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Old Fashioned

Pretty much the OG cocktail formula—spirits (in this case, whiskey, whether rye or bourbon), sugar, bitters, and a diluting agent—but with club soda in place of regular water for a little extra lift. And a zesty orange twist for garnish.

Moscow Mule

Knowing what we now do about the equine origins of the word cocktail, the “mule” in this ginger-heavy drink’s name packs a double meaning (although the theory is just that it refers to the kick of the aromatic key ingredient). Bonus points if you serve it in the iconic copper mug, but it tastes just as good from any other glass.

Frozen Ginger Peach Margarita

Here’s another gingery pick, but one that’s far removed from the original cocktail. Can you imagine Dr. Stoughton’s reaction to a frozen margarita machine and its gloriously slushy, sweet output? Not a trace of bitters in sight, but plenty of tequila.

Chardonnay Coverup

Another fantastic tidbit from the Saveur article by Wondrich is that George Washington, while arranging the surrender of New York by the British, hosted a sort of cocktail hour at which he offered wine and bitters. We still love wine cocktails—and this one combines oaky chardonnay with bittersweet Aperol, which maybe even our first president would’ve enjoyed.

Perfect Martini

Even more stripped-down than the original cocktail, the martini is a more modern—yet equally timeless—creation, strictly for lovers of gin and vermouth. And olives, in some cases.