Virile simple drinks?
June 24, 2004 10:03 AM   Subscribe

What are some common manly cocktails? [mi]

I am not a big drinker (mostly by virtue of having been straight-edge during those formative years) and so many aspects of bar etiquette are lost on me. I am comfortable ordering beers of any variety, but let's say you sit down with a table of people all ordering cocktails, or you are at a bar known for their mixed drinks. I generally play it safe and go for a gin and tonic, but I would like to explore my options a bit. I don't need to impress anyone, but I would like to avoid any obvious "girly" drinks. What can one order in a strange bar and be fairly certain that you won't have to explain how to make it to the bartender, people will not smirk at your choice, and it will taste good?
posted by milovoo to Food & Drink (68 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
 
a martini.

(and avoid fruity drinks if you don't want to look like a girly-man.)
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 10:11 AM on June 24, 2004


Maker's Mark Manhattan
Ketel One Martini, dirty with two olives
posted by vito90 at 10:11 AM on June 24, 2004


sazerac.

note: most bartenders have no idea how to make a drink properly, seek out a nice hotel or a cigar bar.
posted by the fire you left me at 10:12 AM on June 24, 2004


Vodka Martinis, gin Martinis and Manhattans, but they're a bit strong.

Whiskey Sours are almost candy-like.
posted by Capn at 10:13 AM on June 24, 2004


How about a Mojito or a Caipirinha ? Avoid anything with bright colors.
posted by swordfishtrombones at 10:14 AM on June 24, 2004


also, try this:

Earthquake #1
Ingredients:

* 1/3 Gin
* 1/3 Whisky
* 1/3 Pernod

Mixing instructions:
Shake the ingridiens together and pour over in a cocktail-glass.
posted by the fire you left me at 10:15 AM on June 24, 2004


You will find some useful information on this topic in this Miguel thread from last year.
posted by Otis at 10:16 AM on June 24, 2004


IMHO, Crown & Coke is always a safe choice.

It tastes good, it won't destroy your perceptions too quickly and can be shouted in a crowded bar with very little chance of misinterpretation.
posted by grabbingsand at 10:16 AM on June 24, 2004


(Hrm. Maybe my idea is a bit pedestrian ....)
posted by grabbingsand at 10:17 AM on June 24, 2004


I like Jameson and OJ. (or whatever whisk(ey/y) you prefer).

When you get up to drinking doubles, that can get a little costly though.
posted by ODiV at 10:18 AM on June 24, 2004


"Vodka Martinis, gin Martinis..."

The only manly drink is a Martini. That means gin, a whiff of vermouth, and maybe two olives.

Yes I know Bond drank vodka martinis, but what do you expect for a pansy British agent...

O.K. Single malt scotch is alright, too, over ice.
posted by jpburns at 10:19 AM on June 24, 2004


O.K. Single malt scotch is alright, too, over ice.

You're kidding, right ?
posted by swordfishtrombones at 10:22 AM on June 24, 2004 [1 favorite]


Response by poster: Ok, right the martini is pretty classic, but what if you do want something fruity. Things more in the cocktail style. There must be a few more that won't cause gender confusion.

fire you left me - strange bar, not going to teach the bartender how to make it (which is what usually happens when I order something that sounds good on the web) Would Joe Average Bartender would know those?

Miguel's thread is useful, I searched ask.me but didn't think it would be a blue thing.
posted by milovoo at 10:23 AM on June 24, 2004


A brass monkey is half orange juice, half beer, and you can be sure any smirkers will be smirking at themselves for possessing a mere fraction of your piquant manly know-how.

Actually, what I do (I'm not a man, but I'm not a girly girl, either) is get a bourbon and branch made with one of those tasty small-batch bourbons (Baker's, Booker's, et cetera) and water. I like a lemon slice, but that may in fact be girly.

