New Year’s Eve is approaching, and if you are looking for a last-minute party idea, serving up a vintage cocktail is a fun, easy way to channel your inner Don — or Betty — Draper and inject a little Mad Men glamour into your evening. After all, if there’s one thing that Mad Men allows its viewers to glimpse, it’s a world where glamour — and alcohol — certainly ruled.
1. Kokomo (1959) – For something sweet and refreshing, fill a cocktail shaker halfway with ice. Add vodka, amaretto, creme de cacao, cream of coconut and heavy cream. Shake well, then strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with coconut for extra flare.
2. Sage Advice (1969) – This vintage cocktail relies on its strong herb scent for its unique flavor. For the syrup, combine 1 cup brewed black tea and 3 tablespoons of honey in a small saucepan. Reduce over medium-low heat until syrupy. For the cocktail, For the cocktail, add 1/2 ounce tea syrup, 2 sage leaves, 2 dashes of Peychaud’s bitters and 3/4 ounce orange juice in a cocktail shaker. Muddle the sage leaves with the handle of a wooden spoon. Add 1 1/2 ounces of rye, 1/2 ounce of Averna bitters, then fill the cocktail shaker three-quarters of the way with ice before shaking. Strain the drink into a martini glass, then garnish with another sage leaf.
3. Mama’s Little Helper (1979) – According to the Food Network, this particular vintage cocktail is “a fizzy, cucumber-flavored drink [that] tastes like the equivalent of a Jell-o mold dessert — but in a good way.” To begin, slice a piece of cucumber and reserve it. Peel the remaining cucumber, then halve and seed it before blending it into a puree. Strain through a fine mesh sieve. Fill a highball glass three-quarters of the way with ice, add 2 ounces of the cucumber puree, 1 1/4 ounces of gin, a splash of lime juice, and a splash of simple syrup. Fill the remainder of the glass with seltzer, stir, and garnish with the reserved cucumber slice.
4. Wally World (1989) – The year of this cocktail may call to mind more shoulder pads and big hair than vintage 1950s glamour, but it’s definitely pretty in pink and its sweet, strawberry taste is a winner, and it’s simple to make. Fill a highball glass three-quarters of the way with ice. Add 1 1/2 ounces of strawberry vodka, then fill the glass almost to the top with chilled lemon-lime soda. Add 1/2 ounce of cranberry juice cocktail, stir, and garnish with a strawberry.
5. Blue Hawaiian – This is a cocktail recipe actually used on Mad Men, and it’s bright blue look, true vintage style, and sweet, fruity taste are certain to be a hit. Combine one ounce of blue curaçao, one ounce cream of coconut, two ounces of pineapple juice, and one cup of ice into blender and blend. Garnish with a cherry and a slice of pineapple.
6. Classic Martini – As its own name implies, this classic drink is a must-have at a vintage cocktail party. Rinse martini glass in dry vermouth, then pour it out. Shake 2 1/2 ounces of gin with ice until chilled, then pour into glass. Add three green olives. For a dirty martini, follow the directions for a classic martini, but add 1/2 ounce of olive juice to the martini glass, and use olives stuffed with blue cheese, if desired.
These drinks could certainly add some vintage fun and glamour into your New Year party, although you may need to explain the difference between drinking like Mad Men from drinking like actual mad men to some of your guests.
Read about one man who took his love for vintage drinks too far, consuming over $100,000 of his landlord’s Prohibition era whiskey here.
[Image via Huffington Post]