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Hollywood-Inspired Cocktails For Your Next Movie Night

Old Fashioned

Lights, camera…cocktail! The magic of Hollywood has always captivated audiences. Movies and TV shows often shape the way we live and trends are often dictated by what we see on screen. Over the years there have been many unforgettable screen moments that have made themselves a part of pop culture, and many of those have made their way into the everyday bar lexicon as well. Let’s take a look at 8 Hollywood-inspired cocktails that you can make to feel like you’re a part of your favourite movie or TV show. 

White Russian - The Big Lebowski:

This 1998 cult classic spawned many pop culture moments that have stood the test of time, (we still all believe that a rug can really tie a room together). But as Jeff Bridges as Jeff “The Dude '' Lebowski, embarks on escapades as a result of a mistaken identity, one thing that really became seared in our memories was his White Russian. Throughout the film, The Dude is almost constantly seen with a White Russian, a creamy coffee cocktail that you can easily recreate.

This drink serves two people.

Ingredients:

  • 50 ml vodka
  • 25 ml coffee liqueur 
  • 25 ml heavy cream

Method:

  • Fill a glass with ice cubes and pour over 50 ml of vodka.
  • Add 25 ml of coffee liqueur to the vodka.
  • Carefully pour 25 ml of heavy cream over the back of a spoon so that it floats on top.
  • Stir gently and enjoy!

Cosmopolitan - Sex And The City:

"Sex and the City" isn't just a classic; it's a cultural phenomenon. This groundbreaking series paved the way for women-centric stories in '90s cinema. The films that followed the beloved series further endeared fans to Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda, but their favourite drink, the Cosmopolitan, remained an iconic symbol. Often viewed as a girly drink, the Cosmopolitan delights with its sweet and citrusy notes. While its origins are debated, the recipe remains consistent: mix flavoured vodka with cranberry juice and Triple Sec to capture the essence of the city.

Ingredients:

  • 40 ml vodka
  • 15 ml or orange liqueur
  • 30 ml cranberry juice
  • 15 ml freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Ice cubes
  • Orange twist or lime wheel, for garnish

Method:

  • Fill a cocktail shaker with ice cubes and pour in 40 ml of vodka, 15 ml of orange liqueur, 30 ml of cranberry juice and 15 ml of fresh lime juice.
  • Shake until well chilled then strain the mixture into a chilled martini or cocktail glass.
  • Garnish with an orange twist or a lime wheel.

French 75 - Casablanca:

Every cinephile knows "Casablanca", the legendary romantic film set in a nightclub which tells the story of two former lovers who rekindle their feelings under challenging circumstances. And while the movie left an indelible mark on Western cinema, so did its most famous cocktail. The film introduced the French 75, a sweet and bubbly cocktail made with Cognac, Champagne, gin, syrup, and a hint of lemon zest. Its name pays homage to the French 75mm field gun from World War I, mirroring the film's era.

This drink serves two people.

Ingredients:

  • 30 ml gin
  • 15 ml fresh lemon juice
  • 15 ml simple syrup
  • 60 ml Champagne or sparkling wine
  • Lemon zest, for garnish
  • Ice cubes

Method:

  • Fill a cocktail shaker with ice cubes.
  • Pour in 30 ml of gin, 15 ml of fresh lemon juice, and 15 ml of simple syrup.
  • Shake well until chilled then strain the mixture into a chilled champagne flute.
  • Top up the glass with 60 ml of Champagne or sparkling wine.
  • Garnish with a twist of lemon zest.

Singapore Sling (Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas):

Thisild, psychedelic-fuelled adventure based on Hunter S. Thompson’s book of the same name has a slew of substances that play a role in the journey. One of the tamer ones is the classic Singapore Sling. A cocktail that blends gin, cherry brandy, and assorted fruit juices into a colourful, slightly sweet cocktail that perfectly captures the film's chaotic and hallucinogenic atmosphere.

This drink serves two people.

Ingredients:

  • 40 ml gin
  • 15 ml cherry brandy
  • 10 ml orange liqueur
  • 10 ml Bénédictine
  • 120 ml pineapple juice
  • 15 ml lime juice
  • A dash of bitters
  • Ice cubes
  • Pineapple slice and maraschino cherry, for garnish

Method:

  • Fill a cocktail shaker with ice cubes.
  • Pour in 40 ml of gin, 15 ml of cherry brandy, 10 ml of orange liqueur, 10 ml of Bénédictine, 120 ml of pineapple juice, 15 ml of lime juice and a dash of bitters.
  • Shake well until thoroughly mixed and chilled and strain into a tall glass filled with ice.
  • Garnish with a pineapple slice and a maraschino cherry.

