Jun 212010

Recently a dear friend and faithful reader sent out a Saucy SOS (see above), a Mixology Mayday, a Desperate Call for Cocktail Assistance.

And what was the emergency?  Well, he was in the throes of despair after trying unsuccessfully to mix himself a cosmo at home for the first time.   In all honesty I’ve not made nor ordered/drank a cosmo in several years.  For me they hearken back to the late 90’s (when Shaker One was just twelve*wink wink*).  I remember when they were my drink of choice at stylish uptown bars.  Well, me and every other 20-something gal trying to be cool.  Now, as with shoulder pads, I think enough time has passed that we can revisit this retro classic cocktail (wow, the 90’s are now retro?).  It is, after all, a tasty beverage and should not be besmirched by its association with a certain fashion harpy film that shall not be named.

“John”- we’ll call him that for the purposes of this post- “John’s” problem: limited home mixology experience meets unlimited online recipe options with conflicting ingredient ratios.  It has happened to the best of us at one time or another.  As Shaker Two and I have learned, out of many failures a great success can be born.  And we’ve mixed many abysmal beverages since starting the blog-sometimes wondering if the “recipe” authors bothered to sample their creations.  Early followers of the blog will recall many “salvage-tinis”.  I assembled the cast of characters.

I hunted a few trusted recipe sources and hit upon the following  to start with:

The Esquire Cosmo

Hello 1997.  I’ve just come out of the Wayback Machine! Very light in color and flavor.  Perhaps a bit sweet-which for many cosmo drinkers would be a selling point.  For me- 2 1/2 olives.  Your mileage may vary.

The Self Avowed “Perfect” Cosmo

First of all, a cosmo does not contain fresh mint.  Even as a garnish.  Cleverness for cleverness’ sake is not cool.  Mint at your own risk.

Pretty~ and it matches my kitchen!  As for the taste? A thousand times better.  The fresh lime juice makes a huge difference for me.  And the quantities here seem more balanced. The Howard Hughes in me loved the precision of the recipe (whatever you do, don’t add the ingredients in the wrong order!!!  Something terrible will happen I’m sure!!).  I garnished with lemon zest strings just for fun.  Go ahead and use a lime wedge or slice.  Still not sold on the inclusion of mint here.  This is really nice- maybe 3 1/2 olives!  I’d do this again.

I’m a firm believer in coloring outside the lines, so don’t be afraid to adjust the lime/triple sec/cranberry quantities to get your desired level of sweet or tart. I prefer the use of fresh lime juice over Rose’s, but that’s just me.

You could make a summer project out of discovering the perfect cosmo recipe for yourself…..so many options to choose from.  Small note:  I used regular vodka, but the inclusion of a quality citrus vodka would be nice (The Balcony Bar just happened to be out at the moment).  And some people prefer cointreau to triple sec.  Pick your orange liquor of choice, I won’t judge. Quick addendum- I just dashed a bit of Fee Bros. Bitters into the “Perfect” Cosmo and now I’m in love .  4 olives w/ bitters~!

Ok “John”- get out your shaker and give it a try!  Bonne Chance!


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