10 Cocktails Every Home Bartender Should Master


The old fashioned is a cocktail made by muddling sugar with bitters, adding whiskey or, less commonly, brandy, and garnishing with a twist of citrus rind. It is traditionally served in an old fashioned glass, which predated the cocktail.

Main alcohol: Whisky

Ingredients: 1 1/2 oz Bourbon or Rye whiskey, 2 dashes Angostura bitters, 1 Sugar cube, Few dashes plain water

Preparation: Place sugar cube in old fashioned glass and saturate with bitters, add a dash of plain water. Muddle until dissolved. Fill the glass with ice cubes and add whiskey. Garnish with orange slice, and a cocktail cherry.

Served: On the rocks; poured over ice

Standard garnish: Orange slice, Cocktail cherry

Drinkware: Old Fashioned glass



The martini is a cocktail made with gin and vermouth, and garnished with an olive or a lemon twist. Over the years, the martini has become one of the best-known mixed alcoholic beverages. H. L. Mencken called the martini "the only American invention as perfect as the sonnet", and E. B.

Main alcohol: Gin

Ingredients: 1/2 oz (1 part) Dry vermouth, 3 oz (6 parts) Gin

Preparation: Straight: Pour all ingredients into mixing glass with ice cubes. Stir well. Strain in chilled martini cocktail glass. Squeeze oil from lemon peel onto the drink, or garnish with olive.

Served: Straight (or on the rocks)

Standard garnish: Olive, Lemon twist

Drinkware: Cocktail glass



A Manhattan is a cocktail made with whiskey, sweet vermouth, and bitters. While rye is the traditional whiskey of choice, other commonly used whiskies include Canadian whisky, bourbon, blended whiskey, and Tennessee whiskey.

Main alcohol: Whisky

Ingredients: Maraschino cherry (Garnish), Dash Angostura bitters, 2 oz Rye or Canadian whisky, 3/4 oz Sweet red vermouth

Preparation: Stirred over ice, strained into a chilled glass, garnished, and served straight up.

Served: Straight up; without ice

Standard garnish: Cherry

Drinkware: Cocktail glass



A margarita is a cocktail consisting of tequila, orange liqueur, and lime juice often served with salt on the rim of the glass. The drink is served shaken with ice, blended with ice, or without ice.

Main alcohol: Tequila

Ingredients: 2 oz Tequila, 1 oz Lime juice, 1 oz Cointreau

Preparation: Rub the rim of the glass with the lime slice to make the salt stick to it. Shake the other ingredients with ice, then carefully pour into the glass (taking care not to dislodge any salt). Garnish and serve over ice.

Served: On the rocks; poured over ice

Standard garnish: Lime slice, Salt on the rim

Drinkware: Margarita glass



A Bloody Mary is a cocktail containing vodka, tomato juice, and other spices and flavorings including Worcestershire sauce, hot sauces, garlic, herbs, horseradish, celery, olives, salt, black pepper, lemon juice, lime juice or celery salt.

Main alcohol: Vodka

Ingredients: Worcestershire Sauce, Pepper, MORE

Preparation: Add dashes of Worcestershire Sauce, Tabasco, salt and pepper into highball glass, then pour all ingredients into highball with ice cubes. Stir gently. Garnish with celery stalk and lemon wedge (optional).

Served: On the rocks; poured over ice.

Standard garnish: Celery stalk or dill pickle spear

Drinkware: Highball glass



The Negroni is a popular Italian cocktail, made of one part gin, one part vermouth rosso, and one part Campari, garnished with orange peel. It is considered an apéritif. A properly made Negroni is stirred, not shaken, and built over ice in an old fashioned or ‘rocks’ glass and garnished with a slice of orange.

Main alcohol: Campari, Vermouth, Gin

Ingredients: 1 oz (1 part) Gin, 1 oz (1 part) Campari, 1 oz (1 part) Sweet red Vermouth

Preparation: Stir into glass over ice, garnish and serve.

Served: On the rocks

Standard garnish: Orange peel

Drinkware: Old Fashioned glass



Irish coffee is a cocktail consisting of hot coffee, Irish whiskey, and sugar, stirred, and topped with cream. The coffee is drunk through the cream.

Main alcohol: Irish whiskey

Ingredients: 2 2/3 oz (4 parts) Hot coffee, 1 1/3 oz (2 parts) Irish whiskey, 1 tsp. Brown sugar, 1 oz (1½ parts) Fresh cream

Preparation: Heat the coffee, whiskey and sugar; do not boil. Pour into glass and top with cream; serve hot.

Served: Hot

Drinkware: Irish coffee mug



The whiskey sour is a mixed drink containing whiskey, lemon juice, sugar, and optionally, a dash of egg white. With the egg white, it is sometimes called a Boston Sour. With a few bar spoons of full-bodied red wine floated on top, it is often referred to as a New York Sour.

Ingredients: 1 oz (2 parts) Fresh lemon juice, MORE

Preparation: Shake with ice. Strain into ice-filled old-fashioned glass to serve "on the rocks."

Served: Shaken; on the rocks

Standard garnish: Maraschino cherry, Lemon rind, Sugared glass, Orange slice

Drinkware: Old fashioned glass, Cobbler



A cosmopolitan, or informally a cosmo, is a cocktail made with vodka, triple sec, cranberry juice, and freshly squeezed or sweetened lime juice.

Main alcohol: Vodka

Ingredients: 1/2 oz Fresh lime juice, 1 oz Cranberry juice, 1/2 oz Cointreau, 1 1/2 oz Vodka Citron

Preparation: Add all ingredients into cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well and double strain into large cocktail glass. Garnish with lime wheel.

Served: Straight up; without ice

Standard garnish: Lime wedge, Lemon slice

Drinkware: Cocktail glass



The Tom Collins is a Collins cocktail made from gin, lemon juice, sugar, and carbonated water. First memorialized in writing in 1876 by Jerry Thomas, "the father of American bartender", this "gin and sparkling lemonade" drink is typically served in a Collins glass over ice.

Main alcohol: Gin

Ingredients: 1 oz (2 parts) Freshly squeezed lemon juice, MORE

Preparation: Mix the gin, lemon juice and sugar syrup in a tall glass with ice, top up with soda water, garnish and serve.

Served: On the rocks; poured over ice

Standard garnish: Lemon slice, Maraschino cherry

Drinkware: Collins glass