles.

Tropical fruit batida

Batida is a Brazilian cocktail that features the national drink, Cachaca, with sugar and various tropical fruits. Almost any mixture of fruit seems to work. The Cachaca can also be replaced with vodka or white rum.

Planter’s punch

This generic name covers the wide variety of simple, but potent, rum-based punches served all over the West Indian islands. The rum is mixed with different fruit juices and sometimes given an extra kick with locally grown spices such as nutmeg or cayenne. The first reference to a Planter’s Punch can be traced to a poem in the New York Times on August 8, 1908, extolling the virtues of a drink made with Old Jamaican rum that packed a serious punch.

Zombie

Don Beach created the Zombie cocktail in 1934 at his Beachcomber restaurant in Hollywood after asking a hungover customer how he felt. His exotic brews became the stuff of legend, with regular clients no doubt providing inspiration for many of his cocktails, although whether the Missionary’s Downfall (fresh pineapple, lime juice, mint, rum and peach brandy) was among them is not recorded. The original Zombie was a mix of 11 different ingredients, including a shot of 151-proof rum that was floated on top. The recipe given here is a slightly simplified — and marginally less lethal — version.

Jamaican rum punch

This one is from Jamaica, where there are many mixes featuring the locally brewed rum — all designed to seduce visitors as well as locals looking to chill out as the sun goes down.

Mojito

Along with cigars, the Mojito is one of Cuba’s most famous exports. Its name (pronounced mo-hee-toe) comes from the African word “mojo”, meaning to cast a little spell. Ernest Hemingway was known to down the odd Mojito in Havana’s La Bodeguita del Medio bar, and James Bond followed his lead in Die Another Day.

Pousse café

Layered cocktails not only look impressive but they make very good after-dinner drinks. Each liquor has a different density, so as long as the heaviest liquid is poured into the glass first, followed by the second heaviest, the third heaviest, and so on, finishing with the lightest, the individual liquids will remain separate, producing a rainbow-layered drink. In general terms, syrups and sweet drinks are the heaviest, flavoured liqueurs are in the middle and spirits are the lightest, but you may need to experiment first, as the densities of individual liquors can vary from one manufacturer to another.

Rusty nail

Drambuie is a Scottish liqueur of Scotch whisky flavored with honey, so it’s no surprise that its Gaelic name translates as “the drink that satisfies”. Serve this over ice or straight up, as you prefer.

Walk the line

Ginger is well-known for settling a stomach with a mind of its own, so this long, spicy refresher should have you back on your feet and ready to rock ‘n’ roll all over again.

Hair of the dog

Honey is prized for its soothing qualities and combined with whisky and double cream, it’s a good way to shake off those hangover blues.

Lime, mint & lemongrass sparkler

Fragrant mint combined with exotic lemongrass and sparkling apple juice makes a delicious, long and cooling beverage.

Piña moclada

Cool, creamy, and refreshing, serve this virgin cousin of the Piña Colada in a tall glass with plenty of ice.

Ice bite

More than a hint of pink makes this long, tall cooler just right for a summer’s day. If making it for a picnic, put the ingredients into a thermos with the ice and shake well before serving.

Kiwi crush

Served in a cocktail glass with a frosted sugar rim this will bring a smile to the face of teens desperate to emulate their older siblings and drivers wanting to get into the party spirit without the alcohol.

Shirley temple

Probably the first virgin “mocktail” was named in honour of the 1930s child film star. It makes the perfect drink for pretty girls everywhere. The ginger ale adds a nice spicy edge to the sweet and long drink.

Mango & coconut refresher

Another taste of the sun-kissed Caribbean, courtesy of this smooth, creamy cooler. Use a very ripe, sweet and fragrant mango so the finished drink has plenty of fresh, fruity flavour.

Bullshot

If you can’t face any of the appetisers on the lunch menu, this full-flavoured cocktail would make a revitalising alternative to soup. Chill the bouillon well before shaking it with the other ingredients.

Eggnog

Originally a punch made with milk and wine or sherry, eggnog became a popular tipple in English taverns during the eighteenth century when it was served in small, carved mugs known as noggins. The drink later became associated with Christmas, with many Victorians believing the celebrations hadn’t properly begun until they’d downed a glass of eggnog — which no doubt helped cure the effects of over-indulgence the night before. When the drink crossed the Atlantic to America, rum replaced the sherry and became so popular that even George Washington created his own recipe, which included rye whisky, rum and sherry.

Fluffy duck

If you’re hungover, one look at this smooth, creamy treat should make you feel better right away. The smoothing effect of Advocaat, with its light almond flavour, mixed with orange juice, cream, lemonade and a gentle kick of rum, is ideal for banishing those “morning after” blues.

Snowball

Egg yolks, vanilla, brandy, and sugar make up the liqueur Advocaat — almost a breakfast in a bottle! In the 1960s the Snowball cocktail was the height of chic drinking and though its star may have waned a little it still has tons of retro cool and tastes delicious.

Wake-up call

If you have an important appointment the morning after a heavy night, this will probably get you there in time to do business better than the most insistent alarm! A little grated chocolate sprinkled over the creamy coffee drink also proves that every little bit helps.

