Cocktails come in all shapes and sizes, and half of the fun of ordering a round during happy hour at Clapham Junction is the sheer theatre of it all.

You get smoke, sparklers, fire, all sorts of wild and wonderful colours and aromas that can carry you pretty much anywhere in the world.

It’s often easy to forget about the classics, but without them, many cocktails simply would not exist. Often innovation comes on the back of the genius of the past.

The most famous cocktail book in history, The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks by David Embury, mentions six drinks that are the base that many other cocktails are built on.

 

Daiquiri

The classic combination of high-quality Cuban rum, lime juice and syrup is the foundation of a lot of fine cocktails, including the Encore and to a degree the Mojito.

 

Jack Rose

Not seen as much any more due to its use of the rather old fashioned applejack spirit, which is essentially an apple brandy, mixed with lemon juice and grenadine. It tastes like a tart apple lemonade.

 

Manhattan

The ever-reliable mix of classic bourbon whiskey with vermouth and bitters is itself a symbol of sheer art deco class.

 

Martini

The Martini is such an iconic drink that it endures even today with drinks like the Porn Star Martini, which substitutes the traditional gin for vodka.

 

Old Fashioned

A very strong whiskey drink, but so many whiskey cocktails use the principle of a lot of whiskey, syrup and bitters to make some exceptionally fantastic if strong concoctions.

 

Sidecar

The sidecar proved the power of orange in a cocktail, with so many coolers expanding on the delicious citrusy taste.