Food

Upscale Cocktails Recipes To Channel Your Inner Mixologist

upscale-cocktails-recipes-to-channel-your-inner-mixologist

We all love a great cocktail. So entrenched in our collective consciousness, cocktails have the unique power to transport us to a sun-baked tropical paradise, a sultry downtown blues bar or even a bygone era (Roaring 20’s, anyone?) with just a tentative sip.

So strong is the intoxicating (pun intended) appeal of cocktails, there’s even a whole profession dedicated to creating them: mixology. While we can’t all indulge in the luxury of a live-in mixologist (#lifegoals though) we can have some serious fun perfecting our own tasty alcoholic drinks at home.

Whether your favourite tipple is the sanguineous Bloody Mary, the timeless Old Fashioned or the tellingly-named Death in the Afternoon (hats off to Ernest Hemingway for that characteristically deadpan invention. What better epithet for a mix of absinthe and Champagne!?), we’ve got the perfect cocktail for you.

Our mouthwatering list of cocktails will make your mind tipsy and your taste buds tingle with anticipation. And quite possibly, have you scouring the internet to find the perfect alcohol and spirits for some of these classic cocktails. 

You can also take a sensory journey through the finest alcohol brands as we explore the flavorsome world of Whiskys, Bourbons, Champagne, Brandies and Cognac, Rum, Gin and Tequila.

Sidecar

best cocktails recipe sidecar - Luxe Digital

The Sidecar tastes like the essence of all things USA. A perfect harmony of sour, tart and sweet while being pleasurably boozy, it effortlessly steals the show.

Though the Sidecar is directly named after the commonly-used motorcar attachment, we don’t recommend mixing the two!

Ingredients

  • 60ml Cognac (or brandy)
  • 30ml Cointreau
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • 1 orange wheel or lemon twist and ice cubes to serve

Recipe

Shake the Cognac, Cointreau and lemon juice with ice in a cocktail shaker. Strain and serve in a classic cocktail glass. Garnish with orange or lemon.

Brandy Alexander

best cocktails recipe brandy alexander - Luxe Digital

Sweet, sumptuous, simple. The Brandy Alexander was created at the fin de siecle of the 20th Century at the Hotel Rector in NYC. A delicacy born of the glittering Gilded Age, the Brandy Alexander is the epitome of indulgence. 

If the Gilded Age was the delectable main course, then the Brandy Alexander was the figurative dessert. Which, fittingly, it’s often served as! Yum.

Ingredients

  • 80ml brandy
  • 50ml creme de Cacao
  • 50ml double cream
  • Nutmeg (optional)

Recipe

Shake all ingredients, plus ice, in a cocktail shaker. Garnish with grated nutmeg if desired.

Vesper

best cocktails recipe vesper - Luxe Digital

While it was Ian Fleming of the James Bond novels who invented the Vesper, the first person to actually drink it was the fictional character Bond himself! Try that for some confusingly layered reality. In Casino Royale, 007 gives us a detailed recipe for the Vesper, proving that if it all went Pete Tong in MI5, he’d have a handy back-up career as a mixologist.

What’s in the name anyway? The Vesper was named after Bond’s object of desire, Vesper Lynd, who ultimately turns out to be a double agent! We did not see that one coming.

Ingredients

  • 30ml gin
  • 10ml vodka
  • 5ml Lillet Blanc
  • Lemon garnish

Recipe

Shake all ingredients in a shaker with ice, strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with lemon.

Rum Old Fashioned

best cocktails recipe old fashioned - Luxe Digital

The Rum Old Fashioned is a dark twist on the classic combination of muddled sugar and bitters, traditionally topped up with whisky. Deep in flavour and citrus notes, the equally revered rum version would be quite at home quenching the thirst of a somewhat bourgeois pirate ship crew.

Ingredients

  • 50ml dark rum
  • 10ml white rum
  • 2.5ml sugar syrup
  • 1 dash of Angostura bitters

Recipe

Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into an ice-filled short glass. Garnish with orange.

Vieux Carré

best cocktails recipe vieux carre - Luxe Digital

A truly multicultural tipple, the Vieux Carré is a melting pot of influences. Hailing from the French Quarter of New Orleans in 1938 (the name literally means ‘Old Square’ in French) the drink has been compared to a Sweet Manhattan. Much like its birth town, the Vieux Carré is a colourful fusion of flavours, reflective of the rainbow culture of the Crescent City.

