Here are the top upscale drinks for when you’re looking to impress! These fancy drinks look (and taste) the part.
Looking to impress with your cocktail knowledge? Sure, everyone knows the good old margarita and Moscow mule. But if you’re out at a bar or making homemade cocktails, how can you take the party to another level? Here are the top upscale drinks that taste fancy and taste incredible! This includes classic cocktails from the 1880’s that fly under the radar, and modern cocktails that mix fancy liqueurs. Whether you prefer gin, whiskey, rum, vodka or tequila drinks…we’ve got you covered!
And now…the top upscale drinks to impress everyone!
The Boulevardier is a classic cocktail invented in the 1920’s. This upscale drink is the improved variation on a Negroni, swapping gin for whiskey. The sweetness of bourbon perfectly balances the flavor rich flavor.
Ingredients: Bourbon, sweet vermouth, Campari
When you need an upscale drink, there’s really nothing like a Pisco Sour! The way the pisco melds with the lime makes it bright, mellow, and distinctly magical. Want to add a fancy touch? Make a cocktail bitters design right on the cocktail foam.
Ingredients: Pisco, lime juice, simple syrup, egg white
The Corpse Reviver is a 1930's upscale cocktail with a humorous name: the strength of the drink was enough to bring a body back from the grave! This one is a fancy drink that's simple to make, and it always impresses guests. It's tart and zingy, with a hint of licorice on the finish.
Ingredients: Gin, lemon juice, Cointreau, dry vermouth or Lillet Blanc, absinthe
The French martini is an upscale spin on a vodka martini made with raspberry liqueur and pineapple juice. It might seem like a retro classic cocktail, but it was invented in the 1980’s by New York bartender Allen Katz.
Ingredients: vodka, pineapple juice, Chambord
Here's an upscale drink that flies under the radar: meet the Pegu Club cocktail! It’s a classic 1920’s drink invented at, as the name suggests, the Pegu Club. This fancy drink is sophisticated and refreshing, with a citrus and herbal finish.
Ingredients: gin, Cointreau or triple sec, lime juice, Angostura and orange bitters
This upscale drink is an an over-the-top impressive classic cocktail: the Ramos Gin Fizz! The impossibly tall frothy topping and tangy burst of lime, lemon and orange blossom water makes it taste just like a lemon meringue pie. Invented in New Orleans in the 1880's, the drink took whole 12 minutes to shake up back in the day.
Ingredients: gin, lemon juice, lime juice, simple syrup, heavy cream, orange flower water, egg white, soda water
Here's an upscale drink to impress rum drinkers: the Hemingway daiquiri! This spin on the Classic Daiquiri was invented in honor of the famous writer himself, Ernest Hemingway. It features sweet grapefruit to balance the acidity of the lime, and maraschino liqueur brings notes of sour cherry and almond.
Ingredients: white rum, grapefruit juice, lime juice, Maraschino liqueur
Here’s a boozy upscale cocktail that’s one of the greats: the Sazerac! It sounds even more fancy than ordering up an Old Fashioned. Instead of just whiskey and sugar, this one’s got a surprise element: absinthe gives a black licorice finish to each sip.
Ingredients: Cognac, rye whiskey, absinthe, sugar cube, Peychaud’s bitters
Here's a fancy drink that's simple to make, but sounds impressive! The French 75 is a classic cocktail invented 1915 at the New York Bar in Paris It’s tangy, bubbly, and makes every occasion more festive.
Ingredients: Gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, champagne
Here's an upscale drink with tequila...that's not the margarita. Meet the Siesta cocktail! This unexpected combination of tequila, Campari and fresh citrus juice is deliciously intriguing. Each sip is balanced and refreshing, with a sweet tart body and a hint of bitter on the finish.
Here’s an upscale drink invented by a fictional character. Meet the Vesper martini! James Bond created this drink in the 1953 book Casino Royale, and it lives on today. The magic ingredient is Lillet Blanc, a lightly sweet, vaguely floral fortified wine that brings life and personality into this drink.
Ingredients: Gin, vodka, Lillet Blanc
Here’s an upscale drink for the adventurous home bartender: the Last Word! This pale green gin sour is a classic cocktail that was all but lost to history. But with the revival of cocktail culture, this one’s come back strong. It's equal parts formula makes it easy to make and perfectly balanced.
Ingredients: gin, Maraschino liqueur, Chartreuse liqueur, lime juice
Here’s another fancy classic cocktail that flies under the radar: the Ward 8! This riff on the whiskey sour needs reviving, in our opinion. Where the whiskey sour can be on the sweet side, the Ward 8 is perfectly balanced and tart. It features rye whiskey, but it’s not overpowering: there’s just a hint of spice on the finish.
Ingredients: rye whiskey, lemon juice, orange juice, grenadine
Some cocktails are a cut above the rest: and this upscale drink is worth a taste. Ever tried a Golden Cadillac? This pale yellow after dinner drink blew us away with its creamy, complex flavor! The name sounds a bit 1950’s (and it is), but we think this retro cocktail deserves a place among the greats.
Ingredients: Galliano, creme de cacao, heavy cream
Here's a final upscale drink that’s classy and complex: the Martinez! This 1880's classic cocktail is in the spirit-forward cocktail family, a cousin of the Martini and the Manhattan. It’s balanced and just sweet enough, with notes of cherry and cinnamon, and a little spice at the finish.
Ingredients: gin, sweet vermouth, Maraschino liqueur, Angostura bitters
Looking for craft cocktails? These 10 Craft Cocktails feature homemade syrups and unusual or niche liqueurs to make stunning homemade drinks.
And when you’re in the mood…top easy drinks!
Once you’re done with these upscale drinks, want to try the exact opposite? We’ve got some great lists of the best cheap and easy drinks for when you’re feeling laid back instead. Here’s what to try:
- These 13 Easy Mixed Drinks are classics that are beyond easy to make
- Try our 2 Ingredient Tequila Drinks or 2 Ingredient Vodka Drinks for when you’re feeling supremely simple
- Short on cash? TRry these 12 Cheap Drinks
15 Upscale Drinks: Boulevardier & More
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 0 minutes
- Total Time: 5 minutes
- Yield: 1 drink 1x
The Boulevardier is a stunning classic cocktail! This easy three ingredient drink is the improved version of a Negroni, swapping gin for whiskey.
- 1 ½ ounces (3 tablespoons) bourbon whiskey
- 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) sweet or semi-sweet red vermouth
- 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) Campari
Ice, for serving (try clear ice!)
- For the garnish: Orange peel
- Combine the bourbon whiskey, sweet vermouth, and Campari in a cocktail mixing glass (or any other type of glass). Fill the mixing glass with 1 handful ice and stir continuously for 30 seconds.
- Add ice to a lowball glass, and strain the drink into the glass (or you can use a cocktail glass without ice).
- Use a knife to remove a 1″ wide strip of the orange peel. Squeeze the orange peel into the drink to release the oils. Gently run the peel around the edge of the glass, then place it in the glass and serve.
- Category: Drink
- Method: Shaken
- Cuisine: Vegan
- Diet: Vegan
Keywords: Upscale drinks
Let us know if you have any questions!