Red restorer

Deflect attention from the red eyes with this bright and breezy morning-after brew. The long list of superfood hits found in pomegranates and cranberries means it’s also doing you a lot of good!

Tokyo bloody mary

The traditional Bloody Mary hangover cure was created in 1921 at Harry’s Bar in Paris, but the inspiration for its name was reputedly America’s sweetheart, Mary Pickford, rather than the unfortunate Mary Queen of Scots. Although not even her critics implied the silent-movie star was in need of morning-after restoratives, she had previously drunk a similar cocktail, so the new drink was named after her — blood depicting the tomato juice rather than any reflection on the lady herself!

Tom collins

This famous cocktail’s history goes back to London in the early 1800s. John Collins, the head waiter at Limmer’s Hotel and Coffee House in Mayfair, mixed a popular drink using Dutch Genever gin, but his sling failed to catch on in the United States until a bartender made it with Old Tom Gin, a London gin with a sweet flavour more suited to American tastes. A version of the cocktail — the John Collins — is made with bourbon or whisky.

Long island iced tea

Not quite as innocent as it might sound, this is a hit-the-spot mix of four or five white spirits. Many variations using different spirit combinations exist, some leaving out the tequila, others the vodka, but however you mix it, it’s still liquid relaxation in a glass.

Sea breeze

This long, cool cocktail dates from the 1930s, when it was made with gin instead of vodka, plus apricot brandy and lemon juice, with a splash of Grenadine to provide a feminine pink hue. In 1980s California, the popularity of the grapefruit diet with the local girls led to grapefruit juice replacing the apricot brandy and cranberry juice the Grenadine.

Harvey wallbanger

Everyone agrees that world-champion mixologist Donato “Duke” Antone created this killer cocktail in the 1950s at his Blackwatch Bar in Hollywood. However, the story that he actually made the first one for a California surfer called Harvey, who, wanting to drown his sorrows after suffering a wipe-out in a competition, collided with the wall as he tried to leave, is probably the stuff of legend. A less colourful explanation suggests the cocktail’s name was inspired by the sight of the tall, leggy Galliano bottles wobbling and banging against the wall as nimble-fingered barmen slid them back behind the bar.

Screwdriver

Long and cool, this elegant cocktail is a comparative newcomer to the bar scene. It was reputedly invented by an American oilman working in Iran in the 1950s who, lacking the appropriate long-handled spoon, stirred his sundowner with a screwdriver from his toolbox. Squeeze in the juice straight from the orange for the freshest and most concentrated flavour.

Moscow mule

Jack Morgan owned the Cock ‘n’ Bull saloon in Los Angeles during the 1940s. He despaired of his customers ever getting a taste for the ginger beer he’d stockpiled in his cellar until John Martin, the West Coast PR supremo for Smirnoff vodka, walked into his bar one night. Together they devised a new cocktail they christened the Moscow Mule. Although it was traditionally served in a small copper mug, modern bartenders usually find a tall highball glass more practical — and more attractive.

Tequila sunrise

This 1930s Mexican mix of tequila and orange juice might have inspired a hit song for the Eagles and a blockbuster film for Mel Gibson, but for cocktail lovers everywhere it will always be a colourful recreation of the blazing sun rising over the parched Mexican desert.

Horse’s neck

Originally the Horse’s Neck was a non-alcoholic concoction of ginger ale, ice, and lemon zest. It was around 1910 that serious drinkers decided the smooth and silky beverage needed a good kick, and added bourbon. Other spirits have been experimented with over the years, but today the most popular ingredient is brandy.

Cuba libre

Probably the most famous rum cocktail in the world, the first Cuba Libres were reputedly drunk in 1900 to toast both the island’s newly won independence and the arrival of the latest must-have soft drink — Coca-Cola.

Cape codder

A popular long drink named after the summer playground along the Massachusetts coast. One thing’s for certain — there can’t be many nicer ways to unwind than sitting at your seaside cottage, watching the sun set over the Atlantic and slowly sipping a cool Cape Codder.

Blue lagoon

When Blue Curaçao first appeared in the 1960s, cocktail drinkers were quickly seduced by the cool, lagoon-like concoctions appearing in their glasses. This blend of vodka, Blue Curaçao and lemonade was the creation of Andy McElhone, son of the legendary Harry of Harry’s New York Bar, although his original recipe was made with lemon juice rather than lemonade.

Raffles singapore sling

The recipe for this world-famous sling, which was created around 1915 by Ngiam Tong Boon, the bartender of the Raffles Hotel in Singapore, and served in the Long Bar to luminaries such as Somerset Maugham, Noel Coward and film star Douglas Fairbanks, was mislaid long ago. The modern mix probably bears little resemblance to the original, but it’s still a hit with tourists and high-flying executives, who pack into the Long Bar to sip the legendary cocktail. In time-honoured fashion, customers toss the shells of the monkey nuts served with their drinks onto the floor. The sound of the shells crunching underfoot echoes the sound made by feet walking over the dried leaves that were scattered on the floors of the old plantation houses.

Fruity gin fizz

A light and fragrant drink made all the more glamorous with a dash of sparkling wine.

Popular Recipe Collections

View all our recipe collections