Ingredients

  • 30ml bourbon whisky
  • 30ml Cognac
  • 7.5ml benedictine liqueur
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
  • 1 dash Peychaud’s bitters

Recipe

Stir all ingredients together into a short, ice-filled glass. Garnish with lemon.

Pornstar Martini

best cocktails recipe pornstar martini - Luxe Digital

The Pornstar Martini is so-called due to its inclusion of passion fruit liqueur. Ironic, as ‘passion’ tends to be in short supply in the conventional workplace of any pornstar. Semantics notwithstanding, this zingy treat has truly become one of the most popular mixed drinks!

Ingredients

  • 30ml vanilla vodka 
  • 15ml Passoa
  • 1 ripe passionfruit
  • 1 squeeze lime juice
  • 1 tsp sugar syrup
  • 75ml Prosecco

Recipe

Add the passionfruit pulp and all other ingredients into a shaker with ice, shake well and strain into a martini glass. Top up with Prosecco.

Piña Colada

best cocktails recipe pina colada - Luxe Digital

The all-time favourite holiday cocktail was crafted in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 1954. Making the most of the island’s native fruit supply, bartender Ramon Marrero had the brainwave of mixing rum, coconut cream and pineapple to create this melt-in-the-mouth tropical delight.

Ingredients

  • 50ml light rum
  • 75ml pineapple juice
  • 25ml coconut cream

Recipe

Pour everything into a shaker with ice, shake vigorously and pour into a tall glass.

Bees Knees

best cocktails recipe bees knees - Luxe Digital

Like many of the best cocktails, the Bees Knees was created in the supposedly ‘dry’ period of Prohibition. The sticky sweet honeycomb with floral gin and citrus all swirl together to create the taste of candied honeysuckle.

Ingredients

  • 50ml gin
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp honey

Recipe

Pour all ingredients into a shaker. Shake well and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon slice.

Americano

best cocktails recipe americano - Luxe Digital

Ask for this in a coffee shop and you might be sorely disappointed (unless of course, you meant to order the espresso-based decidedly non-alcoholic caffeine kick). The Americano cocktail is certainly not recommended for first thing in the morning. First served in Caffe Campari in the 1860s by the man himself, Gaspare Campari, the cocktail is a pick-me-up in its own right.

Ingredients

  • 35ml Campari
  • 35ml sweet red vermouth

Recipe

Pour Campari and red vermouth into a glass. Serve with ice and garnish with orange.

Mai Tai

best cocktails recipe mai tai - Luxe Digital

For those with totally tiki taste buds, the heavily rum-based Mai Tai is the perfect accompaniment to a sunbed and a watercolour sunset. Bright and punchy, the Mai Tai is the essence of vibrant Polynesia.

Ingredients

  • 15ml white rum
  • 15ml dark rum
  • 15ml triple sec
  • 15ml grenadine
  • 1 tbsp almond syrup
  • Half a lime
  • 1 Maraschino cherry

Recipe

Shake all the ingredients in a shaker and pour over ice. Garnish with a cherry.

Cosmopolitan

best cocktails recipe cosmopolitan - Luxe Digital

Both a party in a glass and a perfect glass for parties, the Cosmopolitan is an all-round winner. The frothy bubble-pink bonanza is a favourite strong classic cocktail, and was apparently named after inventor Neal Murray of Minneapolis added a splash of cranberry juice to a Kamikaze and announced ‘How cosmopolitan!’. 

Ingredients

  • 45ml vodka
  • 15ml triple sec
  • 30ml cranberry juice
  • 10ml lime juice

Recipe

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a lime wedge.

Gin Gin Mule

best cocktails recipe gin gin mule - Luxe Digital

The Gin Gin Mule is a true hybrid: it’s described as a cross between the classic Mojito, and the Moscow Mule (the Mojito being rum-based, and the latter being predictably vodka-based). However, there’s no rum or vodka present in the Gin Gin Mule. 

As the name suggests, Audrey Saunders adapted the recipe to include this century’s all-around favourite spirit…  Drum roll… Gin!

