Cocktail Recipes

HoursMorning/Brunch
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Screwdriver

Vodka , Classics

The Screwdriver is an essential part of the mixological toolkit.

Classic Bloody Mary

Vodka , Classics

While the origin of this popular brunch cocktail is debatable, the Bloody Mary's staying power leaves no question. The Bloody Mary is a vodka-soaked nutritional breakfast and hangover cure all in one. What else can you want?

Ardbeg’s Smoky Bloody Mary

Scotch Whiskey , Modern Classics

Why settle for the usual Bloody Mary? Give it a delectable smoky update by adding Ardbeg and all the right garnishes. It will quickly be clear how premium scotch can elevate the classic vodka cocktail.

London Spritz

Gin , Modern Classics

Give your next Spritz a British upgrade with this gin-based version.

Franny & Joe

Liqueurs , Modern Classics

Some people would rather start their day with caffeine. Those drinkers will appreciate the Franny & Joe. The mix of authentic hazelnut liqueur and cold-brew coffee makes this cocktail perfect for brunch. Add cream to transform this cocktail into the right kind of morning starter.

Campari Orange

Liqueurs , Modern Classics

Think of this as a refined Italian alternative to a Screwdriver. The orange juice makes it a natural fit in the family of brunch cocktails, while the Campari gives it Italian authenticity. The Campari Orange isn’t the most famous use of Campari—that distinction goes to the Negroni—but this aperitivo should really, truly be a brunch staple.

Frangelico Frizzante

Liqueurs , Modern Classics

The Frizzante is a perfect sip for enjoying brunch alfresco. Crafted with wild Tonda Gentile hazelnuts from the Piedmont region of Northern Italy, Frangelico adds the perfect nutty flavor with a hint of sweetness complemented by the lime citrus in the Frizzante cocktail.

Americano

Liqueurs Vermouth / Aperitif Wine , Classics

The name is misleading, since this aperitivo is an Italian classic. It’s the perfect marriage of Campari and Cinzano, two of the most delicious and historic Italian exports. Encourage customers to kick off their brunch with this Italian original, and don’t settle for any knockoffs.

Aperol Spritz

Champagne & Sparkling Wine , Classics

A lot of people like a little something bubbly with their brunch. Move past the Mimosa and the rosé, and satisfy that craving with an Aperol Spritz. An Aperol Spritz is bubbly and low-proof, making it the perfect cocktail for daytime drinking. This is one of the most popular cocktails in Italy. Soon enough, it will be a favorite for your customers, too.

Uptown Ways

Brandy / Cognac Champagne & Sparkling Wine Cognac , Modern Classics

Bubbly and berries are cognac’s BFFs in this bright sparkling rosé cocktail.

Cucumber Snapper

Gin , Modern Classics

With some tomato but also other ingredients to tone it down and chill it out, this cocktail by Brian Bartels, of New York City’s Fedora and the author of The Bloody Mary: The Lore and Legend of a Cocktail Classic, with Recipes for Brunch and Beyond (Ten Speed Press, $19), includes an ounce of tomato juice. But it’s tempered by cucumber, gin and ginger beer, yielding a refreshing quaff.

Shannon’s Sangrita/Michelada

Beer , Modern Classics

Lower alcohol than most Bloody Marys, Shannon’s Sangrita/Michelada (named for creator Shannon Ponche of Clover Club and Leyenda in New York City) mixes carrot, papaya, orange and lime juices, spiced with two types of chile powder and topped up with Mexican beer for a drink that’s not exactly a Bloody but offers a similar sweet-savory-spicy appeal.

Bunny Mary

Aquavit Vodka , Modern Classics

Carrots, cayenne and caper brine, yes. Tomatoes, no! The Bunny Mary, created by Extra Fancy’s Rob Krueger in New York City, gets its vibrant hue from carrot juice, punched up with savory carrot brine and a spicy cayenne-and-paprika rim for the glass.

Scotch & Ginger

Scotch , Modern Classics Tiki / Tropical

The Scotch & Ginger is better experienced than explained. The unforgettable blend of sweetness and spice defies description.

