As a bartender, I've seen it all. From the classic Old Fashioned to the trendy Moscow Mule, there's a cocktail for every taste and occasion. But in recent years, a new category has emerged: the Modern Cocktail.
These drinks push the boundaries of traditional mixology, incorporating unexpected ingredients and techniques to create truly unique and exciting beverages.
What sets the Modern Cocktail apart is its emphasis on creativity and experimentation. Bartenders are no longer content to simply follow established recipes; instead, they're constantly searching for new ways to surprise and delight their customers.
From infusing spirits with unusual flavors to using molecular gastronomy techniques to create unexpected textures, the Modern Cocktail is all about pushing the limits of what's possible.
Of course, not every Modern Cocktail is a success. For every innovative creation that becomes a hit, there are dozens of failed experiments that never see the light of day. But when a bartender nails it, the result is truly magical.
The best Modern Cocktails are a perfect blend of art and science, combining the skills of a master mixologist with the creativity of an artist. So if you're looking to try something new and exciting, forget the old standbys and give a Modern Cocktail a try. Who knows – you might just discover your new favorite drink.
1. Modern Pineapple Madras
Looking for a tropical escape in a glass? Look no further than the Modern Pineapple Madras cocktail. This modern twist on the classic Madras cocktail is packed with fruity goodness, thanks to the addition of pineapple juice and cherries. It's a refreshing and easy-to-drink cocktail that's perfect for any occasion.
Plus, with the added vitamins and minerals from the fruit juice, you can feel good about sipping on this delicious concoction. Whether you're a fan of vodka cocktails or just looking for something new to try, the Modern Pineapple Madras is definitely worth a taste.
2. Old Cuban
The Old Cuban is a modern cocktail made with bourbon, Prosecco, and Angostura bitters, with a hint of fresh mint. It's a bubbly and boozy drink that is both sippable and smooth.
The use of bourbon and Prosecco adds a bit of fruitiness, while the dashes of bitters provide a warm spice that makes it unforgettable. The Old Cuban is a must-try for anyone looking for a modern cocktail that is both sophisticated and delicious.
3. Vodka Thyme Lemonade
The "Vodka Thyme Lemonade" is a refreshing and light cocktail that is perfect for any occasion. This modern cocktail is a simple yet delicious blend of clean and smooth vodka with a sweet and tart bite of lemonade. What sets this cocktail apart is the addition of fresh thyme, which adds a fragrant touch of herbs to the drink.
The result is a delightful and vibrant combination that is perfect for sipping on a warm summer day. Whether you're hosting a party or just looking for a refreshing drink to enjoy, the "Vodka Thyme Lemonade" is a must-try cocktail that is sure to impress.
4. Pornstar Martini
The Pornstar Martini is a modern and seductive cocktail made with vanilla vodka, Passoa, lime juice, and a shot of prosecco on the side.
It's sweet, zingy, and garnished with fresh passion fruit, making it a must-try for anyone who loves fruity and easy-to-drink cocktails. The provocative name adds to its allure, and it's one of the UK's favorite drinks.
5. Espresso Martini With Gin
The Espresso Martini with Gin is a delightful twist on a classic cocktail. This modern cocktail is perfect for holiday parties or as an afternoon pick-me-up with a kick. The addition of gin adds an earthy-pine taste that balances out the sweetness of the Kahlua and vanilla syrup.
The espresso shot provides the necessary caffeine kick, while the simple syrup adds a touch of sweetness. Overall, this cocktail is a must-try for any coffee and cocktail lover.
6. Blackberry Ginger Prosecco Cocktail
The Blackberry Ginger Prosecco Cocktail is a refreshing and easy-to-make drink that's perfect for spring and summer. The cocktail features a homemade blackberry ginger simple syrup that pairs perfectly with lime, vodka, and Prosecco.
This cocktail is great for parties or brunches, as guests can assemble their own drinks using the ingredients that are laid out in front of them. The recipe can also be multiplied to make a pitcher for larger groups. The Blackberry Ginger Prosecco Cocktail is a must-try for anyone looking for a delicious and refreshing drink that's perfect for warm weather.
7. Cynar Manhattan
If you're looking for a sophisticated twist on the classic Manhattan, the Cynar Manhattan is a must-try. This modern cocktail features Cynar, an Italian liqueur with a bittersweet flavor, which adds intriguing notes of bitter herbs, caramel, and toffee to the drink.