Ingredients

  • 50ml gin
  • 15ml sugar syrup
  • 15ml lime juice
  • 25ml ginger beer
  • A handful of mint leaves

Recipe

Muddle mint leaves and syrup in the bottom of a shaker. Pour gin and some ice cubes in and shake, then add the ginger beer and stir (do not shake fizzy ginger beer!). Pour into a tall glass and garnish with mint.

Caipirinha

best cocktails recipe caipirinha - Luxe Digital

This is the taste of your next vacation. The sugar cane cachaca and bittersweet lime take over your taste buds, alluringly sweet yet somehow grown-up. The golden caster sugar evokes the feeling of golden sand crushing under your bare feet while you squint up at the beating sun. So… Barbados, anyone?

Ingredients

  • 50ml cachaca
  • Half a lime
  • 1 tbsp golden caster sugar
  • Crushed ice

Recipe

Juice the lime and muddle in a glass with sugar, add cachaca and top with crushed ice.

White Lady

best cocktails recipe white lady - Luxe Digital

The White Lady may seem innocent, but rest assured beneath that foamy, light exterior there’s a salacious sourness waiting to rock your world.

It’s such a popular cocktail, that in 1927 the inventor hid a full shaker of White Lady somewhere in the walls of the hotel during renovations! A rather kooky sentiment indeed.

Ingredients

  • 50ml gin
  • 25ml Cointreau
  • 20ml fresh lemon juice
  • 15ml sugar syrup
  • Egg white 

Recipe

Add all ingredients into a cocktail shaker and shake well. Add a few ice cubes and shake again. Strain into a (martini) glass.

Vodka Martini

best cocktails recipe vodka martini - Luxe Digital

Can anyone say ‘vodka martini’ without automatically adding ‘shaken, not stirred’? It’s instinctual! Of course, this was James Bond’s favourite cocktail, first mentioned in Diamonds Are Forever, but becoming the British spy’s most famous catchphrase.

Ingredients

  • 60ml vodka
  • 15ml vermouth

Recipe

Pour vermouth and vodka into a mixing glass and fill with ice cubes, stir well then strain into a martini glass.

Bamboo

best cocktails recipe bamboo - Luxe Digital

This drink is dangerously moreish, but thanks to its comparably lower alcohol content, you’re a little more free to indulge. Some say it’s the best known of all the sherry cocktails. The delightful mix of sherry, vermouth and bitters will have you reaching for the glass!

Ingredients

  • 40ml sherry
  • 20ml sweet vermouth
  • 10ml dry vermouth
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters

Recipe

Stir all ingredients together and strain into a Martini glass. Garnish with an orange twist.

Ramos Gin Fizz

best cocktails recipe ramos gin fizz - Luxe Digital

Quite possibly the most demanding cocktail, the Ramos Gin Fizz requires 12 minutes of shaking. A lily-white meringue of a cocktail with a cheeky tart edge, the Ramos Gin Fizz is as pretty as it is delicious.

Ingredients

  • 35ml gin
  • 1 tbsp triple sec
  • 2 tsp orange flower water
  • 25ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tsp sugar syrup
  • 25ml egg white
  • 25ml double cream
  • soda water, to serve

Recipe

Pour all the ingredients aside from the soda water into a cocktail shaker and shake well. Strain into a highball glass then top up with the soda.

Irish Coffee

best cocktails recipe irish coffee - Luxe Digital

Pioneered by Irish chef Joe Sheridan in the 1940s, the tipple is a popular after-dinner digestif. It’s no wonder this is such a popular cocktail; it literally combines many people’s two favourite things: coffee, and alcohol. Mediated with a little double cream, and the Irish coffee is a surefire winner.

Ingredients

  • 50ml Irish whiskey
  • 2 tbsp double cream
  • 150ml black coffee
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • Pinch of nutmeg (optional)

Recipe

Lightly whip the cream until slightly thickened, then set aside. Pour the coffee into a heatproof glass, then add the whiskey and sugar. Pour the cream over the back of a spoon so it settles on top of the coffee, then sprinkle nutmeg over the cream.

Old Cuban

best cocktails recipe old cuban - Luxe Digital

Sometimes a taste can literally transport you somewhere else. In this case, ‘somewhere else’ is the dusty streets of Havana. The Old Cuban awakes the darkness lurking within us all, with the smoky dark rum laced with sweet, sour and bitter.

