An American is said to have created this tropical drink. Jennings Cox was working at an iron mine in Santiago, Cuba. One night he was hosting guests and ran out of gin. He bought rum, a cheaper alcohol and proceeded to make a tasty punch by mixing the rum with lemons, sugar, mineral water, and ice. His guests wanted to know the cocktail’s name and, on the spot, he named it for the nearby beach, Daiquiri.
The origins of this summer sip are a little fuzzy. Here’s why: three different places served up three versions of the drink from the 1890’s all the way through Prohibition. Mint, citrus and sugar helped balance the strong gin. The Southside Sportsmen’s Club in Long Island, New York made the cocktail first; then mobster bootleggers on the Southside of Chicago made it too; followed by New York City’s 21 Club, a legendary Speakeasy. Add soda to make it a fizz or mix it with champagne for a Southside Royale.
This drink from Prohibition times was once dubbed a “secret handshake” between patrons and bartenders. Created by New York bartender Hugo Ensslin, this lavender-colored martini-alternative was both mysterious and glamourous. For a while, Crème de Violet was hard for mixologists to find. While the drink faded off of some cocktail menus over the years, it never really went away.
The Bloody Mary is a classic brunch drink because it’s known as a popular “hair of the dog” drink – but where did that term even come from?
The term is actually short for “hair of the dog that bit you” and initially referred to an old Scottish belief that if bit by a rabid dog, a few hairs from said dog applied to the wound would prevent “evil consequences.” As is Scottish tradition, it was then applied to alcohol consumption metaphorically – some of “the drink” the morning after will cure what ails you from the previous night of hard partying.
While we can’t say for sure whether it actually works, it’s definitely a tasty way to keep the party going.
The mimosa, the classic brunch drink, was said to be invented in 1925 in France at the Hotel Ritz Paris. While the origins of the name are unclear, it is very likely named after the yellow acacia flowers of the same name.
A mimosa is actually defined as one part champagne and one part orange juice. Double the amount of champagne, and it’s technically a cocktail known as a Buck’s Fizz – a drink purportedly invented as an excuse to begin drinking early.
Miners in 1890 Montana looked forward to this this booze and beer combination at the end of their shift. Irish bartenders affectionately called it the “Sean O’Farrell.” Also known as a Boilermaker – a nod to the favorite happy hour drink of steam-engine workers – this beverage is a fitting end to the workday. Gulp the shot first to take the edge off and then sip the beer to relax.
Classic in every sense of the word, this is the drink that’s synonymous with “cocktail.” While variations and origins are often fiercely disputed, the base ingredients are always the same: whiskey (bourbon or rye), sugar, bitters, ice.
This drink is so ingrained in American history that cranky old timers displeased with newer, sexier cocktails were reminiscing about them in letters to the New York Times – in the 1930s.
No cocktail gets as little respect as perhaps the Whiskey Sour. Bastardized into an artificial, high-fructose corn syrup-laden mess best reserved for wedding bars and Vegas card tables, the sour gets no love for its impact on cocktail history.
The whiskey sour is the original sour, an exceedingly simple cocktail that was the forefather of most “sour” drinks you see today. The whiskey sour paved the way for the daiquiri, the margarita, the rickey – anything that actually had citrus juice in the original recipe.
Unfortunately, those have all been misappropriated into sugary, slushy drinks as well. A damn shame, if you ask us.
Unlike the Mai Tai, the Singapore Sling has geniune origins in its namesake. The cocktail was born at the Raffles Hotel in Singapore sometime before 1915, and quickly grew to be their signature drink.
While the original recipe was thought to be lost, a committee of former Raffles employees got together and formulated their next best guess, based on the flavors of days past. Our Sling employs that new, improved “modified” recipe, using uncommon ingredients like gin, benedictine (an herbal liqueur made by monks), and Cherry Heering (a cherry brandy) to create an endlessly refreshing cocktail.
The Mai Tai is the quintessential tiki drink, but its roots in Polynesian culture are…questionable at best. The potent beverage is traditionally made with Caribbean rum, French almond syrup, and an orange liqueur with Caribbean and Portuguese origins.
It was purportedly invented by either Donn Beach (of Don the Beachcomber) or Victor Bergeron (of Trader Vic’s) – a Texan and a San Franciscan, respectively, who created two separate chains of restaurants, each a bizarre medley of islander cultures and customs.