3 Low-ABV Cocktails Your Customers Will Love
Most people love a good Margarita or Manhattan. But many standard cocktails add up quickly, and don't lend themselves to session drinking. Plus, many drinkers are looking to take a more moderate approach to alcohol these days.
That’s where the low-ABV cocktail comes in. By enlisting lower-alcohol ingredients such as vermouth, sherry, and liqueurs, you can drink a delicious cocktail without falling off your bar stool. These nine drinks provide plenty of flavor without as much punch, so you can meet your moderation goals or stay in it for the long haul.
With just an ounce of Campari bitter liqueur as the only alcoholic element in this cocktail, it's nearly as low-ABV as a drink can be—but every bit as delightful as one can get. The Campari is joined by rosemary muddled with honey syrup, plus Meyer lemon juice and an egg white, all shaken to produce a perfectly frothy and festive cocktail.
- Leaves from 1 small rosemary sprig
- 1 1/2 ounces clover honey syrup*
- 1 ounce Campari
- 1 1/2 ounces Meyer lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- 1 ounce egg white
- Garnish: rosemary sprig
*Clover honey syrup: Add 1/2 cup clover honey and 1/2 cup water into a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the honey is dissolved and the mixture is smooth. Allow to cool then transfer to an airtight container. The syrup will keep, refrigerated, for up to 1 month.
This underrated 19th-century cocktail is not merely easy to drink, it’s also incredibly easy to assemble. The Bamboo calls for equal measures of dry vermouth and dry sherry, plus a couple dashes of bitters. Stir everything with ice, strain into a coupe and garnish with a lemon twist. The combination of the two fortified wines creates a rich, herbal and complex cocktail that you can sip for hours.
- 1 1/2 ounces dry sherry
- 1 1/2 ounces dry vermouth
- 1 dash Angostura bitters
- 1 dash orange bitters
- Garnish: lemon twist
Add the dry sherry, dry vermouth, Angostura bitters and orange bitters into a mixing glass with cracked ice, and stir until well-chilled. Strain into a chilled coupe, and garnish with a lemon twist.
Made with equal parts sherry and vermouth, the Adonis is an easy-drinking, low-alcohol classic that pairs beautifully with tapas and other savory bites. It differentiates itself from the Bamboo (below) by calling for fino sherry and sweet vermouth, which creates a sweeter drink than its drier cousin. But there’s still plenty of herbal complexities and sherry nuttiness.
- 1 1/2 ounces fino sherry
- 1 1/2 ounces sweet vermouth
- Garnish: orange peel
Add the fino sherry and the sweet vermouth to a mixing glass filled with ice, and stir until well-chilled. Strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with an orange peel.