Ingredients

  • 70ml dark rum
  • 40g caster sugar
  • Half a lime, juiced
  • A sprig of fresh mint
  • Dash of Angostura bitters
  • 50ml Prosecco

Recipe

Mix sugar with 25ml warm water to make a syrup. Then, add the syrup, lime juice and rum into a shaker. Add the mint, Angostura and some ice cubes and shake well. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and top up with Prosecco.

Blood and Sand

best cocktails recipe blood and sand - Luxe Digital

Another 20s classic (seriously, how did they get anything done?), Blood and Sand is named after Rudolph Valentino’s eponymous movie. The cherry liqueur represents the ‘blood’, while orange juice symbolises the ‘sand’. Of course, the Scotch gives the whole ensemble its more grown-up edge!

Ingredients

  • 20ml sweet vermouth
  • 20ml Scotch whiskey
  • 20ml blood orange juice
  • 20ml cherry liqueur

Recipe

Add all the ingredients into a cocktail shaker and shake well with ice. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with an orange slice.

Paloma

best cocktails recipe paloma - Luxe Digital

Lime juice, tequila and grapefruit all work together to make this fruity cocktail one of the most refreshing on our list. It’s dubbed ‘the working man’s Margarita’’; a minimalist cocktail which packs a maximum punch.

Ingredients

  • 50ml tequila
  • 10ml lime juice
  • 60ml pink grapefruit juice
  • Soda water

Recipe

Dip the rim of a highball glass in water, shake off any excess, and press into salt to coat. Add all the ingredients minus the soda water into a cocktail shaker with ice, and shake well. Strain into a chilled glass and top with soda water.

Tom Collins

best cocktails recipe tom collins - Luxe Digital

Perhaps one of the longest-standing cocktails to date, the Tom Collins was first mentioned in 1876 by ‘the father of American mixology’ Jerry Thomas. Nearly 150 years later and it’s still a mainstay on any self-respecting cocktail menu. It’s the perfect union of sophisticated botanicals, with just a hint of sour.

Ingredients

  • 50ml gin
  • 25ml lemon juice
  • 25ml sugar syrup
  • 125ml soda water

Recipe

‘Build’ the drink over a generous amount of ice and garnish with lemon.

Death in the Afternoon

best cocktails recipe death to the afternoon - Luxe Digital

This head-spinning cocktail is a lovechild of Ernest Hemingway’s two passions: writing, and drinking. Named after his novel, the cocktail is a potent combination of absinthe and Champagne. Hemingway’s instructions were such: 

‘Pour one jigger absinthe into a Champagne glass. Add iced Champagne until it attains the proper opalescent milkiness. Drink three to five of these slowly”. Yes, sir.

Ingredients

  • 10ml absinthe
  • 135ml Champagne

Recipe

Add absinthe to a Champagne flute, then top up with Champagne.

Passionfruit Martini Mocktail

best cocktails recipe passion fruit martini mocktail - Luxe Digital

The sharp, zingy flavours of this gorgeous alcohol-free cocktail cause quite the stir, leaving us considering full-time sobriety (well, unlikely. But it is delicious!).

Ingredients

  • 1 passionfruit
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • 1 egg white
  • 50ml alcohol-free spirit
  • 2 tsp sugar syrup
  • Sparkling grape juice

Recipe

Scoop the passionfruit flesh into a cocktail shaker and add all ingredients except the sparkling grape juice. Shake until frothy. Add a handful of ice and shake again vigorously. Double strain into chilled martini glasses.

Strawberry Fields Mocktail

best cocktails recipe strawberry fields - Luxe Digital

What came first? This berrylicious virgin mocktail or the classic Beatles tune? Seeing as the ‘60s icons weren’t exactly known for abstinence, we’re going to hazard a guess that they didn’t name the song after a non-alcoholic cocktail.

Ingredients

  • 30ml hibiscus syrup
  • 30ml strawberry syrup
  • Soda water

Recipe

Pour both syrups into a cocktail shaker and shake well with a few ice cubes. Serve in a tall glass and top with soda.

Virgin Paloma

best cocktails recipe virgin paloma - Luxe Digital

Love the classic Paloma but trying your hand at tee-totalling? This could be the best news you’ve had all day. Recreate the Paloma sans alcohol and voila, you might not tell the difference.

Ingredients

  • 1.5 limes, juiced
  • 30ml grapefruit juice
  • 30ml agave syrup
  • Pinch of sea salt

Recipe

Combine all ingredients into a cocktail shaker and shake well with ice. Strain over ice and serve in a tall glass.

