Happy New Year gents, it’s Max from The Young Gentleman’s Guide here! So, this post will really only be helpful for those who are 21 or older, so to any of you who might still be in high school, please forgive me and don’t say I didn’t warn you. And to some older gents reading this, I thought this would be helpful if people start ordering drinks at a bar or with dinner at a restaurant. So today, I’ve compiled a list of some common and/or popular cocktails, along with a couple of my favorites, some info and history about the drink in general, what they’re made of, and possibly some popular dishes that they’re served with (though I don’t have much knowledge in that last area yet). Hopefully this will help you older gents figure out what to order with your next meal or on your next night out. With that in mind, let’s start the list! Almost all my info on the cocktail ingredients and recipes are from liquor.com, and if you’d like more info about other drinks I didn’t mention, I’ll leave a link. Also, there will be some drinks on this list that I haven’t personally tried, so my info on some of these drinks may be a bit limited. My word is not law.
1. Gin & Tonic
Ingredients: 2 oz of gin, 3-4 oz of tonic water, 1-3 lime wedges (proportions may vary based on taste)
I wanted to start with probably the simplest cocktail on this list to make. First made in the 1700s, this drink was made after the discovery of quinine. Quinine was used as a cure for malaria at a time when British soldiers began invading and colonizing India and Africa. The quinine was infused with tonic water for the soldiers to drink, but most soldiers found it unbearably bitter. In order to remedy this, soldiers started mixing the tonic with certain rations they had on hand, that being gin, limes, and sugar, and thus, the gin and tonic was born! Nowadays, since the threat of malaria is significantly lower now than it was then, the gin and tonic makes for a very refreshing drink for just about any social occasion. My parents even have a tradition of making a gin and tonic for themselves every Friday night after a long day at work (their choice of ingredients is Tanquerey gin and Schweppes tonic water). So if you’re looking for a refreshing drink that’s easy to make, and works with just about any occasion, the gin and tonic may be your best option!
2. Moscow Mule
Ingredients: 2 oz of vodka, 3 oz of ginger beer, juice of half a lime, garnish with lime slice or wedge
Born in the 1950s, the heydey of vodka, the Moscow Mule is one of the quintessential vodka-based cocktails, as well as one of my personal favorites. Though traditionally served in a copper mug, as shown above, it can also be served in a highball glass. Just as refreshing as the gin and tonic, it is also applies very well to many different social situations. Also, there is a variation on this drink: the Kentucky Mule, which replaces the vodka with bourbon. Whatever you preferences, whatever the occasion, this drink is the perfect flavorful refresher!
3. Cuba Libre
Ingredients: 1 oz of rum (usually Bacardi Gold, as shown above), 3 oz of Coca-Cola, garnish with a lime wedge
Another very simple cocktail to make, the Cuba Libre, or Rum and Coke, is a refreshing delight enjoyed by many. There’s not much else to say. If you like soda and would like a bit more of a kick from your Coke, give it a try!
Ingredients: 2 oz orange juice, sparkling wine or champagne
Believed to have been invented in 1925 at the Hotel Ritz Paris, the mimosa is a staple of Sunday brunch. It’s pretty much impossible to see someone (who’s at least 21) having brunch without a mimosa in hand. Sure, it’s often associated with twenty-something white women, but the idea that a certain gender should only be able to enjoy certain drinks is pure nonsense. If you have a drink and you enjoy it, enjoy it! No one should be able to stop you!
Ingredients: 1 1/2 oz of tequila, 3/4 oz of lime juice, 1 oz Cointreau (orange-flavored liqueur), kosher salt (optional)
Served at many a Mexican restaurant and on every Cinco de Mayo, the margarita is a famous and universally loved cocktail that can actually be very easy to make. Sure, the ingredients listed above make the cocktail more authentic, but if you’re hosting a party and can’t find all the ingredients in time, you can just find some margarita mix at any supermarket or liquor store. Sure it won’t be as authentic and have a bit too much sugar, but it will work just as well!
Ingredients: 1 1/2 oz of citrus vodka, 1 oz of Cointreau, 1/2 of lime juice, dash of cranberry juice, garnish with lemon twist
Invented in Manhattan in 1975, the cosmopolitan is more commonly associated with more high-end affairs (hence the name of the drink), but nonetheless is a wonderful social cocktail to be enjoyed by all. As a guy who loves more sweet and fruity drinks, this is something that I will definitely be interested in trying eventually!
Ingredients: 2 1/2 oz. of gin (or vodka depending on your tastes), 1/2 of dry vermouth, dash of orange bitters, garnish with green olives (usually three (3) on a toothpick)
We all know 007’s drink of choice. “Vodka martini. Shaken, not stirred.” Though, similar to the cosmopolitan, this is also more associated with high-end affairs. But, maybe you have such an affair coming up, and you’ll want to get yourself a drink. If so, this drink will be perfect for just about any social occasion. Plus it may add a little bit of appeal if you’re trying to impress that certain lady
So that’s just seven (7) of the most popular and universally enjoyed cocktails that you can enjoy for whatever party social occasion you have coming up. There are dozens more that I didn’t list here, so if you’re interested, check out liquor.com! They have plenty of other recipes for cocktails that I didn’t mention here, and I’m sure they have just the drink you’re looking for. In any case, I hope you enjoyed reading today’s post. Please be sure to share the post, follow the blog, and follow The Young Gentleman’s Guideon Facebook and Instagram. And on that note, this is Max from The Young Gentleman’s Guide, and I’ll see you next time, and of course, drink responsibly!