Check out Part One here for all the equipment you’ll need to get started!

With all that out of the way, let’s get into some recipes for cocktails:

The Sour

The sour is a great option for the occasional house party host, as all the ingredients are shelf stable and there’s a good chance you’ll have them in your cupboard right now.

  • Mix 3 parts spirit of your choice. This recipe will work for just about anything you’ll have at home, and is a great way to get rid of that weird bottle of spirit someone left in your house 6 months ago.
  • 2 parts lemon juice. While brands like Funkin sell bar quality lemon juice, a bottle you would find in your local supermarket tastes, in my opinion, exactly the same.
  • 1-part simple syrup.
  • An egg white (optional): while an egg white in the shaker is a way to get a foamier head on the sour, it isn’t at all necessary. If you want that foamy head but can’t have egg, try about 50ml of pineapple juice.

My personal recipe is 75ml super market brand Irish whiskey, 50 ml lemon juice and 25 simple syrup.

  • Add all ingredients to shaker. Shake well for roughly 7 seconds, then either double strain or dump into a glass, coffee cup, or bowl depending on if your flatmate did the dishes like he was supposed to on the cleaning rota.

The Daiquiri

Making the Daiquiri involves swapping the 2 non-alcoholic ingredients in the sour.

  • Mix 3 parts spirits of your choice (the classic daiquiri uses white rum).
  • 2 parts simple syrup.
  • One part lime juice. Lemon juice will work but lime juice can be found very cheap in your local wholesaler.
  • To make the Strawberry Daiquiri, the Daiquiri’s fun loving cousin who always somehow has money to go to Tenerife even though it only works part time, all you have to do is replace simple syrup with strawberry syrup. While you can buy this in a bottle, I recommend getting a punnet of strawberries at the end of the day when most supermarkets will sell fruit at a reduced price. Mash or blend your strawberries and add them to your simple syrup: in a day, your syrup will taste better than if it was store-bought.

My personal recipe is 75ml white rum (any brand will do), 75ml strawberry syrup, and 25ml lime juice. If making the classic daiquiri, use 50ml simple syrup instead.

Add all the ingredients to the shaker, shake well for roughly 7 seconds, then dump into a glass. If you own a blender, add all ingredients (rum last) with roughly a shakers worth of ice, and blend to get that classic Strawberry Daiquiri.

The Mojito

While the Mojito is considered a classic summer drink, its tart lime flavour means you can sneak in a lot more spirit (but you didn’t hear that from me).

Although the Mojito is most commonly served with crushed ice, I prefer the shaker method for budget pre-drinks. Just as your landlord likes smothering everything with white paint – because any other way takes too much time.

  • 25ml lime juice.
  • 25ml simple syrup (increase or reduce each by 5ml according to taste).
  • a few ripped mint leaves (picked up cheaply as a whole mint plant or stolen right out of your neighbour’s garden if you think making cocktails is about fun).
  • 50ml of white rum.
  • Shake roughly for 7 seconds then dump into a glass, or drink directly from the shaker if you’re partying solo.

If white rum isn’t your thing, replace it with vodka and add a dash of ginger ale to make a classic Moscow Mule.

The Big Ones

While making vast quantities of cocktails may look time consuming, this round of 2-pint cocktails can be whipped up fast.

Sex on the Beach

  • 100ml of vodka.
  • 100ml of peach schnapps or any peach flavour liquor.
  • One pint of cranberry juice (keep some tomorrow for a hangover cure).
  • One pint of pure orange juice.
  • Mix all ingredients into either a large jug with ice, or split ingredients amongst two pint glasses.

Mango Paradise

  • 100ml of vodka.
  • 100ml of malibu (or any coconut liquor).,
  • 2 full cans of Monster energy Mango Loco (for the non-caffeinated, replace with 1 litre tropical flavour juice from concentrate).
  • Mix all ingredients into either a large jug with ice or split ingredients amongst two pint glasses.

The Long Island Ice Tea (or as I call it, the cupboard clearer)

  • 25ml gin.
  • 25ml white rum.
  • 25ml tequila.
  • 25ml vodka.
  • 50ml lemon juice.
  • 1 litre of cola or diet cola of your choice.
  • Mix all ingredients into either a large jug with ice or split ingredients amongst two pint glasses.

With these recipes in hand, you have all the ingredients necessary for a cocktail party that will have your friends remembering you as a high society host. Just be sure not to tell them how cheap these recipes actually are…