The World’s Best-Selling Classic Cocktails 2019

04 January, 2019

30. Sidecar

Down six places in this years list is the Sidecar. There have been many suggestions over the years as to who first made this cocktail, but what we do know is all stories lead to either Paris or London. Known for being a simple serve, it involves cognac. Just add Cointreau and lemon juice and you’ve got yourself a perfectly sour classic.

29. French 75

Up one place this year, the French 75 in its earliest form was created by Harry MacElhone in Harry’s New York Bar in Paris. The cocktail was popularised by The Savoy Cocktail Book and later appeared in The Stork Club, New York, which contributed to its popularity. Its pretty similar to the Tom Collins – just replace the soda with champagne, et voilà.

28. Vieux Carré

Down 11 places is the famous New Orleans classic Vieux Carré. While only 9% put the American whiskey drink in their top 10, one bar said it was its number one bestseller. Created in 1938 by Walter Bergeron, head bartender at the Carousel bar, the ‘Voo-car-ay’ is the perfect nightcap for any discerning drinker.

27. Aviation

Was it a secret handshake for bartenders? Or simply a concoction coloured with violette? Either way the Aviation is in exactly the same place on our list this year. Although Harry Craddock didn’t use Crème de Violette in his Aviation we’d recommend giving it a go. Try two parts gin, ½ part maraschino liqueur, ¼ part crème de violette and ¾ parts fresh lemon juice.

26. Piña Colada

“Yes, I like Pina Coladas, and getting caught in the rain” – the famous Piña Colada song by singer Rupert Holmes. While we might associate this Puerto Rican cocktail with the 70s, it’s very much back on trend. For a cool twist on the classic recipe check out Chris Moore at Coupette, London. His Champagne Piña Colada uses a mix of Bacardi, Trois Rivières Blanc, pineapple, coconut sorbet and Moët & Chandon – fancy.

25. Amaretto Sour

If any cocktail could dust off Amaretto’s rep it’s the Amaretto Sour. Despite being down three places this year, 10% of bars put it in their top 10 and two bars even put it as their number-one serve. While the history of this cocktail has been well and truly lost, what isn’t lost is the fact bartenders still serve it at the world’s best bars.

24. Pisco Sour

Pisco Sour, the 1920s Peruvian cocktail, is down five places. Victor Vaughen Morris, an American bartender, opened his bar in Lima in 1916 and subsequently surprised friends with the Pisco Sour, a mix of Peruvian pisco and American sour. There are lots of versions of this classic but the basic recipe is three parts pisco, one part simple syrup, one part lime juice, egg whites and a dash of Angostura bitters.

23. Americano

The Americano, originally known as the Milano-Torino is up 15 places. This Italian cocktail was first served by Gaspare Campari in his bar Caffè Campari in the 1860s. Unforgettably this classic was ordered by Bond in the first of Fleming’s novels, Casino Royale. It’s a simple yet sexy cocktail made with Campari, vermouth and soda water.

22. Gimlet

The Gimlet, once drunk by sailors to prevent scurvy, now has a more glamorous outlook, up eight places to 22nd. Out of bars polled, 12% said it was in their top 10 – not too shabby for a simple serve. Its two parts gin, one part lime juice, and ½ sweetener. But you won’t be short of variations to play around with.

21. Mai Tai

The Mai Tai is down three places this year with 13% of bartenders putting it in their top 10. The creation of this tiki cocktail is still unclear – Trader Vic and Don The Beachcomber, who were both rivals, claim to have made the Mai Tai despite their recipes being different. In the words of Trader Vic: “Anybody who says I didn’t create this drink is a dirty stinker.” We believe you Vic.

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