If you want something premade so the bar can show off its mad cocktail skillz, what about a salty dog or vodka sour?
posted by littlegreenlights at 10:23 AM on June 24, 2004


I really like an Old Fashioned every once in a while, but good luck finding a bar that makes a decent one.
posted by amery at 10:27 AM on June 24, 2004


As far as I'm concerned, any whiskey-based cocktail falls into the "manly" category. Even if it has a cherry in it, whiskey makes it masculine.
posted by mr_roboto at 10:28 AM on June 24, 2004


Rusty Nail (scotch + Drambuie)
7 & 7 (Seagram's 7 + 7up)
Maker's Mark + ginger ale (3:1 ratio or thereabouts)
slightly fruity: New Orleans Buck (rum + oj + lemon juice + ginger ale)
posted by Dean King at 10:28 AM on June 24, 2004


For mixed drinks, stick with the classics, as everyone has already noted: martini (there is a special place in Hell for those who drink vodka "martinis"), gin or vodka and tonic, manhattan, 7&7, or scotch and soda (a personal "don't-get-drunk-too-fast" favorite of mine). If you're interested in something a little less classic, but still manly, try bourbon or rye and coke, rye and ginger ale, or basically anything mixed with whisk(e)y of any sort.

Now I'm hankering for some sweet, brown liquor.
posted by uncleozzy at 10:31 AM on June 24, 2004


Dude, how about a White Russian?
posted by Quartermass at 10:31 AM on June 24, 2004


well, there's the sidecar. pretty manly, only slightly fruity. it's brandy, triple sec, and lemon juice.

maybe the mojito is more your speed? delicious, sweet, and still macho via the cuban provenance.
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 10:38 AM on June 24, 2004


A Harvey Walbanger might be a little froofy. It's obscure and/or hipster enough to still be cool, if you ask me.

Scotch with one ice cube.

A Dirty Mother has always seemed very manly to me, but perhaps that because it's my Dad's preferred of cocktail.
posted by maniactown at 10:42 AM on June 24, 2004


Dude, how about a White Russian?

Watch the beverage, man!
posted by adampsyche at 10:42 AM on June 24, 2004


Other things to know; Dont ask for a complicated drink when the bar is busy unless you are going to tip well.
A well made Martini should be prepared properly taking a bit longer than a simple vodka plus mixer.

Fruit juices out of a "bar gun": are generally going to be nasty ; try for bottle poured.

My current drink of choice ; Presidente Brandy, water/soda ; splash of coke over ice.

Although one that will open eyes in the bar is gin+vodka+roses lime juice. ( none of that healthy fresh squeezed :-) )
( That one came from a friends mother and grandmothers choice of drink, but i think it is pretty manly )
posted by stuartmm at 10:42 AM on June 24, 2004


equal parts special brew and merrydown cider.
posted by sgt.serenity at 10:42 AM on June 24, 2004


Response by poster: Dude, how about a White Russian?

I do like the taste of these, but I seldom trust the milk at the bars I seem to end up in.
Plus, the whole phlegm thing if you make a night of it.
posted by milovoo at 10:45 AM on June 24, 2004


Scotch and soda.
posted by Hackworth at 10:46 AM on June 24, 2004


Boilermaker: Fill shot glass with whiskey. Drop full shot glass into a glass of beer. Drink immediately.
posted by eastlakestandard at 10:46 AM on June 24, 2004


Response by poster: Boilermaker: Fill shot glass with whiskey. Drop full shot glass into a glass of beer. Drink immediately.

Does anyone ever really order those? I've just never seen it (keeping in mind - limited experience).
Perhaps it's a frat thing? or regional?
posted by milovoo at 10:51 AM on June 24, 2004


Beer. Alternatively, scotch, neat.
posted by yerfatma at 10:51 AM on June 24, 2004


soda is the only thing that is acceptable to put into scotch. No water. No ice. Although Rob Roy's are nice and Hemingway used to ask for half a lime to go with his scotch on supremely hot days. So I guess you can put stuff in there, just not water or ice.
posted by jmgorman at 11:00 AM on June 24, 2004


It must be a gin martini - order with a premium gin, always with olives. A drink with vodka and vermouth may be good, but it's not a martini.