The cocktail is easy enough to make at home, but impressive enough to serve to guests. It's a perfect choice for those who love bitter flavors and want to experiment with new amaros. Overall, the Cynar Manhattan is a delicious and unique cocktail that is definitely worth trying.
8. Paper Plane Cocktail
The Paper Plane Cocktail is a modern, complex, and boozy drink made with bourbon, Aperol, Amaro Nonino, and freshly squeezed lemon juice. It was created by bartender Sam Ross in 2008 and named after the M.I.A. song "Paper Planes".
The cocktail is bitter, sour, and perfectly balanced. Amaro Nonino, a unique Italian liqueur, adds caramel, citrus, and herbal notes. It's a must-try for anyone who loves modern cocktails.
9. Aperol Cosmopolitan Cocktail
The Aperol Cosmopolitan Cocktail is a modern twist on the classic Cosmo recipe, featuring Aperol and vodka as the main ingredients. The drink is perfectly balanced with a tart and sweet flavor, and its vibrant color comes from the bright-red Aperol, a bittersweet liqueur made from oranges and herbs.
This updated version of the Cosmo does away with the cranberry juice and triple sec, giving it a more adult and sophisticated taste. If you're looking to impress your guests with a modern and delicious cocktail, the Aperol Cosmopolitan is definitely worth a try.
10. Eastside Cocktail
The Eastside Cocktail is a refreshing and well-balanced gin-based drink that is perfect for happy hour at home. This cocktail is a variation of the classic Gimlet, with the addition of fresh cucumber and mint flavors that take it to the next level.
The cucumber and mint are muddled separately to release their distinct flavors, then shaken with lime juice, simple syrup, and gin. The result is a tart and refreshing cocktail with a hint of cooling cucumber and a burst of mint. The Eastside Cocktail is a perfect choice for gin lovers who are looking for a simple and delicious cocktail that is easy to make at home.
11. Skinny Grasshopper Frozen Yogurt Cocktail
The Skinny Grasshopper Frozen Yogurt Cocktail is a modern take on the classic Grasshopper cocktail. This version uses homemade frozen yogurt instead of ice cream, making it a lighter and healthier option. The cocktail has a chilly minty flavor and is perfect as an after-dinner treat. The original Grasshopper cocktail was created in 1918 in the French Quarter of New Orleans and has since become a classic.
This modern version is just as indulgent and delicious, with the added bonus of being lower in calories. The cocktail can be garnished with rainbow jimmies, chocolate, or a fresh sprig of mint. If you're looking for a refreshing and guilt-free cocktail, the Skinny Grasshopper Frozen Yogurt Cocktail is definitely worth trying.
12. Modern Negroni
The Modern Negroni is a contemporary twist on the classic Negroni cocktail. This updated version features a sweet herbal liqueur called Calisaya, which adds a unique flavor to the drink. The gin used in this cocktail is an Old Tom Gin, which is slightly sweeter than London Dry, but also slightly drier.
The sweet vermouth used in this cocktail is essential to achieving the perfect balance of flavors. The Modern Negroni should be stirred, not shaken, for the best results. This cocktail is perfect for those who enjoy a sweet and bitter flavor profile. If you're looking to try something new and exciting, the Modern Negroni is definitely worth a try.
13. Blackberry Bramble
The Blackberry Bramble is a refreshing and delicious gin-based cocktail that is perfect for spring and summer. Made with fresh or frozen blackberries, lemon, and a blackberry simple syrup, this cocktail is a twist on the classic Bramble cocktail.
With its bright flavors and sweet and sour notes, it is sure to be a crowd pleaser at any gathering. Whether you are a gin lover or just looking for a new cocktail to try, the Blackberry Bramble is definitely worth a taste.
14. Bramble Cocktail
The Bramble Cocktail is a modern twist on a gin sour that features the delicious addition of blackberries. This fruity concoction was created in 1984 by U.K. bartender Dick Bradsell and has been enjoyed by many drinkers ever since. The cocktail is made with fresh blackberries, simple sugar syrup, lemon juice, and plenty of ice.
It's just the right amount of sweet and sour, making it a perfect summer drink. The neon hue of the Bramble stands on its own, but it never hurts to add a little garnish. This cocktail is a must-try for anyone who loves a fruity gin cocktail.
