Origin of the Classic Cocktails


It is always nice to have a little of everything and when it comes to a mixed drink, what can be better than cocktails? Cocktail is a mix of drinks, typically made with a beverage that is mixed with other ingredients. Cocktail is everyone’s favorite, but have you ever wondered how they originated? No? Well, let’s see how…

Bloody Mary – Though the origin of Bloody Mary is unclear because of multiple claims, we consider the earliest cocktail to have been invented is the Bloody Mary. Its invention involves a bartender named Fernand Petiot, who invented the drink while working at Harry’s New York Bar in Paris in 1921. Back then it was just pale tomato juice with vodka. Then he brought it to King Cole Bar in St. Regis hotel, where he added different seasonings like Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, Tabasco Sauce, lemon juice and celery salt.

Mai Tai – Mai Tai is an alcoholic cocktail based on light rum and dark rum with lime juice. It was originated in Oakland in 1944 invented by Victor Berjeron in his own hotel ‘Trader Vic’s, when some of his friends were visiting him. Carrie Guild, one of his friend said “Maitai roa ae!” which means “Out of this world!” Trader Vic’s rival Don the Beachcomber claimed that he invented this drink in 1933. But the DTB version of Mai Tai with more ingredients differs significantly from Trader Vic’s cocktail.

Black Russian – It is a cocktail of vodka and coffee liqueur served in an old fashioned glass. This combination first appeared in 1949, when Perle Mesta, the American ambassador of Luxemburg was hanging out in the bar at Hotel Metropole in Brussels. The hotel’s bartender Gustave Tops decided to make her a signature drink. To symbolize the cold war going on then, he made vodka blended with the darkness of coffee liqueur.

Sex on the Beach – It was invented in 1987 in Florida USA. A distributor selling his new product peach schnapps held a contest for bars. The bar with most sales would get a bonus of $1000 and the bartender with highest sales would get $100. Confetti Bar’s young bartender Ted mixed the product with vodka, orange juice and grenadine cocktail and started selling it. When asked what it is called he thought about the reason why people come in spring time – The beach and sex, so he named it “Sex on the beach” cocktail.

Mojito – It’s one of the most popular and the best drink. Mojito was born in Cuba in the 19th century when rum was poor in quality, the Cuban farmers mixed rum with lime, sugarcane juice and some mint leaves. From the farms it moved to the working class beaches and gained popularity as America’s favourite offshore cocktail, which was dolled up with sparkling water, ice cubes in tall glasses. But they believe it originated from a similar drink called ”El Draque” in 16th century which was given as a medicine to cure dysentery and scurvy in Havana. “Mojo” means a Cuban seasoning of lime used in flavouring.

Pina Colada – A drink made of rum and strained pineapple, is known as the National drink of Puerto Rico which enjoys its own holiday on 10th July every year as “National Pina Colada day”. Earliest known invention of this drink dates back in 18th century when Puerto Rico pirate Roberto Cofresi gave this drink to his crew members to boost their spirit, but its recipe died with him in 1825. Later, Pina Colada was claimed to have been invented in three places in Puerto Rico. In 1954, Ramon Monchito Marrero Perez created this cocktail with coconut cream called coco lopez. Ricardo Garcia of Caribe Hilton at the same time used to serve this drink in hollowed out pineapple. And Ramon Portas Mingot, a bartender in Barrachina Restaurant also claims that he invented it.

Old-Fashioned – Once known as the manliest cocktail, it is a drink made with a lump of sugar, angostura bitters dropped in lumps of ice with whiskey. It was invented in a gentlemen’s club called Pendennis Club in Louisville, Kentucky. This recipe was said to have been invented by a bartender at that club in honour of Colonel James E. Pepper, a prominent bourbon distiller in 1881.

Try these different cocktails and more at Murphy’s Brewhouse- the best microbrewery in Bangalore. So, cherish the origin, history and taste of your cocktails!