If martinis taste a bit too medicinal, a Jack and Ginger (Jack Daniels and ginger ale) is a decent tasting while still manly drink. I'd avoid anything with Coke in it - screams a high school-ish "I dislike the taste of spirits so much I want to overpower them"

You should be able to see through any drink you order. Nothing with milk, nothing with Bailey's.

I love mojitos, but they may be viewed as girly, depending on where you are.

Any decent scotch or whiskey, but a real man drinks them "neat" - ice says "I'm a wuss"
posted by jalexei at 11:02 AM on June 24, 2004


Guys, scotch is soooo 2001. Bourbon is the new thing. Order bourbon, neat.
posted by rocketman at 11:03 AM on June 24, 2004


"The only manly drink is a Martini. That means gin, a whiff of vermouth, and maybe two olives.

Yes I know Bond drank vodka martinis, but what do you expect for a pansy British agent..."


Look at me! I'm snobby about the names people call the drinks they like! Ha ha, something people have drunk for 50 years is not a real drink because I read it on the Internet!!!

The Capn is a mean drunk
posted by Capn at 11:07 AM on June 24, 2004


One hour, over thirty posts and Miguel hasn't shown up yet. Wow. Here is another good cocktail thread.
posted by caddis at 11:10 AM on June 24, 2004


Bourbon? It's all about RYE.
posted by luriete at 11:18 AM on June 24, 2004


Maker's Mark Presbyterian:
Equal parts Maker's, ginger ale, and soda.
posted by greasepig at 11:24 AM on June 24, 2004


Another vote for Mojitos... If you can find it, use Havana Club rum not Bacardi. HC is much better.

In the whole Whisk(e)y/bourbon thing, I'll just say that they both taste like hell and I'd rather drink a good dark rum. over ice
posted by twine42 at 11:30 AM on June 24, 2004


After a few Martinis etiquette typically goes out the window. If you are worried about etiquette, or driving home, I would stick with something that has more mixer than hooch.
posted by caddis at 11:38 AM on June 24, 2004


Vodka (something decent) & Tonic: Yes, it comes with a lime, but remains manly. Refreshing and delightful, especially in Summer.

Also:

A shot of Makers Mark followed immediately by a pint of Bass or (if available) a nice draught of Belgian ale.
posted by aladfar at 11:41 AM on June 24, 2004


Double Jack Daniels on the rocks.

Or, as mentioned before, Manhattan or Martini. And if you ask for a Martini and they ask you what kind you want, get up and leave. If the place has a Martini menu, well then shame on you for even being there in the first place.
posted by Keith Talent at 12:16 PM on June 24, 2004


I'll second the rusty nail (scotch and drambuie) as an excellent choice. Its scotch, and therefor manly, but its mixed, so you can have ice, and all bartenders should be able to make one.
The godfather (scotch and amaretto) is another good choice for the same reasons
posted by Zetetics at 12:19 PM on June 24, 2004 [1 favorite]


Oh, and neither rusty nails nor godfathers come in those pansy martini glasses.
posted by Zetetics at 12:21 PM on June 24, 2004


I'm getting the impression people here think a traditional margarita is a girlie drink? It's tequila for fuck sake. Try serving a real margarita to your girlfriend and get back to me on it being a foo-foo drink.

1 1/2 oz Tequila
1/2 oz Triple Sec
1 oz Squeezed lime Juice
posted by y6y6y6 at 12:25 PM on June 24, 2004


Come on guys. It's summer, nothing is better than a really tall, really stiff gin and tonic.
posted by trbrts at 12:34 PM on June 24, 2004


"Come on guys. It's summer, nothing is better than a really tall, really stiff gin and tonic."