15. Grapefruit Gin Mule
The Grapefruit Gin Mule is a refreshing and easy-to-make summer cocktail that combines the floral and citrus notes of gin with the spicy kick of ginger beer. Served in a copper mug, this cocktail is perfect for keeping cool on hot summer days.
The grapefruit juice adds a fresh and tangy twist to the classic Moscow Mule recipe, making it a must-try for any gin lover. Whether you're entertaining guests or just looking for a simple and delicious drink to enjoy on your own, the Grapefruit Gin Mule is a great choice.
16. French Gimlet
The French Gimlet is a refreshing and sophisticated gin cocktail that is perfect for those who enjoy a tart and floral flavor. This modern cocktail is made with just three ingredients, including gin, lime juice, and elderflower liqueur.
The addition of St Germain elderflower liqueur gives the French Gimlet a unique and warm floral flavor that sets it apart from other gin cocktails. This cocktail is perfect for sipping on a warm summer evening or for impressing guests at a dinner party. If you're looking for a chic and refreshing cocktail that's easy to make, the French Gimlet is definitely worth a try.
17. Elderflower Spanish Gin & Tonics
If you're looking for a refreshing and elegant cocktail to enjoy during the summer, look no further than the Elderflower Spanish Gin & Tonic.
This modern take on the classic Gin & Tonic features St. George Spirits' Botanivore gin, which is known for its bright citrus flavors and subtle juniper notes. The tonic is also an important component, and it's recommended to use a high-quality option like Fever Tree or Small Hands tonic syrup.
What sets this cocktail apart is the addition of grapefruit, rosemary, and juniper as garnishes, which not only add subtle flavors but also make for a beautiful presentation.
This Spanish-style Gin & Tonic is perfect for sipping on a hot day, and it's sure to impress your guests with its unique twist on a classic cocktail.
18. Pink Gin Spritz
The Pink Gin Spritz is a modern take on the classic Spritz cocktail. This fun and fruity cocktail is perfect for those who love a sweet and bitter flavor combination. The signature pink hue of the cocktail comes from the pink gin, which is made with a mix of Angostura bitters, spices, and herbs, and pairs perfectly with Prosecco and tonic water.
The cocktail is garnished with raspberries and a lime wedge, which adds to the overall flavorsome experience. This cocktail is perfect for those who love a refreshing and light drink, and it's sure to be a hit at any party or gathering.
19. The Summer Sun
"The Summer Sun" is a modern twist on the classic gin and tonic cocktail. It's made with a homemade thyme-infused simple syrup, muddled lemons, and a dash of champagne.
The addition of the simple syrup adds a touch of sweetness to the drink, making it perfect for sipping on a warm summer day. The fresh thyme adds a unique herbal flavor, and the champagne adds a subtle effervescence that makes this cocktail feel extra special.
20. Honey Paloma
If you're looking for a refreshing and unique tequila-based cocktail, the Honey Paloma is a must-try. This modern twist on the classic Paloma uses honey syrup instead of regular simple syrup, adding a touch of sweetness that perfectly complements the tart grapefruit juice.
The salted rim and grated grapefruit zest add an extra layer of flavor and texture to this already delicious cocktail. Whether you're a tequila lover or just looking to try something new, the Honey Paloma is definitely worth a taste.
21. Paper Plane
The Paper Plane Cocktail is a modern twist on the Last Word, and it's a drink that has quickly become a crowd favorite in cocktail bars across the US.
The beautiful red and pink-hued cocktail has a unique and well-balanced taste, with intense notes of Bourbon and a pinch of zestiness. The addition of a small paper plane garnish adds a playful touch to this delicious drink.
22. Skinny Pink Squirrel Cocktail
The Skinny Pink Squirrel Cocktail is a modern take on a vintage boozy beverage that will make you crave for summer. This cocktail is a variation of a vodka-ice cream combo, but instead of ice cream, it uses homemade frozen yogurt made with Greek yogurt to keep the consistency and drop some of the calories.
The cocktail is made with Cathead Vodka, creme de almond, and creme de cacao, and it's blended until smooth. The Pink Squirrel Cocktail is a perfect drink for anyone looking for a refreshing and light cocktail that is not too sweet. It's also a great option for those with sensitivity to lactic acid. The Skinny Pink Squirrel Cocktail is a must-try for anyone looking for a modern twist on a classic cocktail.