Rediscover timeless classics: Journey through the world of forgotten cocktails that are making a comeback! cover image

Rediscovering Forgotten Classic Cocktails

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Cocktail Bible

Added: 7th September 2023

In recent years, the world of mixology has witnessed a resurgence of interest in classic cocktails. While many contemporary concoctions have dazzled our palates with innovative ingredients and artistic presentations, there's something undeniably captivating about revisiting the timeless classics. These drinks, often birthed during the golden age of cocktails, have an enduring appeal that transcends trends and fads. Join us on a journey as we rediscover some forgotten classic cocktails that are making a triumphant return to the forefront of the cocktail culture.

The Golden Age of Cocktails

The early 20th century is often referred to as the "Golden Age of Cocktails." This was a time when bartenders were revered craftsmen, and cocktail culture was at its zenith. Iconic watering holes like the Savoy Hotel in London and Harry's New York Bar in Paris became the epicenters of cocktail innovation. The drinks created during this period became the building blocks of modern mixology, and many of them still grace the menus of today's cocktail bars.

The Martinez: The Precursor to the Martini

Before the Martini became the quintessential cocktail of sophistication, there was the Martinez. This classic cocktail dates back to the 1860s and has several origin stories. One theory suggests that it was created by a bartender in Martinez, California, while another traces its roots to the Occidental Hotel in San Francisco.

The Martinez is a delightful blend of gin, sweet vermouth, maraschino liqueur, and orange bitters. It's served in a cocktail glass with a lemon twist or cherry garnish. This cocktail provides a slightly sweeter and more complex alternative to the Martini, making it a must-try for anyone exploring classic cocktails.

The Corpse Reviver #2: A Morning After Elixir

The Prohibition era gave rise to numerous creative cocktails, and the Corpse Reviver #2 is a standout example. This cocktail was designed not only for its delightful taste but also for its purported ability to revive a weary soul after a night of indulgence.

The Corpse Reviver #2 features equal parts gin, Cointreau, Lillet Blanc, and a dash of absinthe. The result is a zesty, herbaceous concoction with a hint of anise from the absinthe. Don't let the name fool you; this cocktail is more about stimulating the senses than raising the dead.

The Blood and Sand: A Cinematic Classic

Named after Rudolph Valentino's 1922 bullfighting movie, "Blood and Sand," this cocktail is a perfect blend of Scotch whisky, sweet vermouth, orange juice, and cherry brandy. Its complex flavors and vibrant color make it a visual and gustatory delight.

The Blood and Sand's balance of smokiness from the Scotch, sweetness from the vermouth and cherry brandy, and brightness from the orange juice create a harmonious drinking experience that stands the test of time.

The Sidecar: An Elegant Classic

The Sidecar is a timeless classic that exudes elegance and simplicity. Believed to have originated in Paris during World War I, this cocktail remains a beloved choice for those who appreciate a well-balanced blend of flavors.

To make a Sidecar, you'll need cognac, triple sec, and freshly squeezed lemon juice. The ingredients are shaken with ice and strained into a sugar-rimmed cocktail glass. The result is a perfectly balanced combination of sweetness, citrus, and the warm embrace of cognac.

The Aviation: A Blue-Skied Classic

The Aviation is a cocktail that fell into obscurity for decades but has experienced a renaissance in recent years. Created in the early 20th century, this drink features gin, maraschino liqueur, crème de violette, and lemon juice. The crème de violette gives it a distinct pale blue hue, reminiscent of the sky on a clear day.

The Aviation is a refreshing and floral cocktail with a subtle sweetness that's perfectly offset by the tartness of the lemon juice. It's a visually stunning drink that captures the essence of classic cocktails.

Bringing the Classics Back

The resurgence of classic cocktails isn't just nostalgia; it's a celebration of timeless craftsmanship and flavor. Bartenders and enthusiasts alike are diving deep into cocktail history, dusting off old recipes, and putting their own modern twists on them. These forgotten classics offer a glimpse into the sophistication and creativity of past eras while still holding their own in today's cocktail landscape.

Whether you're an aficionado of classic cocktails or a curious newcomer, exploring these forgotten gems is an enjoyable journey. So, the next time you find yourself at a cocktail bar or mixing drinks at home, consider ordering or crafting one of these classic cocktails. You may just discover a new favorite that stands the test of time, proving that some things truly do get better with age. Cheers to rediscovering forgotten classic cocktails!