Life
by Kamran Rosen on March 24, 2014

Oldfashioned-cocktail

As I’m sure is the case with many of us, drinking started out as a Seal Team Six mission, where we were tasked with reaching our primary target (getting drunk) while avoiding the enemy (our parents), with the least amount of casualties. Habits of shot-gunning beers and chugging vodka then carried over into college, because A) it was fun and B) It was cheap.

But as we bros leave our four-year hibernations in bear-soaked basements, we must adjust our drinking habits to match the new working world. Which means that unless you want to sound like a frat pledge in front of your new boss, you’re gonna need a greater knowledge of cocktails than a “rum and coke.” Below are a list of 10 cocktails that’ll help you command authority like a Ralph Lauren Black Label suit (well, the one you bought half off at Macy’s).

1.) Old Fashioned

  • 2 oz bourbon
  • 2 dash Angostura bitters
  • 1 orange wedge, cherry, and tsp sugar muddled

One of the original, and most well-known cocktails, and Old Fashioned [seen above] adds class to a man like shaving with a straight razor. It’s classic, it’s stylish, and it’s called a goddamned old fashioned.  If you weren’t convinced watching OG gentleman Don Draper rock it on Mad Men, then you maybe you recognized it as the drink that playboy Ryan Gosling concocts for Emma Stone in Crazy, Stupid, Love. And if you don’t watch TV or movies and live under a rock, then just order the drink knowing your grandfather was ordering it before you were even part of a sperm count.

2.) Tom Collins

gin-collins

  • 1.5 oz gin
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • 1/2 oz simple syrup
  • Top with club soda and lemon slice

The Collins are a wide and diverse family of drinks, of which John and Tom are the best known members. Like the old fashioned, the Tom Collins is such a classic drink that there’s a type of glass named after it. If there was an Alcohol Hall of Fame, Tom Collins’ jersey would be up in the rafters.

For my money, its one of the most refreshing drinks out there, and you can order it with confidence at any bar, knowing that the only way they can’t make it is that they’ve run out of ice.

3.) Manhattan

  • 2 oz whiskey
  • 1 oz sweet vermouth
  • 1-2 dash Angostura bitters
  • Maraschino cherry garnish

Whether it’s been cultivated by culture, the fiery burn it gives you, or names like “Jameson” and “Jack Daniels” and “Wild Turkey”, whiskey is considered just about the manliest spirit out there. If you’re looking for a neat and simple cocktail to unwind after a cold winter work day, there’s nothing that hits the spot quite like a Manhattan by the fireside. Many recipes call for rye whiskey, I personally prefer bourbon.

4.) Whiskey Sour

whiskey-sour

  • .75 oz lemon juice
  • .75 oz simple syrup
  • 1.5 oz bourbon
  • shake, strain onto rocks

This drink is simple enough to make yourself, and malleable enough to make it how you like. It will serve you well if you’re trying to bartend at home with bottom shelf stock, and the ingredients are usually present in most homes. If you want to mix it up a little, ask the bartender to add a dash of egg white; the frothiness adds a really nice touch.

5.) French 95

  • 3/4 oz bourbon
  • 3/4 oz simple syrup
  • splash lemon juice
  • 1 oz orange juice
  • champagne

A darker take on the classic French 75, the 95 replaces a gin shot with  high proof brandy for those events when you can’t even wait to leave before you start forgetting it. Tasty and strong, the 95 stands for the kick from a 95-mm canon, which is pretty damn manly as far as names go. Disguised as an ordinary Champagne drink, break this one out at that wedding your girlfriend dragged you along to, and enjoy some male bonding time with your temporary best friend that you’ll never see again.

6.) Negroni

negroni

  • Equal parts Campari, sweet vermouth, and gin (typically 1 or 1.5 oz)
  • Orange slice garnish

For those of you who have not yet messed with Campari cocktails, I highly recommend you do so. The Italian aperitif takes some getting used to first, but once you’ve downed a few Negronis, the pavlovian dog in you will start to crave the bitterness, anticipating the night to come. Campari is also well known for its effectiveness at easing an upset stomach, which might explain why it was a favored drink by Orson Welles and James Bond…. or me whenever I’m hungover.

7.) Dark and Stormy

  • 2 oz Black Rum
  • 4 oz ginger beer (Gosling’s is recommeded)
  • Lime wedge

The name is as mysterious as it is appropriate. One of the lesser known cocktails on this list, a Dark and Stormy is great for a quite night alone at the bar. The ginger beer complements the dark rum well, making sure that the girl sitting next to you won’t be disappointed when she asks for a taste.

8.) Steam Roller

steamroller

  • 1 oz St Germain
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • 1 oz whiskey
  • 1 oz cherry liqueur
  • 12 oz beer

You’re in a predicament: it’s five o clock on Friday, and you want to get drunk as fast as humanly possible. However, the patio area just opened for spring at your favorite bar and you can’t imagine anything you want more than enjoying a cold beer outside. Enter stage right: the Steam Roller. The combination of liqueurs, whiskey, and beer will throw you into a boxing match with your liver in record speed, while still maintaining the integrity of that sweet crisp amber.

9.) Dry Martini

  • 2 oz gin
  • .25 oz  dry vermouth (1 oz for a classic martini)
  • Olive

You knew it was coming. From the moment Bond uttered “shaken, not stirred,” Martinis became embedded in culture as the first real cocktail that future men knew about. If you are going to order one, there are a few thing you you should know: “dirty” martinis have extra olive juice, Bond preferred vodka martinis, and cocktail purists believe you should always stir the drink as opposed to shaken because it “bruises” the liquor.  So armed with this little knowledge, don your three piece suit, and pretend that one day you’ll be half the man as Sean Connery.

10.) Mai Tai

mai-tai

  • .5 oz lime juice
  • .5 oz orgeat syrup
  • .5 oz curacao
  • 1 oz gold rum
  • 1 oz dark rum
  • Garnish with mint and lime

At the end of the day, after we’re all done trying to win the rat race and grow out our chest hair, every man wants nothing more than to relax on a beach, and not have a care other than making sure he didn’t forget his sunscreen. And so when we do get that precious luxury for a few weeks every year, we want to commemorate it by shedding off as much of our normal lives as possible. So kick on some flip flops, turn off your cell phone and  enjoy some Mai Tai’s on the beach in that one Hawaiian shirt you’ve been holding on to. You deserve it.

Kamran hails from the great city of Boston and is currently living the California dream in San Francisco. When he’s not gloating over the latest Celtics win, he’s researching the tastiest ways to get drunk through rigorous first hand research.

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