When a bartended asks “what are you drinking,” have you ever wanted a more creative answer than beer? Creative folks behind the bar have come up with some new choices that might just be your new drink. From things to do with tequila instead of a margarita to creative things to do with vodka or gin, give the following cocktails a try for your new year.
According to Vanity Fair, the season for new cocktails is upon us, and top restauranteur Mario Batali is introducing new drinks inspired by the Oscars. Batali is launching the cocktails at his nee restaurant, La Sirena at the Maritime Hotel. Head bartender Meaghan Montagano has been working hard to add something new to the bar repertoire.
The two standout drinks are the In Vacanza and the Coppa di Sicilia. Both are opulent and over the top, with the first being crisp, and the second spicy. In Vacanza literally means on vacation, and it is meant to be a holiday escape from the New York winter. If you can’t literally get away, a brief respite in a glass might do the trick.
by Meaghan Montagano
1¾ oz Absolut Elyx
1 oz El Dorado three-year-old rum
¾ oz Velvet Falernum
¾ oz Amontillado Sherry
½ oz lemon juice
½ oz caramelized pineapple purée
3 dashes Bittermens Tiki Bitters
3 dashes Bittermens Mole Bitters
Combine all ingredients in shaker tin, add a generous scoop of ice, and shake vigorously. Strain over ice into tropical glassware and garnish with edible nasturtium flowers and pineapple leaves.
The Coppa is a nod to the Pimms Cup, with a spicy, gingery kick that melds with Batali’s food.
Coppa di Sicilia
by Meaghan Montagano
2 os Averna Amaro
1 oz cucumber syrup (method below)
¾ oz freshly juiced ginger root
½ os lime juice
Ginger Beer to top
Place Averna, cucumber syrup, juiced ginger, lime juice, and a generous scoop of ice into a shaker tin and shake vigorously. Pour Q Ginger Beer into the tin, then strain into a highball glass. Garnish with a cucumber star and candied ginger.
Cucumber syrup: Juice four cucumbers and measure the juice yielded. Combine cucumber juice with the same amount of white sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for three minutes. Allow to cool before using.
Cosmopolitan is telling readers that there are cocktails out there that they haven’t tried, but should. First, for those who like their drinks a bit sweet, the Red Velvet Shortcake, which is served in a tall glass with a straw, and garnished with a whole strawberry.
Red Velvet Shortcake
1 1/2 ounce Red Velvet Zing Vodka
2 ounces of cream soda
Splash of lemon juice
Muddle one strawberry in a cocktail shaker, and add all ingredients except the cream soda. Shake and strain into glass with ice and top with cream soda. Garnish with a strawberry.
And for the whisky crowd, the Whisky Smash.
2 ounces Dewars White Label Blended Scotch Whisky
1 tsp. sugar
2 lemon wedges
3 mint sprigs
Muddle the lemon, mint leaves and sugar in the bottom of a cocktail shaker. Add whisky. Shake and strain into a glass with ice and top with seltzer.
NDTV reports that there are many tequila cocktails that are beyond margaritas, and that all tequilas are not created equal. The drink Gallagher’s Smash is beyond the normal citrus based tequila drink, but it’s equally refreshing.
When we think of fruit and tequila, lemons and limes come to mind. But there are many other varieties that pair perfectly with the spirit.
Yield: one drink
2 ounces blanco tequila
1 ounce lime juice
1/2 ounce simple syrup
5 cubes watermelon
3 sage leaves
Directions: Combine ingredients in mixing glass; muddle. Add ice, then shake. Double strain over fresh ice and garnish with a watermelon cube and a sage leaf.
And perhaps a twist on the song by Prince, Raspberry Beret, adds some tart and sweet to tequila.
Gibson’s Raspberry Beret is a cinch for a party. The recipe below serves one, but it’s easy to turn it into a big batch. Just make the raspberry-mint lemonade in advance (purée lemonade, raspberries and mint leaves, then strain), and add the booze once it’s party time.
Yield: 1 drink
2 ounces blanco tequila
3 ounces lemonade
5 to 6 mint leaves
Combine ingredients in mixing glass; gently muddle. Add ice, then shake. Double strain over fresh ice. Garnish with a raspberry and a sprig of fresh mint.
So mix up a pitcher or two of these drinks for you next party, and share what you think in the comments section below.
Are you looking to add some new cocktails to your repertoire?
[Photo by Pablo Blazquez Dominguez/Getty Images]