- Food and Cooking
Cocktails For Beginners - Easy Cocktail Recipes
Cocktails For Beginners
Time for a party? Not sure what drinks to serve your guests?
Look no further, here I'll give you some cocktails for beginners, easy cocktail recipes that anyone can master.
I'll also pick cocktails which use ingredients most people are likely to have in the home, nothing too obscure.
I have been mixing cocktails for 35 years, so have thousands in my head to choose from, but here I'll start with the basics.
Also, every cocktail listed below can be poured into a glass and simply stirred. Managing a cocktail shaker is something you can practice with time.
Easy Cocktail Recipes
One old classic, which takes its name from the fuzzy Peach, and navel oranges, is
2 parts vodka,
1 part peach schnapps
served in a tall glass over ice
In recent years, this recipe has been changed slightly, to become;
SEX ON THE BEACH
The same recipe as above, with added grenadine, a sweet red syrup which turns the whole concoction pink-ish.
The original of this drink was developed in the Caribbean, where they used white rum mixed with fresh Coconut milk and fresh pineapple juice. Delicious!
In bars they normally have a creamy coconut liqueur and the recipe is as follows;
2 parts white rum
1 part coconut cream liqueur
Served over plenty of ice
If you are making this at home, and can't get this creamy coconut liqueur, you can improvise by mixing Malibu, or white coconut rum, with pineapple juice, and then add a few drops of fresh cream (not too much or it will curdle). Piña colada can be mixed in the glass, or pitcher, but benefits from a shaker or blender as it will appear frothy and more appetising.
A very simple and delicious aperitif is the
2 parts Bourbon
1 part red vermouth
As simple as that! Served in a martini glass, room temperature or mixed first over ice and then strained into a martini glass. Extremely simple and extremely tasty.
Frequently ordered in recent years, thanks to the girls of ' Sex and the City' is the delicious
2 parts vodka
1 part triple sec (or cointreau)
a little lime juice
Mix in a tall glass or a pitcher with ice, but strain and
Serve in a martini glass, just as it is, or with a slice of lime or a cherry
is another old favourite, but in the past the first thing to go in the champagne glass was a sugar cube, with a few drops of Angostura bitters. Nowadays most people prefer a little grenadine.
2 parts brandy or cognac
1 part triple sec
a sugar cube, this goes in first and the other ingredients poured
over the top. If using grenadine this is added last, slowly and just a
few drops, which will drop to the bottom of the glass. Add a cherry
and enjoy. (You can substitute these spirits for others of your
choosing, but these are the classics, as brandy has always been a
good partner for champagne, both coming from the grape, and triple
sec with its orangey fruitiness, is a wonderful partner.
LONG ISLAND ICED TEA
A very popular choice.It's very strong, but if made right, tastes like regular iced tea. Served in a tall glass over ice, with a wedge of lemon on the side.
Equal parts of each spirit:
A little lime juice
Home-made lemonade, or old-fashioned lemonade, (or Lemon Fanta with added fresh lemon juice as it's not very lemony)
Add just a small splash of Coke, to give it the colour of tea.
Be careful! Tastes good, very refreshing, but potent!
Some more tried and tested classics which also can be classed as cocktails for beginners, as they are easy recipes:
2 parts Scotch whiskey
1 part Martini Bianco or sweet vermouth
7up, Sprite, or clear lemonade
Mixed and served in a tall glass over ice
In a large tall glass with ice, add
A generous measure of tequila
mix together, then add
Grenadine, added last and poured slowly, so it sinks to the bottom but starts to rise up again, creating the 'sunrise' effect.
2 parts Gin
1 part cherry brandy
Mix over ice to chill, then pour into martini glass. Add a cherry.
2 parts vodka
1 part pernod
1 part blackcurrant cordial
Home-made lemonade, or old-fashioned ' cloudy' lemonade.
Mixed and served in a tall glass over ice
Another cocktail becoming very popular in bars nowadays is the Cuban cocktail Mojito. This is slightly more complicated to make, not really one of the cocktails for beginners, or easy cocktail recipes, but I'm adding it here as it's popular, and it's really not that difficult.
You need just a good tasty white or golden rum, i.e.Havana Club.
Fresh limes, mint leaves, sugar, and soda water.
Very easy to make as long as you have a pestle, the baton-shaped 'pounder' part of mortar and pestle, the gadget found in some kitchens. If you don't have this, again you have to improvise, using the rounded handle of a kitchen implement or tool, which will fit in the glass.
You need to pound the mint leaves, and the pieces of lime, to extract all the flavour, and line the glass with it. So it doesn't do to pound your ingredients on a board, as you lose half the flavour.
Place 4 or 5 minute leaves in your glass, and pound them to extract some juice, but leaving a few pieces of leaf.
Take half a medium-sized lime, cut this into about six wedges, add them to the glass and press and squeeze with your pestle, to extract juices, and until the peel starts to break up, as you need some of the zest from the peel too.
Cubans like their drinks very sweet, so they would add about 3 teaspoons of sugar next, but you add enough to suit your tastes. I would suggest about one & a half teaspoons, unless you're a really sweet tooth. Mix the sugar in well.
Next pour over all this, a generous measure of rum.
Top up with a little soda water, stir well, drop a small sprig of mint on the surface, and a wedge of lime on the side of the glass. Enjoy!
I hope you enjoy making your cocktails as much as I do. They're a lot of fun to make, and a lot more fun to enjoy!
Once you've mastered your first cocktails, you can move on to some of the slightly more complicated mixes, still a lot of fun to do. Another article on cocktails which may interest you Cocktails - How To Mix Your Favourite Cocktails