Herb Garden Seltzer Mocktail

best cocktails recipe herb garden seltzer - Luxe Digital

Whether you’re a designated driver, eating (and drinking) for two, or just valiantly avoiding the sauce, the Herb Garden Seltzer oozes sophistication, with none of the naughty stuff.

Ingredients

  • Small handful each of mint, basil and rosemary
  • Half sugar
  • Half tsp salt
  • 100ml sparkling water
  • A quarter of a small cucumber, sliced into ribbons

Recipe

Place all ingredients except the soda water and cucumber into a jug and muddle lightly. Pour over the soda water and add cucumber ribbons. Infuse for 2 hours then serve in a chilled glass.

Southside

best cocktails recipe southside - Luxe Digital

Sometimes described as the ‘dignified cousin’ of the ‘party girl’ gin Mojito, the Southside can be topped up with soda water to make a Southside Fizz, or Champagne to make a Southside Royale.

Ingredients

  • 60ml gin
  • 8 mint leaves
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 15ml sugar syrup
  • Soda water or Champagne (optional)

Recipe

Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice and shake well. Strain and pour into a tall glass over more ice. Top up with soda or Champagne for the variations.

Last Word

best cocktails recipe last word - Luxe Digital

Another Prohibition favourite, a bartender stumbled across the recipe quite by chance in an old bar drinks manual back in 2004. Seemingly placid, when sipped the Last Word causes an unexpected explosion, alighting your taste buds with its potent punch.

Ingredients

  • 30ml dry gin
  • 20ml Green Chartreuse liqueur
  • 20ml maraschino liqueur
  • Half a lime, juiced
  • 10ml chilled water

Recipe

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled ‘Coupe’ glass.

Bramble

best cocktails recipe bramble - Luxe Digital

The Bramble encompasses the sweet flavour of blackberry bushes and the aroma of the quintessentially autumnal blackberry pie. Fans of blackberries and gin, this one’s for you!

Ingredients

  • 50ml gin
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • A dash of sugar syrup
  • 1 tsp of crème de mure

Recipe

Add gin, lemon juice and sugar syrup to a cocktail shaker and shake well with ice. Strain into a short glass over crushed ice. Drizzle the crème de mure so it ‘bleeds’ into the drink.

Pisco Sour

best cocktails recipe pisco sour - Luxe Digital

Although it’s the signature drink of Peru, the sweet grape flavours of Pisco and the indulgent creaminess of the egg white is more reminiscent of the debauchery of a Roman banquet.

Ingredients

  • 25ml Pisco
  • Half a lime, juiced
  • 25ml sugar syrup
  • Half an egg white
  • Dash of Angostura bitters

Recipe

Add all ingredients except the Angostura into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake well. Strain into a tall glass over more ice, then splash the bitters on top.

Sazerac

best cocktails recipe sazerac - Luxe Digital

Another New Orleans native, the Sazerac has received global recognition as one of the world’s favourite cocktails. Adaptations of the recipe often include absinthe, if you’re feeling brave.

Ingredients

  • 60ml rye whiskey
  • 1 sugar cube
  • 2 dashes Peychaud bitters
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
  • 1 tsp absinthe (optional)

Recipe

Muddle the sugar cube with a few drops of water in a whiskey glass. Add a few ice cubes, then build up with the whiskey then both the bitters and stir well.

Optional: If you’re adding absinthe, roll the spirit around a second glass to coat, then transfer the contents of the first glass to the second.

Dark ‘n’ Stormy

best cocktails recipe dark n stormy - Luxe Digital

The Dark ‘n’ Stormy is characterised by the fiery conjunction of ginger beer and dark rum. Rum purists will tell you that the only way to make an authentic Dark ‘n’ Stormy is with Gosling’s dark rum. Despite its name being reminiscent of the year-round British weather forecast, the drink actually originated in the sunny Caribbean. Well, it is made from rum. Go figure.

Ingredients

  • 50ml dark rum
  • Half a lime, juiced
  • 2 dashes of Angostura bitters
  • 100ml ginger beer

Recipe

Build the cocktail over ice in a highball glass. Garnish with a lime wedge.

