10 Cocktails Every Hostess Should Know

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When hosting a party our general rule of thumb would be to keep the drinks as simple as possible. Of course everyone has “that” guest with the special request. This means as a hostess it is best to know a few of these easy and classic cocktails to keep your guests happy!

1.Dry Martini

Knowing how to make a dry martini is like knowing how to build the foundation to a house. Once you master it, you’ll be able to build your martini resume into something truly impressive!


Cracked ice

2 1/2 ounces London dry gin

1/2 ounce dry vermouth

Green olive for garnish


In mixing glass or cocktail shaker filled with ice, combine gin and vermouth.

Shake well, then strain into martini glass.

Garnish with olive and serve.

2. Old Fashioned

This is such a fun cocktail! It was originally served at the Pendennis Club in Louisville, Kentucky and has been a gentleman’s staple ever since. A delicious variation on the drink is to swap out whiskey for gin to make a Gin Old Fashioned.


1 scant teaspoon simple syrup

2 dashes Angostura Bitters, plus more to taste

1 half dollar–sized slice orange peel, including pith

2 ounces good-quality rye or bourbon

1 maraschino cherry


In a rocks glass, combine simple syrup and bitters.

Fill glass halfway with ice, then stir until combined.

Add enough ice to fill glass. Squeeze orange peel over the glass, add the peel, and add whiskey.

Stir until everything is incorporated and the drink is thoroughly cold.

Garnish with cherry, swizzle stick, and straw.

3. Mojito

If you want a drink that will quickly transport you to a serene beach, this is it. The mint, rum and lime juice create a refreshing drink that will make anyone forget about the summer heat.


6 leaves of mint

1 oz fresh lime juice

Soda Water

1 1/3 oz white rum

2 teaspoons sugar


Muddle your mint springs with the sugar and lime juice. When thoroughly muddled and incorporated, fill a glass with ice and top the ice with the mint mixture.

Top with the soda water and rum.

Garnish with a sprig of mint leaves and a straw.

4. Margarita

This is an easy cocktail to make and it tastes delicious! You’ll say goodbye to pre-made margarita mixes once you see how easy and delicious it is to make your own!


1 1/6 oz tequila

2/3 oz Cointreau

½ oz lime juice


Rim your desired glass in salt and garnish with a lime wedge.

In a cocktail shaker, combine ice, Cointreau and tequila and shake until incorporated.

Pour over ice in your pre-salted glass and enjoy!

5. Manhattan

The beauty of a Manhattan is the freedom you have in choosing what sort of whiskey you use. Anything from rye whiskey to bourbon is fair game and just as delicious.


¾ oz sweet vermouth

2 ½ oz whiskey

1 dash bitters

1 maraschino cherry


Combine the vermouth, whiskey and bitters with 2-3 ice cubes in your desired glass.

Stir briefly.

Place the cherry in a in a chilled cocktail glass and strain your whiskey mixture over it.

6. Negroni

A classic aperitif for your next gorgeous dinner party, the negroni screams elegance. The best part is that it’s pretty tasty to boot!


1oz Gin

1 oz Campari

1 oz sweet red vermouth

1 orange peel


Stir into glass over ice, garnish with orange peel and serve over ice.

7. Gin & Tonic

This is an amazing and simple cocktail. It is the Jackie O of the cocktail world.


1-3 parts gin

3 parts tonic water

Lime wedge


In a glass filled with ice cubes, pour gin and tonic water.

Garnish with lime wedge.

8. Daiquiri

Another great summer cocktail! It’s classic, refreshing, sweet and my personal favorite.


½ (3 parts) oz simple syrup

1 ½ (9 parts) oz white rum

5 parts lime juice

1 Lime slice


Pour all ingredients into a shaker with ice cubes.

Shake well.

Strain into chilled cocktail glass.

Garnish with a lime slice.

9. Dark ‘n’ Stormy

It’s decadent dark rum paired with delicious, sharp ginger beer. What could be better?


3 ½ oz ginger beer

2 dashes of bitters

2 oz dark rum

1 lime wedge


In a glass filled with ice, add the dark rum and top with the ginger beer.

Garnish with a lime wedge.

10. Long Island Iced Tea

This cocktail is a very popular choice for summer gatherings. It’s cool, refreshing taste hides a very powerful kick, so beware when sipping!


1 oz vodka

1 oz Gin

1 oz white rum

1 oz silver tequila

1 oz triple sec

1.5 oz sweet and sour mix

Splash of Coke



Pour the vodka and gin.

Add the rum, tequila and triple sec.

Add the sweet and sour mix.

Add 8 ice cubes.

Shake it vigorously.

Fill your highball glass with ice, fill it to the top and strain the cocktail into your glass.

Save a little room for the coke, top the drink with it.

Drink or serve it, garnish with a lemon wedge.

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