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Want to impress your friends, put new meaning into a "Cocktail Party", try these recipes. Just select your preferred base ingredient and take it from there. There are also some non-alcoholic varieties listed if this is more your scene. Before you get started, however, here are some general tips you need to know -

  • Measure - provided the measure used is kept constant throughout the recipe, the finished cocktail will have the correct flavour, texture and colour.  Use small or large measure depending on the number of drinks required.

  • Shake - if the recipe indicates the drink should be shaken, put the ingredients together with plenty of ice into the shaker, shake rapidly with a vertical movement until the outside of the shaker is frosty.  Always strain the liquid, unless told otherwise.  NEVER shake fizzy ingredients, these are always added last, unless you want to redecorate the ceiling!

  • Stir - if the recipe indicates the drink should be stirred, add the ingredients to ice cubes in a mixing glass, stir with a long-handled bar spoon, and strain.

  • Blend - blend the ingredients together with the recommended amount of crushed ice but only for a few seconds otherwise it becomes weak and watery.

  • Fruit Juice - juice extracted from fresh fruit is the best, to extract as much juice as possible from the fruit soak for a few minutes in hot water before squeezing, or rub between the hands.

  • Twist of peel - using a very sharp knife, shave off strips of the zest (coloured part) of the peel leaving behind the white pith.  Twist a strip of peel over the surface of the drink, then drop the twist into the cocktail.whole and sliced lemons

  • To serve - always hold the glass by the stem or the base to avoid fingerprints and unnecessary warming of the drink.  Never fill the glass to the brim and remember to leave room for a garnish if one is to be added.

  • Crushed ice - wrap ice cubes in a clean, dry tea towel and bash with a mallet.

  • Glasses - almost any glass can be used for cocktails, however, as a rough guideline choose stemmed glasses for cocktails which are not served on ice (as these will stay cooler longer), tumblers for drinks on ice.  Short cocktails look best in traditional cocktail glasses, while goblet styles are generally used for drinks incorporating egg yolks.

  • Temperature - it is essential all cocktails are served very cold and, ideally, glasses should also be chilled.  They can be kept in the refrigerator for an hour or two or, alternatively, ice placed in a glass whilst the drink is being prepared will help to cool it.



To ease out a stubborn cork, soak a cloth in very hot water and wrap it around the neck of the bottle.  This should expand the glass and free the cork.

To open a bottle of champagne without it overflowing, hold cork and turn bottle.

Lost your corkscrew - insert a large hook or eye into the cork and use a stick, sturdy wooden spoon or similar to gently turn out the cork.

Carl J.


This tip comes with a strong warning - if you decide to do this 
PLEASE, PLEASE use it sensibly!



Back in Ohio the ADULTS (I was a kid back then!) would bore a hole in the top of the water melon and pour in a bottle of vodka!  Mind you, in my immediate family we are not "big drinkers," but, as the extended family would typically assemble for picnics and other celebrations, an entire watermelon would suffice for those who chose to imbibe!  Very refreshing if kept in an ice-filled tub.

Kathy Green



Brandy Based

Gin BasedA-BC-FG-NO-RS-Z



crashed car and drink bottles







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