While we don't think that you need an excuse to celebrate with a cocktail, it's World Cocktail Day (13th May) which means there's even more reason to get a couple ingredients from the drinks cupboard, some ice, a shaker and make something rather wonderful.
Here at ShortList we love a good cocktail and have decided to celebrate World Cocktail Day the only way we know how - by making a list. Without further ado, here are 10 things you can do to celebrate World Cocktail Day the right way. Cheers!
1 Get a No11 Martini Cocktail Kit from the world’s best bar
London’s The Connaught Bar has teamed up with The Saatchi Gallery for a new cocktail kit which brings its famous No11 Martini into homes. The kit comes with plenty of pre-mixed No11 Martini (made with Grey Goose), two brilliant hand-painted cocktail glasses inspired by Jackson Pollock’s action painting and a Grey Goose stirrer and bar spoon.
All proceeds from the kits will directly support Saatchi and their Learning Programme, which aims to make contemporary art accessible for all. And two of the kits will feature a one-of-a-kind ‘cocktail connoisseur’ mixology experience for up to two guests. Featuring a private mixology class with Director of Mixology, Ago Perrone and Head Mixologist, Giorgio Bargiani.
Price wise, they are £100 and there are 100 available. The two ‘cocktail connoisseur’ editions are priced at £1,000 per kit and come with “a hands-on one-on-one mixology masterclass to learn the bespoke art of the martini cocktail with Ago and Giorgio at the renowned Connaught Bar.”
2 Get yourself a Stein’s at Home and Black Lines cocktail kit
This is fun. Rick Stein Restaurants has partnered with East London's Black Lines to create two limited-edition Stein's at Home kits. The kits are each paired with the perfect cocktails to enjoy pre and post-dinner, and are only available for a limited time.
From Friday 14th May to Friday 11th June you can purchase a kit which include four bottles of aperitif and digestif cocktails. These include a pre-dinner spicy Tommy's Margarita and a post-dinner Negroni.
As this is Rick Stein, fish is also on the menu with the choice of the Sea Bass Box (£65), complete with mussels to start, Thai-inspired sea bass for main and white chocolate fool for dessert. Or the Indonesian Seafood Curry Box (£70) which includes Cornish cider mussels, Indonesian seafood curry for main and passion fruit Eton mess to finish.
3 Try out one of these Chivas cocktails
Chivas is celebrating World Cocktail Day with a number of whisky cocktails which all sound pretty damn delicious.
There is an Old Fashioned, a Chivas XV Champagne Cocktail and Chivas Elderflower Highball to choose from.
Here’s the ingredients and how to make them:
Chivas Old Fashioned
- 50ml Chivas (any blend)
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters
- 5ml sugar syrup
- Orange zest, to garnish
How to make it
- 1 Stir all ingredients together with ice in a mixing vessel.
- 2 Strain into a rocks glass with a large block of ice,
- 3 Garnish with orange zest.
- 4 Serve.
Chivas Elderflower Highball
- 40ml Chivas 12
- 15ml elderflower cordial
- 140ml soda water
- Lemon zest, to garnish
How to make it
- 1 Add Chivas and cordial to a highball glass and fill to the top with ice.
- 2 Add soda water and give a small stir to blend ingredients.
- 3 Add another cube of ice (if needed) to make sure the ice is tight and compact.
- 4 Garnish with a lemon zest.
- 5 Serve.
Chivas XV Champagne Cocktail
- 15ml Chivas XV
- 3 dashes Angostura bitters
- 1 sugar cube
- Top with champagne
How to make it
- 1 Drop sugar cube into champagne flute, then add Angostura bitters on top.
- 2 Add Chivas XV.
- 3 Top with champagne.
- 4 Serve.
4 Snap up this brilliant Rainbow Cocktail box
Binary Botanical and Queers Without Beers have teamed up for this fantastic cocktail kit which proves you don’t need high amounts of booze to have some fun. The Rainbow Cocktail boxes have been created to celebrate iconic figures within the LGBTIQ+ community, with each mocktail representing an icon.
The box itself contains five bottles of 0.5% beers from Binary Botanical Gimber, 2 bottles of Twelve below tonic, one bottle of Jeffrey’s tonic and Pimento ginger and chilli - all the ingredients you need to create eight cocktails.
The best bit is that it’s just £19.99 for the box - it’s being sold at cost to “to offer affordable drinks to those wishing to embrace a non-alcoholic alternative this summer.”
5 Have the best ‘Scottish Mexican’ cocktail around
Storywood tequila has always had something of a Scottish twist. Its aged in Scottish Speyside whisky casks and its found, Michael Ballantyne, was born there. So it makes sense that the cocktail they’ve made for World Cocktail today is a Scot-Mex infusion.
Called the Storywood Flight of the Hummingbird Cocktail, this is how you make it:
- 40ml Storywood Speyside 7 Reposado
- 20ml Mango Liqueur
- 10ml Agave Nectar
- 15ml The Scottish Bee Company Raspberry and Ginger Shrub
- 1 Egg White
Add all the ingredients to a shaker and dry shake. Add ice to the shaker and shake again until the shaker feels cold. Fine strain into a chilled coupé glass and garnish with an edible flower.
6 Try these two cocktails that come straight from the Cotswolds
Head of Mixology Oliver Morris at Cotswolds Distillery has come up with two great cocktails for World Cocktail Day, a Cotswolds Boulevardier (negroni) and the gin-based Cotswolds Clover Leaf. This is how you make them:
- 45ml Cotswolds Single Malt Whisky
- 30ml Sweet Vermouth
- 30ml Campari
Place all the ingredients into an ice filled cocktail jar. Stir and strain into an ice filled rocks glass and garnish with an orange wedge or dehydrated orange wheel.
Cotswolds Clover Leaf
- 50ml Cotswolds Dry Gin
- 15ml Fresh Lime Juice
- 12.5ml Raspberry Syrup
- 1 egg white (optional)
- 5 fresh raspberries and 2 mint leaves
Muddle the raspberries and mint. Shake all the ingredients over ice and strain back into the shaker without ice. Dry shake and fine strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with fresh raspberry and mint.
7 Get inspired with the Alchemist Cocktail Book
This recently launched cocktail book is celebrating 10 years of The Alchemist and has over 100 cocktails inside that mix booze, chemistry and theatre. Perfect then for World Cocktail Day and beyond.
The book is packed with some fantastic images and lets you into all the secrets you need to make brilliant cocktails at home.
The Alchemist Cocktail Book is available now - it usually retails for £16.99 but there's currently £5 off the hardback on Amazon.
8 Create an espresso martini without the hangover
Non-alcoholic spirits brand STRYKK has come up with some great cocktail recipes for World Cocktail Day, with its espresso martini catching our eye. Here’s what you need to make it:
- 50ml STRYKK NOT R*M
- 50ml Cold Brew concentrate
- 15ml Sugar syrup
- Coffee beans to garnish
Combine all the ingredients together in a shaker with ice. Shake well before straining into a martini glass.
9 Make the perfect margarita
Look, we aren’t here to tell you how to make the perfect margarita, that’s down to tequila educator Oliver Pergl who gave us his tips back in February for National Margarita Day. Head to the article to find out more. Seriously, we’ve followed his recommendations and the drink we made was fantastic.
10 Make sure you have all the right ingredients
Whatever cocktail you are making tonight or in the future, make sure it’s a good ‘un by getting the right spirits from our various guides. Cheers!
- The best gin, ranked
- The best whisky taste tested
- The best vodka for mixers and more
- The best rum, all batches tried