Corpse Reviver

best cocktails recipe corpse reviver - Luxe Digital

Potentially a good choice after drinking a Death in the Afternoon, the first recipe appeared in the Gentleman’s Table Guide in 1871. Described as a ‘pick me up’ cocktail, this zingy firework is sure to blow out any cobwebs on any lethargic afternoon.

Ingredients

  • 25ml gin
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • 25ml Cointreau
  • 25ml sweet vermouth
  • A dash of absinthe

Recipe

Combine all ingredients into a shaker and shake well with ice. Strain into a tall glass and garnish with lemon.

Amaretto Sour

best cocktails recipe amaretto sour - Luxe Digital

A happy marriage between Italian liqueur and American mixology, the almond and sweet syrup fusion is like a very naughty cherry bakewell in a glass.

Ingredients

  • 50ml Amaretto
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • Half an egg white
  • 1 tsp cherry syrup
  • 1 cherry

Recipe

Combine all the ingredients in a blender with a few ice cubes. Pour into a short glass and garnish with a cherry.

Aviation

best cocktails recipe aviation - Luxe Digital

Super retro and super easy to put together. In the early 20th Century, bartender Hugo Ensslin created the Aviation at Hotel Wallick in NYC, it ‘took off’ (no pun intended), and the rest is history.

Ingredients

  • 25ml gin
  • A squeeze of lemon juice
  • 10ml maraschino liqueur
  • Dash of crème de Violette
  • Blueberries (optional)

Recipe

Shake up all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice (except the blueberries), and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with blueberries.

Clover Club

best cocktails recipe clover club - Luxe Digital

Named after a Philadelphia men’s club, the Clover Club is a brilliant fusion of Spring flavours. This cocktail conjures images of daisy chains, daffodils and Spring sunshine.

Ingredients

  • 50ml gin
  • 15ml dry vermouth
  • 5 fresh raspberries
  • 25ml raspberry cordial
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp egg white

Recipe

Put all ingredients in a cocktail shaker without ice. Shake well until frothy, then add ice and shake again. Strain and pour into a coupe glass over more ice.

French 75

best cocktails recipe french 75 - Luxe Digital

In France, the French 75 is simply known as Soixante Quinze. No, that’s not sixty-fifteen. It’s just how the French say seventy-five. Yep, it’s confusing. But you’ll have to take it up with them.

For lovers of gin and Champagne, this cocktail hits the spot.

Ingredients

  • 50ml gin
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • 10ml sugar syrup
  • 75ml Champagne

Recipe

Pour all ingredients except the Champagne into a cocktail shaker and fill up with ice. Shake well, then strain into a Champagne flute. Top up with Champagne, then swirl gently with a stirrer.

Penicillin

best cocktails recipe penicillin - Luxe Digital

The first name for penicillin was ‘mould juice’, thanks to its haphazard discovery by the less-than-housetrained scientist Alexander Fleming. Fortunately, the recipe for the Penicillin cocktail is absolutely no relation to its namesake. Far from it; the sour and spice combination is the perfect addition to an evening spent by the roaring fire in your favourite armchair.

Ingredients

  • 45ml Scotch whisky
  • 15ml ginger liqueur
  • 10ml single malt Scotch whisky
  • A squeeze of lemon juice
  • 20ml honey syrup

Recipe

Shake all the ingredients bar the single malt whisky in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Strain into an ice-filled glass, and top with the single malt.

Bloody Mary

best cocktails recipe bloody mary - Luxe Digital

Not for the faint hearted, nor the sweet-toothed. The Bloody Mary is about as hardcore as the murderous monarch herself! Tabasco, spice, and all things nice, the Bloody Mary goes where no cocktail has gone before.

Ingredients

  • 50ml vodka
  • 125ml tomato juice
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • 2 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 dashes of Tabasco
  • A pinch of celery salt
  • A pinch of black pepper
  • Celery stick (optional)

Recipe

Pour the vodka, tomato juice and lemon juice straight into a jug filled with ice. Add the remaining ingredients (apart from the celery) and stir until cold. Strain into a tall glass and garnish with a celery stick.

Aperol Spritz

best cocktails recipe aperol spritz - Luxe Digital

Hugely popular in Italy (and your Instagram feed), the Aperol spritz recipe is easily guesstimated from a three-two-one recipe of Prosecco, Aperol and soda. It’s commonly served as an aperitif in its country of origin. Well, when in Rome… 

Ingredients

  • 50ml Aperol
  • 75ml Prosecco
  • 25ml soda

Recipe

Add the Aperol, Prosecco and soda consecutively into a wine glass with ice.

