Manhattan cocktail

We’ve all had those nights where we invite the girls over, pooling our alcoholic resources and attempt to google the classic cocktails we have on a night out, the cosmopolitan, the martini (007 style), or the minty mojito- with varying degrees of success. We took this inspiration and decided to bring you the opportunity to go on a real cocktail course in mixology as part of our hen party offering at Spicy Hen. So if you’re interested in learning the cocktail craft, check out our various packages, but for now, we have decided to let you in on the secret to making three perfect classic cocktails.


The Manhattan

This recipe comes to you from the eminent mixologist Dale DeGroff, who has graced Rainbow Rooms in New York and Milk and Honey in London as well as writing a number of books on the art. He notes that the beginnings of the Manhattan is an excellent tale. Supposedly, it was invented in 1874, when a bartender at the Manhattan Club made a drink at the party of Jennie Churchill to celebrate Samuel James Tilden becoming governor of New York State. Supposedly is the important word here for there is refuting evidence from the historian David Wondrich, who said that Jennie was at that time in England giving birth to baby Winston. Either way, the Manhattan was made, a classic was born.
For this recipe you will need:

  • 2 ounces blended whiskey
  • 1 ounce Italian sweet vermouth
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1 Maraschino cherry, for garnish


Stir the whiskey, vermouth and bitters in a mixing glass with ice. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with the cherry.  As simple as that!


The Sorrentino Cocktail

This is a much younger cocktail, only invented in 2013 at the Hotel Vittoria Excelsior for Guido Fiorentino. It soon became the most requested at the bar, spreading to other hotels in the area. This is a simple recipe from Colin Peter Field, who is head barman at the famous Hemingway Bar at the Ritz in Paris that evokes hot Italian summers. Apparently it goes perfectly with sole in a butter sauce.


  •  4 cl Limoncello
  • 12 cl Prosecco
  • Lemons (cut carpaccio style)


Take a large white wine glass, add 4 ice cubes. Then add your Limoncello and Prosecco and garnish with the lemons.  Bellissimo!


The Vita Vini

This tipple was designed by 2009’s World’s Best Bartender, Aristotelis Papadopoulos, at Park Plaza Westminster Bridge. It’s the perfect fruity drink to make an ordinary summer evening a bit more special.


  • Handful of red seedless grapes
  • Fresh lemon juice
  • 50ml lychee juice
  • 25ml vodka
  • Sugar syrup
  • Sparkling wine and stir


Muddle the grapes in a large wine glass, add a splash of fresh lemon juice, 50ml lychee juice, 25ml vodka, a splash of sugar syrup and ice. Top up with sparkling wine and stir.

So there you have it, we hope you enjoy making these three perfect cocktails, make sure to tag us in your results on twitter and instagram!





Three Cocktails from Three World-Class Experts
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