25 Classic Cocktails

With so many cocktails and variations of cocktails out there, it’s no wonder we sometimes forget the staples of the industry. No matter how innovative we get, there are still those cocktails that will forever stand the test of time. The next time you’re out, rather than pick some fancy drink with the bright colors and long name, go for one of the classics. These drinks will never go out of style and remain some of simplest to make. Here are 25 cocktails that any bar tender or self proclaimed enthusiast should know how to make. I present to you, the who’s who of cocktails:


  • 1 medium ripe, peeled and pureed peach
  • 4 – 6 oz Champagne

Pour peach puree into glass and slowly add champagne. Stir gently. Garnish with a peach slice.

Bloody Mary

  • 1 oz  Vodka
  • 3 oz tomato juice
  • 2 red hot sauce
  • 2 green hot sauce
  • 1 dash Worcestershire sauce
  • 0.5 oz lemon juice
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 pinch peppers
  • 1 stalk celery

Add Vodka, tomato juice, red hot sauce, green hot sauce, Worcester sauce, lemon juice, pinch of salt, pinch of pepper. Pour back and forth between two mixing glasses. Strain into an ice-filled highball glass. Garnish with celery stalk.


  • 1 oz vodka
  • 1/2 oz  triple sec
  • 1/2 oz Rose’s® lime juice
  • 1/2 oz cranberry juice

Shake vodka, triple sec, lime and cranberry juice vigorously in a shaker with ice. Strain into a martini glass, garnish with a lime wedge on the rim, and serve.


  • 2 1/2 oz Light Rum
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1/2 oz simple syrup

Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with lemon twist.

Dark & Stormy

  • 2 oz Gosling’s® Black Seal rum
  • 4 oz ginger beer

Mix ingredients together in an old-fashioned glass over cracked ice, and serve.

Harvey Wallbanger

  • 1.25 oz Vodka
  • 0.5 oz Galliano Liqueur
  • 3 oz Orange juice
  • 1 slice orange

In a Collins glass or other tall glass filled with ice, mix the vodka and orange juice. Float Galliano on top and stir. Garnish with orange slice. The maraschino cherry was not part of the original recipe, but was added later for color.


  • 2 oz light rum
  • 2 oz dark rum
  • 2 oz passion fruit juice
  • 1 oz orange juice
  • 1/2 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp simple syrup
  • 1 tbsp grenadine
  • Garnish: orange slice and cherry

Shake all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice and strain into a hurricane glass. Garnish with a cherry and an orange slice.

Long Island

  • 1 part vodka
  • 1 part Tequila
  • 1 part rum
  • 1 part gin
  • 1 part triple sec
  • 1 1/2 parts sweet and sour mix
  • 1 splash Coca-Cola®

Mix ingredients together over ice in a glass. Pour into a shaker and give one brisk shake. Pour back into the glass and make sure there is a touch of fizz at the top. Garnish with lemon.

Mai Tai (Original Trader Vic Recipe)

  • 2 oz 17yr old J. Wray Nephew Jamaican Rum
  • 1/2 oz Curacao
  • 1/2 oz Orgeat Syrup
  • 1/4 oz Rock Candy Syrup
  • Juice of 1 fresh lime

Pour the ingredients over shaved ice in a double old-fashioned glass, shook it well, add one spent lime shell and garnish it with a sprig of fresh mint.

The Manhattan

  • 3/4 oz sweet vermouth
  • 2 1/2 ozbourbon whiskey
  • 1 dash Angostura® bitters
  • 1 maraschino cherry
  • 1 twist orange peel

Combine the vermouth, bourbon whiskey, and bitters with 2 – 3 ice cubes in a mixing glass. Stir gently, don’t bruise the spirits and cloud the drink. Place the cherry in a chilled cocktail glass and strain the whiskey mixture over the cherry. Rub the cut edge of the orange peel over the rim of the glass and twist it over the drink to release the oils but don’t drop it in.

The Martini

  • 1 1/2 oz gin
  • 1/4 oz dry vermouth (or the amount of your preference)
  • Garnish: cocktail olives

Mix both ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with olives.


  • 2 oz silver tequila
  • juice of half lime
  • 1 oz orange curacao (or Cointreau)
  • Garnish: lime wedge
  • Rim: salt

Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Pour into a margarita glass rimmed with salt and garnish with lime wedge.