Vice Royalty

Pisco , Modern Classics

Beverage director Taha Ismail wanted to do a seasonal riff on a Pisco Sour that was clean and refreshing. Fresh mandarin and yuzu juices make for a citrus-y cordial that offsets Strega’s piney profile, while Peychaud’s bitters meld nicely with the pisco’s floral notes. “This drink has enough complexity without being overwhelming and [is] very consumable on any patio,” he says.

Rosso Bellini

Vodka , Modern Classics

This cocktail at Las Vegas’ Lago by Julian Serrano, created by Ricardo Murcia, who’s now the beverage director at MGM National Harbor, represents elements found at the Bellagio hotel. The froth represents the lake in front of the hotel, the caramel nest is an homage to the fountains timed to the music, and the golden raspberry is a nod to the dome on top of the building. The overall effect is sweet, tart and frothy.

Favola Bella

Amaro , Modern Classics

When SoBou’s executive chef Juan Carlos Gonzalez was ordering cases of perfectly in-season satsuma, a Chinese seedless and easy-peeling orange, bar chef Laura Bellucci felt she had to do a cocktail using the sweet fruit. “I really like working with Amaro Montenegro and wanted to create something really floral and delicate to go with the citrus juice.”

Bit of Tongue

Modern Classics

“I enjoy using grapefruit in a shrub because it allows the brightness and flavor of the grapefruit to come through and cuts down on the typical tartness of the grapefruit,” says Nic Christiansen, the beverage director at Lola. “Allowing the acid from the apple cider vinegar and the sugar to lift the grapefruit flavor [creates] a more complex grapefruit flavor.” Locally produced Copper & Kings Absinthe Superior lends the sip classic anise flavor, as well as forward floral and citrus notes.

Mirabelle 75

Brandy / Cognac Vodka , Modern Classics

Washington, D.C. French restaurant Mirabelle's take on the classic French 75 uses a namesake brandy from France, made from delicate mirabelle plums, as well as locally made vodka. “The fresh lemon juice adds brightness and acidity, while the simple syrup rounds out the drink, without making it cloying,” says Zach Faden of his cocktail. “The Mirabelle brut rosé provides refreshing levity and effervescence.”

Land of Happy

Gin , Modern Classics

“Sweet, herbaceous and acidic all at once, this is a great pre-dinner cocktail before a nice glass of white wine,” says 312 Chicago head bartender Jenn Knott of her cocktail. She experimented with using a syrup instead of a shrub, but the latter ended up keeping the drink more fresh and tart. White balsamic vinegar, made in Italy from the trebbiano grape, is mixed with white wine vinegar and cooked at a low temperature to retain its clearish color.

Mrs. Robinson

Gin , Modern Classics

For this cocktail at Portland Ore.’s Bacchus Bar, Andrew Call pours local Aviation American gin because its complex, herbaceous flavor plays off the tart lime and grapefruit. “Adding some house-made pineapple simple syrup gives it a welcome hint of a day on the beach,” says Call. “[And] topping it off with dry sparkling wine and Peychaud’s bitters makes all the flavors come together and light up your tongue.”

Veronica Rose

Modern Classics

This red-tinged cocktail by Erick Castro at San Diego’s Polite Provisions gets its heady fragrance from syrup steeped with rose petals, while Aperol lends bittersweet pink grapefruit and orange notes. “The scent of flowers in bloom is such a visceral experience that is so difficult to capture in a drink,” says Castro. “Having tried rose petals in tea, I was confident that it would lend itself to the steeping process well.”

Celebratini

Vodka , Modern Classics

This cocktail from The Thinking Girl’s Guide to Drinking (Cocktails Without Regrets) (Regan Arts, $24.95) by Ariane Resnick and Brittini Rae occupies a middle ground between Martini and green juice.

Frozen Sangria

Frozen / Blended

Wine, fruit and booze—what’s not to love?

Blackberry Wine Slushy

Vodka , Frozen / Blended

Now you have the perfect use for that bit of leftover wine.

