Pictures of home-made cocktails have taken over social media feeds as majority of us have nothing better to do during this quarantine. However, there is a common theme in almost all the pictures: B-A-S-I-C! Yes, I said it! Rose Kennedys are beyond played out, so let me help step your cocktail game up. I have been bartending for over ten years, so trust me, I know what I am talking about. These drinks not only taste great and are easy to make, but they are very Instagram worthy as well.
Tips for crafting the perfect cocktail:
- To pour a perfect ounce, count to 4 while pouring. 1 second is equal to ¼ ounce.
- More liquor DOES NOT mean a better tasting cocktail, hence why there are recipes.
- If worse comes to worse, chug whatever mistake you made and start over.
Bar tools needed:
- Mixing tin
- Pour spouts or a Jigger
Now that we got that out of the way, let us get into the fun stuff.
This fancy looking cocktail is the perfect social distancing companion. Do not let the pretty pink color fool you, this bad boy packs a punch! I am not usually a fan of gin, but the rosé and elderflower kind of mask that gin taste. I personally prefer to use Hendrick’s gin when making cocktails due to its smoothness, but feel free to use any gin your heart desires. Want to be really fancy? Freeze some rose petals in ice as a garnish.
3 oz. Gin
1 oz. Elderflower liquor (like St. Germaine)
1 oz. Lime juice
Bottle of Rosé Champagne.
- Add gin, elderflower liquor and lime juice to mixing tin with ice and shake for at least 10 seconds.
- Strain into a cocktail glass with fresh ice (or the Rose ice cubes).
- Top with Sparkling Rosé
This next cocktail is one of my favorites! It was created for the bar I work at as a seasonal drink, but I make it year-round and it has easily become the go-to cocktail for a lot of my friends. It may be difficult to find White Cranberry juice, so feel free to use pink cranberry juice.
1.5 oz. Vodka (I prefer Reyka vodka for this one, but use whatever brand you like)
.5 oz. St. Germaine Elderflower Liquor
.5 oz. Cointreau or Triple Sec
1 oz. White or Pink Cranberry Juice
1 oz. Lime Simple Syrup (Equal parts lime juice and simple syrup)
- Combine all ingredients in a tin filled with ice.
- Shake for at least 10 seconds.
- Pour into a chilled martini glass and garnish with either an edible flower or frozen cranberries.
This light and refreshing cocktail combines Ketel One Cucumber Mint vodka with St. Germaine and fresh cucumbers to create one tasty libation. The best part is that this cocktail comes in a just under 100 calories, so it is perfect for all you health nuts!
1.5 oz. Ketel One Cucumber Mint Botanicals vodka
.5 oz. St. Germaine
1 oz. of Sour Mix
4 Slices of seedless cucumber.
- Put 3 slices of cucumber in the bottom of a mixing tin and combine all ingredients except for club soda.
- Shake and strain into a wine glass over fresh Ice.
- Top with club soda and garnish with a cucumber slice.
Vanilla Peach Bellini Martini
Perfect for Brunch or as a little afternoon delight, this variation of the popular Peach Bellini adds some vanilla and peach vodka to the mix and the result is this perfectly balanced cocktail!
1 oz. Vanilla Vodka
1 oz. Peach Vodka
.5 oz Peach Nectar
- Combine vodkas and nectar in a mixing tin with ice.
- Shake for at least 20 seconds.
- Strain into a chilled martini glass and top with champagne.
- Garnish with a frozen, sliced peach.
Smokey Prickly Pear Margarita
This delicious concoction is one for the senses. The secret to this cocktail is Mezcal. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Mezcal for the smokey flavor it gives to any cocktail. What is Mezcal you ask? Well, while many people put tequila and mezcal into the same category, there is only one common trait they share-Agave. Tequila can be made using any kind of Agave and made anywhere in Mexico; however, Mezcal can only be made from 3 distinct Agave plants and must be made in one of two regions within Mexico. If you have never tried Mezcal, then you are definitely missing out!
2 oz. Mezcal (I really like using Joven Mezcal, but whatever you can find is perfect.)
.75 oz. Prickly Pear Syrup (You can usually find this in liquor or grocery stores)
.75 Lime Simple Syrup.
- Combine all ingredients in a tin with ice.
- Shake for as long as your little heart desires.
- Salt the rim of a cocktail glass and fill with fresh ice.
- Strain into glass and garnish with a lime wedge.
If none of the cocktails above tickle your fancy, I have one last tip for you. Put together a list of what spirits, wines, mixers and any food items you currently have at home and head over to MakeMeACocktail.com (this website is the best thing to happen to quarantine since Tiger King!!). Input your list into the site and then click the “magic button” and suddenly you are provided with 3500+ options of cocktails you can make with the items you have!
Now, go and try to be that bartender you always wanted to be! Quarantine will suck A LOT less once the liquor starts flowing. Cheers Queers!