Tommy’s Margarita

best cocktails recipe tommy's margarita - Luxe Digital

Tommy’s Margarita is so-called after the San Francisco Mexican restaurant where it was developed back in the 1990s. The bartender Julio Bermejo decided to double the agave syrup and omit the traditional Cointreau element. The result was fantastic, and it’s since become a mainstay.

Ingredients

  • 35ml tequila
  • 25ml agave syrup
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • Lime wedge (optional)

Recipe

Shake up all the ingredients bar the lime wedge in a cocktail shaker with ice, and strain into a Martini glass (dip the rim in water, then salt for an authentic serve). Garnish with lime wedge.

Gimlet

best cocktails recipe gimlet - Luxe Digital

Another cocktail which was helped to fame by a literary character, the Gimlet was favoured by protagonist Phillip Marlow of 1953 novel The Long Goodbye. He states “A real Gimlet is half gin and half Rose’s lime juice and nothing else.” The beautiful simplicity of lime and gin is just sharp enough to cause a wince.

Ingredients

  • 50ml gin
  • 50ml Rose’s lime juice
  • Slice of lime (optional)

Recipe

Add the gin and lime juice into a mixing jug with ice and stir until very cold. Strain the mixture into a chilled glass and garnish with lime.

Mojito

best cocktails recipe mojito - Luxe Digital

A Cuban classic, this is perhaps one of the best things to come from the island. The lime and mint combination makes it extremely refreshing for sweltering summer days. Plus, this minty fresh cocktail is the gift that keeps on giving; the white rum can be easily omitted for a guilt-free Virgin Mojito!

Ingredients

  • 60ml white rum
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 tsp granulated sugar
  • A small bunch of mint leaves 
  • Soda water

Recipe

Muddle the lime juice, mint leaves and sugar in a mixing jug. Pour into a tall glass with a handful of ice cubes, then add the rum and top up with soda water.

Moscow Mule

best cocktails recipe moscow mule - Luxe Digital

This cocktail is traditionally enjoyed in a copper mug which keeps the drink cold, but you’re forgiven for acquiescing to a short glass if necessary. The strong flavours here all fight for your attention, making for one loud, tasty refresher.

Ingredients

  • 50ml vodka 
  • 150ml ginger beer
  • A sprig of mint (optional)

Recipe

Pour vodka into a short glass filled with crushed ice. Top up with ginger beer. Garnish with mint.

Boulevardier

best cocktails recipe boulevardier - Luxe Digital

The Boulevardier is like that friend who always makes you feel warm on the inside. The rich, syrupy concoction is as necessary as background jazz on any cold winter’s night.

Ingredients

  • 35ml bourbon whisky
  • 30ml sweet red vermouth
  • 30ml Campari

Recipe

Shake all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and strain into a short glass.

Manhattan

best cocktails recipe manhattan - Luxe Digital

The Manhattan is one of five cocktails named after areas of the Big Apple: New York City. It gained popularity after it was served at a banquet hosted by the mother of Winston Churchill, Jennie Jerome for a presidential candidate. Expect any sweetness from a Manhattan and you’re setting yourself up to fail. It’s as sharp as a crisp green apple and bursting with bitter botanicals.

Ingredients

  • 50ml bourbon or rye whisky
  • 25ml red vermouth
  • 5ml cherry syrup
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Maraschino cherry (optional)

Recipe

Stir all ingredients in a mixing jug with ice, then strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a cherry.

Daiquiri

best cocktails recipe daiquiri - Luxe Digital

Many beach bars and cocktail bars alike will offer blended, fruity versions of this Cuban cocktail. However, cocktail aficionado’s insist the best way to enjoy it is the simpler traditional concoction of lime, white rum and sugar.

Ingredients

  • 50ml white rum
  • Half lime, juiced
  • 10ml sugar syrup

Recipe

Shake all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.

Negroni

best cocktails recipe negroni - Luxe Digital

Like 007’s signature Martini, a good Negroni is usually stirred, not shaken. Tart and sweet as cherry wine with the aroma of a Sicilian fruit market, the Negroni is pure, simple pleasure.