Orange Sherbet Mimosa Punch

Punches

Joy Wilson, aka Joy the Baker, has created this perfectly springy and bubbly brunch drink found in her book Over Easy. The citrusy cocktail for a crowd perfectly combines the whimsy of sherbet we all know and love from childhood with the adult effervescence of a weekend morning Mimosa. The result is simple yet brilliant.

Irish Coffee

Irish Whiskey

Prepare to fall under the charm of the most famous coffee cocktail of all time. As befits a drink with Irish heritage, there’s many a tall tale surrounding its origins.

Bourbon Milk Punch

Bourbon / American Whiskey , Classics

This classic brunch cocktail hails from New Orleans.

Red Snapper

Gin , Classics

This classic gin cocktail is an alternative to the Bloody Mary.

Lunar Eclipse

Vodka , Modern Classics

At upscale Dallas gastropub Victor Tangos, bartender Matt Ragan wanted to offer his guests a turmeric-infused vodka drink that could give them a nice healthy buzz.

Spark & Stormy

Modern Classics

Who says coffee cocktails can’t be a little topical? This creation from Vance Henderson of Drambuie not only adds in the juiciness of pineapple but also notes of fresh basil and a splash of mezcal—just for fun.

Sugared Cranberry Ginger Mimosa

Modern Classics

This three-ingredient celebration cocktail from The Cookie Rookie couldn't be simpler. It's perfect for every winter holiday, from Thanksgiving straight through to Valentine's Day.

Robin Redbreast

Vodka , Modern Classics

If you’d like to make your drink a festive shade of red for the holidays, try this vodka cocktail with blood orange. "Blood oranges have a slightly different flavor than the oranges we are most accustomed to," says Kevin Denton, the national mixologist for Pernod Ricard. "The main thing to remember is that orange juice, particularly anything not freshly squeezed, is much more mellow in cocktails that we think it’s going to be."

Seelbach

Bourbon / American Whiskey , Modern Classics

The glittering mixture of local bourbon, orange liqueur, two kinds of bitters, and Champagne is the signature drink of Louisville's Seelbach Hotel.

Caesar

Vodka , Modern Classics

The Canadian answer to the Bloody Mary, this vodka cocktail originally hails from the Calgary Inn, where it may be the only cocktail recipe inspired by a pasta dish.

Vladimiry

Vodka , Modern Classics

If you’re getting tired of the same old Bloody Mary recipe, it’s time to meet her distant cousin from the East, the Vladimiry.

Joan Collins

Vodka , Modern Classics

This drink is delicately pink and 100 percent spa day, which is exactly how I imagine the life and times of Joan Collins.

Ginger Gin Fizz

Gin , Modern Classics

This brunch cocktail, served at Barcelona’s popular Xixbar, is ideal for an early-morning pick-me-up.

Sin Nombre

Tequila , Modern Classics

The secret ingredient in this blushing glass? A hint of refreshing aloe vera juice.

The Rose Garden

Gin , Modern Classics

Strawberry, pineapple and rose combine in this refreshing gin cocktail.

Lychee

Vodka , Modern Classics

Pistachios, coconut, lychee and rum combine to make one tasty drink that’s on the menu at BDK in San Francisco.

Vickers Valiant

Liqueurs Vodka , Modern Classics

This vodka cocktail is both sweet and tart.

Amsterdam 75

Gin , Modern Classics

Swap gin for genever to get this twist on the classic French 75.

Rosé Cobbler

Vermouth / Aperitif Wine , Modern Classics

This refreshing cocktail is low in alcohol and high in flavor.

RumChata Iced Coffee

Liqueurs , Modern Classics

Get your morning fix with a kick.

Tea & C Time

Cachaça , Modern Classics

This drink combines England’s deep history and ties with tea with the Brazilian sugarcane spirit cachaça.

Holy Guac-a-Mary

Tequila , Modern Classics

Tequila and tomatillo "salsa" take this Bloody Mary to Mexico.

Mimosa

Classics

Bring elegance to any brunch.

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