Vodka Martini - James Bond (DR.No)

If there’s one line that always jumps unbidden into every movie lover’s mind when they think of martinis, it has to be the iconic, ‘shaken, not stirred’. No list of film cocktails would be complete without mentioning James Bond and his beloved martini. Mr. Bond's preference for a "Vodka Martini, shaken, not stirred" has become a symbol of sophistication and elegance in the world of espionage. This classic cocktail made its debut in the film "Dr. No" and has been a part of Bond's character ever since.

Ingredients:

  • 60 ml vodka
  • 10 ml dry vermouth
  • Ice cubes
  • Lemon twist or olive, for garnish

Method:

  • Fill a shaker with ice cubes.
  • Pour in 60 ml of vodka, and 10 ml of dry vermouth.
  • Shake the mixture well until chilled, then strain into a chilled martini glass.
  • Garnish with a lemon twist or an olive.

Old Fashioned - Mad Men:

Over in the world of TV, one character who’s as effortlessly suave as Mr Bond is Don Draper. The central character in the hit TV series Mad Men may have had some deeply sexist views on life, but he undeniably had impeccable taste in drinks. The Old Fashioned cocktail recipe calls for either rye whisky or bourbon, mixed with simple syrup and a few dashes of aromatic bitters. For a perfect serving, garnish the drink with an orange twist or maraschino cherries, or both.

Ingredients:

  • 60 ml rye whisky or bourbon
  • 1 sugar cube
  • 2 dashes of bitters
  • A few drops of water
  • Ice cubes
  • Orange twist and/or maraschino cherries, for garnish

Method:

  • Place a sugar cube in an Old Fashioned glass.
  • Add 2 dashes of bitters onto the sugar cube and a few drops of water to help dissolve the sugar.
  • Muddle the sugar cube until it's partially dissolved then fill the glass with ice cubes.
  • Pour in 60 ml of rye whisky or bourbon.
  • Stir gently to mix the ingredients.
  • Garnish with an orange twist and/or maraschino cherries.

Mint Julep - The Great Gatsby:

The roaring 20s were an age of raucous hedonism in sequined flapper dresses and Daisy Buchanan perfectly captured the spirit of the age. While more prominently featured in the novel than in either film adaptation, the Mint Julep still makes many an appearance in the movie as her signature ip. This cooling, refreshing drink is primarily composed of bourbon and has its roots in the southern United States.

Ingredients:

  • 60 ml bourbon
  • 8-10 fresh mint leaves
  • 15 ml simple syrup
  • Crushed ice
  • Fresh mint sprig, for garnish

Method:

  • In a Julep cup or glass, muddle the fresh mint leaves and simple syrup together.
  • Fill the cup with crushed ice.
  • Pour in 60 ml of bourbon over the ice.
  • Stir gently to combine the ingredients and frost the cup.
  • Garnish with a fresh mint sprig.

Bloody Mary - Once Upon a Time in Hollywood:

Quentin Tarantino's homage to Golden Age filmmaking, "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood," includes a variety of cocktails, but the most nostalgic may be Brad Pitt's character, Cliff Booth, sipping a neon-red Bloody Mary in a wood-panelled fern lounge. Bloody Marys have evolved since their simple vodka-and-tomato-juice origins. 

Ingredients:

  • 50 ml vodka
  • 120 ml tomato juice
  • 15 ml freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • A few dashes of hot sauce (adjust to taste)
  • A few dashes of Worcestershire sauce (adjust to taste)
  • Pinch of salt and black pepper
  • Celery stalk, lemon wedge, and olive, for garnish
  • Ice cubes

Method:

  • Fill a shaker with ice cubes and add 50 ml of vodka, 120 ml of tomato juice, 15 ml of fresh lemon juice.
  • Add a few dashes of hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce to taste.
  • Season with a pinch of salt and black pepper.
  • Shake vigorously to mix and chill the strain into a tall glass filled with ice.
  • Garnish with a celery stalk, a lemon wedge, and an olive.