For booze lovers living today, Prohibition may sound like one of the most terrible times in American history. But as Matthew Rowley explains in his new book Lost Recipes of Prohibition, the law — which went into effect in 1920 and lasted nearly 14 years — was anything but watertight. If you knew the right people, or the right place to be, you could certainly get a drink.
Recently, here at Cocktail Builder, we’ve been obsessed with everything mezcal — from finding new recipes that highlight and balance the spirit’s signature smoke to swapping it into cocktails that are classically made with its agave-based cousin, tequila. Despite the similar obsession across the United States — sales have doubled over the last four years thanks in large part to its growing availability and appearance on craft cocktail menus all across the country — mezcal […]
Of all the styles of cocktails — sours and Champagnes, fizzes and flips — perhaps no other has received a worse reputation than the tiki drink. First popularized in Hollywood in the mid-1930s, tropical-inspired sips were all the rage among sweltering LA locals for several decades. Come the ‘60s and ‘70s, however, bartenders who didn’t specialize in tiki recipes cheapened the drinks with processed juices and overly sugary syrups, making them more synonymous with tacky […]
As if we needed an excuse to drink beer (we don’t), April 7th marks National Beer Day in the United States. Unlike a lot of other booze-related holidays — International Gin & Tonic Day, National Cosmopolitan Day, and World Whisky Day, just to name a few — National Beer Day wasn’t invented just for any old reason to drink. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.) We’ve actually got history to thank. Let us explain.
Much like that bit character who comes into a movie for just a few moments but has an indelible effect on the progression of the story, vermouth is in all-too-often forgotten player in the journey of a cocktail. Despite the fact that it’s a necessary ingredient to many classic drinks (martini and Manhattan, anyone?), vermouth is frequently pushed to the wayside — relegated to a dusty spot on your bar alongside bottles of creme de […]
If you’re drinking with The Dude from The Big Lebowski, he’ll have nothing but a White Russian. He drinks glass after glass of what can best be described as chocolate milk for adults — a recipe that hinges on its use of Kahlua coffee liqueur. Thanks in large part to the popularity of the 1998 film, it’s nearly impossible not to think of a White Russian when thinking of Kahlua. That said, if, like The […]
Like fashion and food, the landscape of cocktails is largely predicted by popular trends. Thanks to the resurgence of tiki drinks like the Jungle Bird, refined disco sips like the Harvey Wallbanger, and concoctions that questioned everything you thought you knew about a particular spirit (hello, Sherry cocktails!), 2016 was a fun time for liquor lovers. But with a new year comes new trends and new techniques. Here are three things to look out for […]
For this week’s article, we partnered with Katie Stryjewski of Garnish. Check out her blog for fascinating cocktail history, as well as new recipes featuring your favorite spirits. When researching the stories behind classic cocktails, certain people and places seem to come up again and again, looming large in the history of mixology. One such place is Harry’s New York Bar in Paris. In 1911, a famous American jockey named Tod Sloane had a wild idea […]
For this week’s article, we’ve partnered with former bartender Daniel Robinson of The Fervent Shaker. Check out his blog for new recipes and inspiration. There are two main categories every tequila falls into: mixto (blended) or 100% agave. The former is the type you’re likely to find at a college party. It’s cheaper than 100% agave and can leave you with a nasty pile of regret in the morning. The latter, on the other hand, […]
If you’ve never had a caipirinha, you are missing out. The classic Brazilian cocktail is made with nothing more than cachaça (a sugarcane-based spirit similar to rum), lime juice, and sugar, making it an easy and refreshing sip that’s perfect for the summer. While the true origins of the cocktail are not completely known, it’s believed that the recipe first began around 1918. Created in São Paulo, it was made with honey, garlic, and lime […]