Mint Julep

  • 3 oz Bourbon
  • 6 Fresh mint leaves
  • 1 tsp. superfine sugar
  • Crushed ice

Muddle mint leaves with superfine sugar and a little water in a mint julep cup. Fill the cup with ice. Pour bourbon and garnish with a sprig of fresh mint.


  • 1 1/2 oz light rum
  • 1 tbs superfine sugar
  • Lime wedges
  • Club soda
  • Mint sprigs

Muddle mint leaves, superfine sugar and lime in a mixing glass. Add 1 1/2 oz light rum and ice in a cocktail shaker and shake. Strain the mixture into a tall glass and top with club soda. Garnish with fresh mint sprig. Sugarcane syrup can be used to replace superfine sugar.

Moscow Mule

  • 1 1/4 oz Smirnoff vodka
  • 3 oz. ginger beer
  • 1 tsp. sugar syrup
  • 1/4 oz. lime juice
  • 1 sprig mint
  • 1 slice lime

In a copper mug, pour vodka over ice. Add sugar syrup and lime juice. Top with ginger beer and stir. Garnish with mint sprig and lime slice.


  • 1 oz Gin
  • 1 oz Campari
  • 3/4 oz Sweet Vermouth
Stir ingredients in a mixing glass, strain into a chilled cocktail glass (or ice-filled double rocks glass) and garnish with an orange twist.

Old Fashioned

  • 2 oz blended whiskey
  • 1 sugar cube
  • 1 dash bitters
  • 1 slice lemon
  • 1 cherry
  • 1 slice orange

Combine the sugar cube, bitters, and 1 tsp. water in an old-fashioned glass. Muddle well, add blended whiskey, and stir. Add a twist of lemon peel and ice cubes. Add slices of orange and lemon and top with the cherry. Serve with a swizzle stick.

Pimms Cup

  • 1 shot Pimm’s® gin
  • 7-Up® soda
  • 1 slice cucumber
  • 1 twist lemon peel

Pour Pimm’s no.1 into a highball glass. Add a twist of lemon and fill with 7-up. Garnish with a slice of cucumber.

Pina Colada

  • 3 oz light rum
  • 3 tbsp coconut cream
  • 3 tbsp crushed pineapples

Put all ingredients into an electric blender with 2 cups of crushed ice. Blend at a high speed for a short length of time. Strain into a Collins glass and serve with a straw.

Sex on The Beach

  • 1 1/2 oz vodka
  • 1/2 oz peach schnapps
  • 2 oz cranberry juice
  • 2 oz orange juice

Add vodka and peach schnapps to a highball glass over ice. Fill with equal measures of cranberry juice and orange juice, and stir.

Side Car

  • 3/4 oz triple sec
  • 1/2 oz cognac
  • 3/4 oz lemon juice

Shake ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a twist of lemon peel.

Tom Collins

  • 2 oz gin
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • 1 tsp superfine sugar
  • 3 oz club soda
  • 1 maraschino cherry
  • 1 slice orange

In a shaker half-filled with ice cubes, combine the gin, lemon juice, and sugar. Shake well. Strain into a Collins glass almost filled with ice cubes. Add the club soda. Stir and garnish with the cherry and the orange slice.

Tequila Sunrise

  • 2 oz tequila
  • 4 oz orange juice
  • 1 oz grenadine
  • Garnish: lime wedge (optional)

Build the drink over ice in a highball glass. Garnish with a lime wedge and serve with straw.

White Russian

  • 2 oz vodka
  • 1 oz light cream (or milk)
  • 1 oz Kahlua

Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Pour into a rocks glass.


  • 1 oz Light Rum
  • 1 oz Anejo Rum
  • 1/4 oz 151 Proof Rum
  • 1/2 oz Apricot Brandy
  • 1 oz Pineapple Juice
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • 2 oz Orange Juice
  • 1 cup Crushed Ice
  • 1 tsp Superfine Sugar
  • Garnish: cherry, orange slice, mint sprig
  • Glassware: Cocktail Glass

Blend all the ingredients at low speed in blender and strain into Collins glass. Garnish with the fruits and mint sprig. Serve with a straw.

1 Comment

  1. Hammer Meyer Reply

    Good list, have made most of these. Surprised the Gimlet is not in there (gin preferably)… Talk about a classic cocktail, it ranks up there with the Old Fashion and Tom Collins. But nothing can beat a well-made Manhattan!

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