Skip links

Everything about cocktails

Popular all over the world, cocktails are the result of delicious mixes of strong alcoholic drinks, tasty fruit juices and other unusual ingredients. Even though some bartenders have taken their preparation to the level of art, there is now the Automatic Cocktail Machine by Dr Drink with preset recipes that help you get tasty cocktails, perfect to liven up any party. But have you ever wondered how cocktails came to be?

A brief look into the history of cocktails…

 

A cocktail is, of course, a type of mixed drink, typically containing a combination of alcoholic drinks, juices, and other flavorings.

The official history of cocktails starts around the beginning of the 19th century. The first known use of the word „cocktail” was in 1803 in an article from the Farmer’s Cabinet (Amherst, New Hampshire, April 28, 1803).

The prohibition that began in 1919 in the US (a time when alcohol was prohibited, believe it or not!) led to the establishment of many illegal alcohol factories. In many cases, the drinks produced tasted awful and were even poisonous.

Prohibition led to a huge illegal alcohol industry run by US organized crime gangs.

At the same time, bars, restaurants and clubs that sold cocktails  became very popular. Bartenders often mixed alcohol with a number of other ingredients, such as juices, both to hide it from the police (at least in appearance) and to give it a different taste.

Inevitably, mixed drinks and cocktails grew in popularity.

After prohibition ended in 1933, bartenders were free to experiment with spirits and liquors, and this is the beginning of cocktails.

According to David Wondrich, the oldest cocktail recipe dates back to 1831. A certain Captain J.E. Alexander creates a mixture of gin, brandy or rum to be mixed with water and flavored with sugar and nutmeg. The first published bartender and cocktail guide was THE BAR-TENDERS GUIDE by Jerry Thomas in 1862.

Where does the name “cocktail” come from?

 

The origin of the word „cocktail” is uncertain. There are two common variants about the origin of the term. The first is related to Antione Peychaud, a pharmacist from the French quarter of New Orleans, who developed the recipe for the oldest cocktail, the „Sazerac”, a bitter recommended as a tonic, which was served in small cups, called „cocquetier”. Some historians say that this term, „cocquetier”, would be the origin of today’s word „cocktail”. The second option is related to semantics – the two components of the word, „cock” and „tail”, which in translation means „rooster’s tail”, an expression that leaves room for several interpretations aimed at the vivid and diverse coloring of the feathers that resemble mixed drinks.

The most used ingredients in the preparation of a cocktail

 

Depending on the cocktail you want to prepare, choose your ingredients and stock up accordingly. Remember that your goal is to create a perfect tasting cocktail, so don’t compromise on the quality of the drinks used.

Drinks used in cocktails

Most cocktails or long drinks are based on at least one alcoholic drink, whose strength is softened by juices. The most often used are colorless spirits, such as vodka, gin, tequila or white rum, but also colored ones (such as whiskey, brandy or dark rum) are used to prepare many popular cocktails.

Often, the flavor of the mixture is also given by various types of liquor. Coffee liqueurs, chocolate liqueurs, cream liqueurs, but also various fruit liqueurs (bananas, oranges, peaches, lemons, cherries, pears, passion fruit, etc.) can be used. Bitter can also be used in various combinations.

When it comes to mixes, creativity knows no bounds so feel free to choose what you mix.

Non-alcoholic ingredients

The fresh taste of a cocktail is usually given by a certain type of juice. Both carbonated juices and natural fruit juices can be used. In the case of the latter, the quality of the product can make the difference, because a cheap commercial juice will immediately change the taste. It is recommended to always choose quality brands, but you will get the best results by squeezing the fruit.

Also, fruit syrups are used to give the drink an extra sweetness and a pleasant appearance. The taste can also be supplemented with sugar in the form of cubes or even with various spices and herbs.

Lastly, there’s one basic ingredient you shouldn’t be missing from your freezer when you’re throwing a cocktail party: ice cubes.

Interesting facts about cocktails

 

  • The modern cocktail was invented in the USA.
  • The first cocktail recipe book was published in 1862.
  • The Old Fashioned is the most popular cocktail in the world.
  • National Cocktail Day is March 24.
  • The most expensive cocktail in the world is the Diamond Is Forever Martini at the Ritz-Carlton Tokyo features a one-carat diamond alongside Absolut Elyx Vodka. This martini costs ¥2 million, or about $18,500.
  • The most complicated cocktail for a bartender to make is the Commonwealth Cocktail which contains 71 ingredients to honor the 71 countries that compete in the 20 Commonwealth Games.
  • The most cocktails in one minute were made by Sheldon Wiley, a number of 18 to achieve the world record in 2013. He also managed to make 1,905 cocktails in one hour in 2014.
  • The Piña Colada was invented in 1954 at the Beachcomber Bar by Ramón „Monchito” Marrero and is the national drink of Puerto Rico.
  • The highest cocktail bar is on the 118th floor of the ICC Tower in Hong Kong, and is on a rooftop called OZONE.
  • Pench’s Bar in Bulgaria had the largest menu with 2,014 cocktails, but has now closed.
  • An attempt to set the Guinness World Record for the world’s most expensive cocktail was thwarted when a customer slipped and broke the $77,000 brandy bottle.

 

We hope you enjoyed our journey through the world of cocktails. And if you want to enjoy a perfect cocktail, try the DrDrink Cocktail Dispenser. The Cocktail Machine was designed in a way that anyone can mix a perfect cocktail in a few seconds, perfect shots with the „speed of light”, but also a help for professional bartenders in locations with a large flow of customers where it brings more speed and control, integrating perfectly.