Ingredients

  • 25ml gin
  • 25ml Campari
  • 25ml sweet vermouth
  • Slice of orange (optional)

Recipe

Pour all the ingredients into a mixing jug with ice and stir until chilled. Strain into a glass and add a few ice cubes. Garnish with a slice of orange.

Margarita

best cocktails recipe margarita - Luxe Digital

Is there anything more quintessentially ‘on holiday’ than sipping an ice-cold Margarita? 

Ingredients

  • 50ml tequila
  • Half a lime, juiced
  • 1 tbsp triple sec
  • Salt and slice of lime to serve (optional)

Recipe

Coat the rim of a martini glass in salt, by wetting it with lime juice first then pressing into salt. Add the ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake well. Strain into prepared glass.

Espresso Martini

best cocktails recipe espresso martini - Luxe Digital

Probably the ultimate ‘pick me up’, the Espresso Martini will have you dancing the night away! The heady combination of strong espresso and vodka has made this cocktail a cemented favourite.

Ingredients

  • 50ml vodka
  • 25ml espresso
  • 25ml coffee liqueur (Kahlua is traditional)
  • 10ml sugar syrup
  • A coffee bean to serve (optional)

Recipe

Pour all ingredients into a shaker and shake until very cold. Strain into a Martini glass and garnish with a coffee bean.

Whiskey Sour

best cocktails recipe whisky sour - Luxe Digital

One of the classiest cocktails around, the Whisky Sour is sure to impress dinner guests and party-goers alike. History tells us that the Whiskey Sour was first consumed aboard ships when there was neither food nor water available for the toiling sailors. According to lore, the lemon juice was added by captains to ensure the sailors didn’t get too drunk.

Ingredients

  • 60ml whiskey
  • Half a lemon, juiced
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 egg white

Recipe

Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker and shake well to froth the egg white. Strain into a short glass.

Gin Fizz

best cocktails recipe gin fizz - Luxe Digital

The gin fizz is the queen of simple drinks. Most of us have these ingredients in our cupboards, so it’s a great cocktail to rustle up when you just fancy a quick refresher.

Ingredients

  • 50ml gin
  • 25ml lemon juice
  • 10ml sugar syrup
  • Sparkling water

Recipe

Combine gin, lemon juice and sugar syrup into a shaker with ice and shake well. Pour into a tall glass and top up with sparkling water.

Old Fashioned

old fashioned bourbon luxe digital

The ultimate Godfather of cocktails is said to have been invented in Louisville by James E. Pepper before he brought it to the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel bar. The whiskey really does the talking here, with the sugar and bitters providing a welcome layering.

Ingredients

  • 60ml Scotch whiskey or bourbon
  • 1 tsp granulated sugar
  • 2 dashes of Angostura bitters

Recipe

Mix the whiskey and sugar in a short glass until the sugar has dissolved. Fill your glass with ice then add the Angostura bitters, and top up with soda water if preferred.

Dry Martini

best cocktails recipe dry martini - Luxe Digital

Perhaps the most quintessentially ‘cocktail’ cocktail of all; the image of a classic Dry Martini standing proud in its delicate glass, topped off with the all-important green olive just screams sophistication. Is there really anything more cosmopolitan? Well, yes. There’s the Cosmopolitan, of course. But a good Dry Martini caters for those with that carefully acquired taste. Delicious.

Ingredients

  • 60ml dry gin
  • 15ml dry vermouth
  • Green olive (not optional)

Recipe

Simply shake up the gin and vermouth in a cocktail shaker, strain into a martini glass, and garnish with an olive.

Frequently asked questions

Which is the best cocktail?

It’s tough to determine the ‘best’ cocktail. There are plenty that deserve that accolade! However, for sweet tooths, try a Mai Tai or a Mojito. For those with a love for all things sour, a classic Margarita or Whiskey Sour should quench your thirst.

What cocktail gets you most drunk?

The Sazerac, Bees Knees and Mojitos are all known for their pretty high alcohol content. Any cocktail with mixed spirits is likely to get you buzzed a little quicker.

How do you make the most popular cocktails?

The number one tool in any mixologist’s toolkit is a cocktail shaker. Many popular cocktails are made using this Recipe- usually, the recipes state to combine the ingredients with ice in a shaker, then to pour the mixture over ice into your glass. Often, this will be topped up with soda water (or Champagne!).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *