The Factors Behind Our Current Cocktail Renaissance

Those who care about the taste of alcoholic drinks have noticed that newer and more upscale bars are serving cocktails that taste better than ever. What's happening? Dedicated mixologists are putting in the effort to elevate the art of the cocktail that had suffered from the 20th century.

One factor is the resurrection of lost ingredients. Take the example of the Aviation. Before Prohibition, the novel drink was lavender-colored from crème de violette. This liqueur was made from flowers, but America couldn't get it during the 1920s, and it fell out of popularity in France. The Aviation became a completely different drink until just the last few years, when importers began stocking obscure spirits from all over the world. That trend made 100-year-old recipes available to modern patrons.

Another factor is the quality of ingredients. Mid-20th-century innovations allowed bars to grab pre-packaged mixes that were shelf stable, required little expertise, and saved time. This efficiency led to smaller stocks of ingredients and cookie-cutter recipes that any new bartender could mass produce (I was one of those, as bartending is yet another job I once had). Bartenders now take pride in squeezing fresh juices and even concocting ingredients like orange bitters in-house.

Read about these and other factors that are spurring bartenders to produce better cocktails than ever, if you know where to find them, at Works in Progress. -via Metafilter 

(Image credit: © Erich Wagner (

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