Gin & Tonic only tastes good outside on or near a beach. Never really thought of it as a bar drink.
posted by Keith Talent at 12:39 PM on June 24, 2004


Tequila sunrises are good (or, to mix it up, replace the orange juice with pineapple - i call it "the stynxno" but it's probably already called something else. bah. my ideas are always pre-thought by others.)

but, i'm all about tequila shots and/or body shots.
posted by Stynxno at 12:50 PM on June 24, 2004


tequila sunrise? why don't you order a dress to wear with that drink?

(but y6, i must concur that a real margarita such as you describe--and not some frozen boozeshake--is definitely a manly drink.)
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 1:18 PM on June 24, 2004


Good luck, though, getting a real margarita in a bar. They are as likely to offer you some frozen strawberry thing which maybe-might-sorta have tequila in it.
posted by uncleozzy at 1:33 PM on June 24, 2004


Sazerac's are a great cocktail, but really uncommon outside of New Orleans. Don't bother unless the bartender really knows his/her stuff.

Alternative to G&T: Dark and Stormy - dark rum and ginger beer.
posted by turbodog at 2:35 PM on June 24, 2004


Does anyone ever really order those? [boilermakers] I've just never seen it (keeping in mind - limited experience).

Yes, I have.

Perhaps it's a frat thing?

You may not be too far off here, as I've only ever done it or seen it done at bars in the general vicinity of a college campus.

As to the original question, let me take a different tack and suggest that it is at least as much one's attitude that makes a drink "girly" or not as the drink itself. I offer the following real-life conversation as evidence.
Scene: large group at a casual restaurant, mostly guys with a few girls. In this dialogue, "A" and "C" are male; "B" is female but definitely not a "girly girl."

Waiter brings out the drinks we ordered: several beers and one reddish-purple cocktail.

A: OK, who ordered the frou-frou drink?
B (as the waiter places the cocktail in front of her): It's a vodka cranberry, bitch.
C: Doesn't sound so frou-frou now, does it?
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 3:08 PM on June 24, 2004


Gimlets (on the rocks) made with good gin are awesome, but sometimes they put too much rose's or lime in them, but I like the taste of gin so Beefeater or Tanqueray on the rocks with a lemon or lime is just as good IMO. I also like Maker's Mark or Wild Turkey (or any decent bourbon) on the rocks.
posted by drobot at 3:20 PM on June 24, 2004


A good rule of thumb for determining if a drink is manly or not: manly drinks (even if they have other names) can be described as & . Jack&Ginger, Rye&Seven, Scotch&Soda.
posted by jacquilynne at 3:32 PM on June 24, 2004


Bloody hell. Used gt and lt signs, duh. What that said was can be described as [insert alochol here] & [insert mix here]
posted by jacquilynne at 3:39 PM on June 24, 2004


If you want it a little sweet, and you want to pace your drinking, rye or bourbon w/ ginger, Scotch/Rye/Bourbon on the rocks or with soda if you don't like sweet. Gin/Vodka-n-tonic is manly enough. Martini, Manhattan, Rob Roy (Manhattan w/ Scotch) are all good. Developing a preference for a brand of whisky sounds smooth, while developing a preference for a brand of vodka doesn't (ymmv).
posted by theora55 at 4:06 PM on June 24, 2004


Here's a tip I learned observing a friend at the best bar in connecticut: If your citron and sour is getting you called a girl, throw the gristle leftover from your steak in there. Not sure if it makes it any less girly, but it's a fairly good distracter.
posted by duckstab at 4:16 PM on June 24, 2004


Coming in late...

well, there's the sidecar. pretty manly, only slightly fruity. it's brandy, triple sec, and lemon juice.
Agreed, but watch that the bartender doesn't rim the glass with sugar, which instantly takes it from manly to pansy.

Dude, how about a White Russian?
I do like the taste of these, but I seldom trust the milk at the bars I seem to end up in.

Try a Russian Quaalude: equal parts vodka, bailey's and kahlua, with a splash of Frangelico. Shaken and served over rocks. Don't let the bartender put milk in it, as they often (incorrectly) try to do.

