old fashioned cocktail

Whether you ply the trade or not, everyone is a bartender on occasion. And every home bartender or party-hosting drinks maker can benefit from knowing some basic, classic cocktail recipes. Treating your guests to a well-made, simple cocktail is a beautiful thing. And knowing the basics will help you to form the foundation for more elaborate drinks. So if you’re planning to tend bar at your next house party, or just want to make some drinks at home, take note: here are nine must-have recipes for any bartender’s repertoire.

OLD FASHIONED – The original cocktail

2 oz bourbon or rye whiskey
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 sugar cube
A few dashes of water

Put the water, the sugar cube, and the bitters into a glass. Smush (muddle in bar speak) them together, then add the whiskey and some ice. Add an orange slice and a cocktail cherry.

MANHATTAN – A perfect nightcap

2 oz rye whiskey
1 oz sweet vermouth
2 dashes Angostura Bitters

Mix the ingredients with ice and stir well, then strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a good quality cherry.

MARTINI – The classic classy drink

3 oz gin
1 oz dry vermouth

Stir gin and vermouth with plenty of ice until very cold. Then strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with your choice or lemon peel or olives. Feel free to play with the proportions. If you like your martini drier, try doing a 4:1 or even a 6:1 ratio of gin to vermouth.

NEGRONI – A bittersweet Italian staple

1 oz gin
1 oz sweet vermouth
1 oz Campari

Add all ingredients to a mixing glass. Add ice, stir well and strain over a couple large ice cubes. Garnish with an orange peel.

SAZERAC – The official New Orleans cocktail

2 oz rye (or cognac)
1 barspoon absinthe
1 sugar cube
2 dashes of Peychaud’s bitters

Rinse a chilled glass with the absinthe, and discard the excess. In a mixing glass, crush sugar with bitters, add rye and stir well with ice. Strain into the absinthe-rinsed glass, express lemon oils over drink and drop in the lemon peel.

DAIQUIRI – A perfect showcase for rum

2 oz white rum
1 oz lime juice
.5 oz simple syrup

Shake all ingredients with ice, and strain into a coupe.

MARGARITA – Mexico’s finest export

1 oz blanco tequila
1 oz Cointreau
.75 oz fresh lime juice

Shake ingredients with ice, then strain over fresh ice into a rocks glass. Garnish with a lime.

GIMLET – The original gin and juice

2 oz gin
.75 oz fresh lime juice
.5 oz simple syrup

The original recipe actually calls for Rose’s Lime Juice, but we like the fresh version better. Shake your ingredients with ice, and strain into a coupe. Garnish with a lime wheel.

SIDECAR – A delicious product of WWI

1.5 oz parts cognac
.75 oz Cointreauc
.75 oz fresh lemon juice

Rim a chilled cocktail glass with lemon juice and dip in sugar. Then shake all ingredients with ice and strain into that cocktail glass.

Obtain these ingredients and learn to make these drinks, and you’ll have some formidable bartending skills under your belt. Plus, you’ll have a lot of booze to begin riffing on these classics, making others and concocting your own original recipes.

Guest author Mark Masterson is from IceMachinesPlus.com. With more than 10 years experience in the restaurant and bar industry, Mark is focused on providing quality information and advice to managers and contractors about the best practices on choosing the right type of ice machine.

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