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10 Classic Cocktails

Meet the timeless standards of the cocktail playbook. Mix up these classic adult beverages for your next party or home happy hour.

1) Martini (Gin, vermouth)

Sometimes made with vodka, this is a classic, clear, and very strong cocktail. Serve chilled in (you guessed it) a martini glass.


Classic Martini with Olive

Classic Martini with Olive | Photo by Meredith

Find more Classic Gin Cocktails.

2) Manhattan (Rye whiskey, vermouth)

Similar to the martini, but with a touch of sweetness. This 100-year-old cocktail can also be made with bourbon. Serve in a martini glass or a short tumbler--always chilled.


Classic Manhattan

Photo by Meredith

Find more Classic Whiskey Cocktails.

3) Bloody Mary (Vodka)

Usually served at breakfast or brunch, the Bloody Mary is easy to customize depending on how strong you like your drinks--and how much spice you can handle. Serve over ice in a tall glass with the vegetable garnish of your choice.


Bloody Mary

Photo by Meredith

Find more Classic Vodka Cocktails.


4) Margarita (Tequila, triple sec)

A sweet party drink that's easy to make in batches. Blend in some fruit for extra flavor. You can serve in special rounded margarita glasses or whatever's handy (serving in a mason jar is increasingly popular).



Photo by Meredith

Find more Classic Tequila Cocktails.

5) Old Fashioned (Whiskey)

A sweet, sophisticated cocktail that's simple to make and goes down smooth. Serve over ice in a short tumbler (also known as an Old Fashioned glass).


Old Fashioned Cocktail

Photo by Meredith


6) Mojito (White rum)

A refreshing Cuban classic made with fresh mint. Sweet and fruity on hot summer days. Serve over ice in a tall glass.



Photo by Meredith

Find more Classic Rum Cocktails.

7) Daiquiri (Rum)

An easy, sweet, and slushy blender drink. Serve in a chilled martini or margarita glass.



Photo by Meredith


8) Gin and Tonic

The good 'ol G&T is a dead-simple summer drink, and a good reason to stay stocked up on fresh limes. Serve over ice in a short tumbler.


Gin and Tonic

Photo by Meredith


9) Screwdriver (Vodka)

Also called vodka and orange juice, because that's all it is! Easy to make as weak or as strong as you like. Typically served at breakfast or brunch in a tall glass over ice.



Photo by Meredith

10) Gimlet (Gin)

A classy Gin and sweetened lime juice (Rose's is the most common brand). Also sometimes made with vodka. Serve in a martini glass or short tumbler.



Photo by Meredith

Carl Hanson

About Carl Hanson

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