Boilermaker: Fill shot glass with whiskey. Drop full shot glass into a glass of beer. Drink immediately.
Does anyone ever really order those? I've just never seen it (keeping in mind - limited experience).
Perhaps it's a frat thing? or regional?

My (college/fraternity) friends and I have tried it a couple of times. Much more popular, however, are Irish Carbombs and Jaeger bombs, both of which follow similar routines. Mmmmmm, Carbombs.

soda is the only thing that is acceptable to put into scotch. No water. No ice.
Wrong. Plain and simple. The only thing acceptable to put into a good scotch is water, and just a wee dram at that. From the Scotch Malt Whisky Society of America website: Malt whisky ought, in the opinion of most knowledgeable drinkers, to be taken by itself or (preferably) with the addition of a little still water. The water and alcohol react in some way that slightly raises the temperature of the whisky ( i forget if that's exothermic or endothermic), releasing more flavor. The water also neutralizes the alcoholic bite, which is particularly important if drinking cask strength malts. This allows you to taste more of the real flavors of the malt, as too much alcohol numbs the taste buds.

Personally, I favor Gin and Tonics typically, but that's mostly motivated by budget, since I don't mind shitty gin as much as I mind other shitty liquors.
posted by rorycberger at 5:03 PM on June 24, 2004


Oh, and another Whisky fun fact: The manliest of manly Scotches, those from the Isle of Islay, tend to be favored more by women than men in taste tests. For those that don't know, Islay malts tend to be very smoky, peaty, salty, medicinal and all around strong in flavor.
posted by rorycberger at 5:15 PM on June 24, 2004


I second swordfishtrombones: mojito or caipirinha. (Outside of the obvious suggestions everybody's making: g&t &c.)

rorycberger: 'Scuse me? Every Islay fan I know (including myself) is male and proud of it. Och aye! But it's true that adding a bit of water improves a glass of scotch.
*goes off to pour himself a Bowmore*

Has Miguel taken the pledge?
posted by languagehat at 6:08 PM on June 24, 2004


Random thoughts:
- Caipirinha! Caipirinha! Caipirinha!
- Rusty Nail (scotch + drambuie)
- Bloody Mary, aggressively seasoned
- White Lady (gin + cointreau + lemon juice)

But really, why the concern for manliness? If you're a man, and you drink it, it's manly. You can always beat the shit out of people who say otherwise.

Seriously, if other men smirk at your choice, you have a golden opportunity to demonstrate your coolness and indifference by observing that you prefer to drink something that tastes good. You can then offer a sip to an appreciative woman and leave the deflated sneerers to contemplate their sour and nasty penance drinks.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 7:35 PM on June 24, 2004


Yes, the diehard fans of Islay malts, and Scotch in general, tend to be men. I guess I should have more clearly specified that I am basing this on a quick introductory tasting "class" I went to while in Scotland. According to the "teacher," among first-time tasters, women typically favor Islays more than men and this was true in our group. Obviously, this was a very small collection of choices, so maybe he was just saying that women like that Islay (bowmore 10, IIRC), but this guy seemed to know his stuff all in all, so I figured it was semi-universal.
posted by rorycberger at 7:39 PM on June 24, 2004


It's thanks to Metafilter that I'm a Mojito fan. I'll second (third? fourth?) the 7 & 7, too.

One of the bands I play with prefaces each set of music (usually two, sometimes three a night) with a Jager Bomb: A shot of Jagermeister dropped into a glass of Red Bull.
posted by emelenjr at 9:49 PM on June 24, 2004


Vodka tonic, no lime. Ketel One if you're particular about your vodka, but in that case dispense with the tonic.

If you don't trust the milk, there's always the Black Russian.

Gin rickeys are good, if you like gin.
posted by IshmaelGraves at 10:56 PM on June 24, 2004


There's nothing girly about a double Ketel and cran in a pint glass.

And consider the Zen aspect - while the vodka is killing your liver, the cran is boosting your kidneys. It's all about balance.

I was drinking said libation in a local Irish pub - local both because it's right next door, as well as in that it's a relative oasis, hosting the neighborhood regulars amidst a sea of bars catering to Jersey trash. Bunch of little frat assholes come in and order vodka and Red Bulls. The bartender has worked long enough in said occupation to develop the hardcore hatred of humanity that the job engenders, so the corners of my mouth curl up as I hear him inform them that the drinks are $15 each (whereas regular cocktails typically top out at $6). They decide to go for it anyway, and as the bartender starts making the drinks, one of the fratboys notices my "reddish-purple cocktail" and the following conversation ensues (in its entirety):

fratboy: What's that?
me: Ketel and cranberry
fratboy: Ketel and cranberry? That's for people who can't handle real drinks.
me: What are you drinking?
fratboy: Ketel and Red Bull?
me: Red Bull? That's for people who can't handle real drugs.

Now I ask you, was that girly?
posted by coolgeek at 11:05 PM on June 24, 2004 [9 favorites]


Get whatever sounds like it will taste the best, and a side order of character.
posted by biffa at 2:32 AM on June 25, 2004 [1 favorite]


One hour, over thirty posts and Miguel hasn't shown up yet. Wow.

I guess that has something to do with yesterday's Euro2004 match of Portugal against England...
posted by swordfishtrombones at 3:16 AM on June 25, 2004


I was all set to post a rant about the whole "manly/girly" thing, wherein I was going to say that it's unmanly to be concerned what other people think about you. Note that I didn’t say it was girly, feminine or female; just unmanly. In my opinion, men know who they are and what they like, and don't care what anyone else has to say on the subject.

But it seems that i_am_joe's_spleen has said everything I wanted to say on the subject. Also, far more eloquently and succinctly, I might add.

So, I life my drink to you, joe's_spleen. It's fruity, colorful, and has one of those silly little umbrellas in it.

*on preview*

biffa gets a salute, too!
posted by Irontom at 4:14 AM on June 25, 2004


Try an Akira:

60ml gin
10ml elderflower cordial
1 inch piece of cucumber, peeled and cut into small chunks
3 kaffir lime leaves, cut into thin strips
ginger beer to top

In a tumbler glass, muddle the cucumber, kaffir lime and elderflower cordial.
Half fill the glass with crushed ice and stir well.
Fill remaining glass with crushed ice and top with ginger beer.
Garnish with a slice of cucumber.

Otherwise, there's the Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster:

Old Janx Spirit (substitute 45ml Everclear)
Sea water from Santraginus V (a splash of tonic)
Arcturan Mega-Gin, properly iced (three shots of Gordons 47.3% London Dry from the freezer)
Fallian marsh gas (run through a bulb of NO2 - you still have that Soda Stream, don't you?)
Qualactin Hypermint extract (float a measure of creme de menthe over the back of a silver spoon)
Anglolian Suntiger tooth (add a Berocca)
Sprinkle Zamphour (use camphor crystals)
Add an olive (add an olive)

Voila - an effervescent, citrus - herbal - minty opalescent green drink that'll land you on your arse in a minute flat. Drink...but...very...carefully... Weighing in at just 225ml (about a cup), it contains around 120ml of ethanol, or the equivalent of seven standard drinks. You can get it down in a couple of swallows - the lemon slice follows shortly after.

Well, you did say 'a strange bar'...
posted by obiwanwasabi at 5:57 AM on June 25, 2004 [5 favorites]


Response by poster: I'm glad I asked, the opinions vary more than I would have predicted. Pimms sounds great, I just need to find a bar that serves it. I also have to test out ordering sidecars and old-fashioneds more. Thanks for all the info.

Also, someone mailed me a column from the Morning News, that I read before but had forgotten, good stuff.
posted by milovoo at 8:43 AM on June 25, 2004


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