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Entertaining
The 7 Best Cocktails That Hail From the South

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When people talk about American classic cocktails, the discussion usually turns into a debate about which coast made a more significant contribution, or which city—New York or Los Angeles—is the true cocktail destination. The South is rarely showered with the same love and admiration, even though the region is responsible for giving the United States (and the greater world) countless iconic libations. We think it’s high time to appreciate the South as a classic cocktail heavyweight, starting with these seven boozy belles.

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This fun and fruity cocktail from the 1970s and ‘80s is the best way to celebrate game day in retro style. Made with Southern Comfort, sloe gin, amaretto and orange juice, the Alabama Slammer is the signature cocktail of the Alabama Crimson Tide football team, so you’ll find fans slamming these back at every tailgate. Roll tide!

The Essentials

Southern Comfort
Amaretto
Orange Juice
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The original lore of this spritzy cocktail was that it dated back to pre-Prohibition days when it was created at the Old Seelbach Bar in Louisville, Kentucky. In the 1990s, bartender Adam Seger supposedly found the long-lost recipe for the blend of bourbon, orange liqueur, bitters and sparkling wine. Unfortunately, the story turned out to be a ruse and the drink was actually invented in the ‘90s. But no matter what decade it was created, it’s still undeniably Kentucky bred and makes excellent use of that Bourbon County liquid gold.

The Essentials

bourbon
Cointreau
Sparkling wine
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There are dozens of classic cocktails that call New Orleans home, but none are more famous than the Hurricane. Tall, boozy and oh-so delicious, it’s one of the most popular cocktails nationwide—it even has a glass named after it. The Hurricane is frequently made with inferior, incorrect ingredients outside of NOLA, so do the Big Easy proud by using the true mix of dark rum, passion fruit syrup, fresh lemon juice and a sprig of mint for garnish.

The Essentials

dark rum
Passion fruit syrup
Fresh Lemon juice
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This tiki mainstay was created at the Holiday Isle Tiki Bar in Islamorada, Florida, back in the 1950s. Dark and light rums, banana and blackberry liqueurs, and pineapple and orange juices merge in a tropical glass that embodies the easy-going, relaxed attitude of the South. One sip and you’ll be transported to warm beaches where your problems can wait another day.

The Essentials

Juice
Liqueur
Rum
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Perhaps the most recognizable Southern cocktail, the Mint Julep conjures images of seersucker suits and over-the-top Derby hats. Muddled mint, sweet bourbon and simple syrup get packed with crushed ice, and the thirst-quenching result will refresh you from the heat in no time. No wonder all of Kentucky sips it to stay cool at the racetrack.

The Essentials

Bourbon
Simple Syrup
mint
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No cocktail inspires more ire from bartenders than the labor-intensive Ramos Gin Fizz, a backbreaking cocktail that requires dry shaking for a full 12 minutes to create a pillowy blanket of egg white froth. But just because bartenders hate making them doesn’t mean this decadent New Orleans cocktail is any less satisfying. Shake one up to get a workout and an instant reward for your physical efforts.

The Essentials

London Dry Gin
Cream
Egg white
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Our forefathers could drink us under the table, but the same could be said of our dear first FLOTUS. Martha Washington loved entertaining at her Viginia estate where she would serve extra-boozy punches like this. It calls for dark and white rums, orange and lemon juices, orange curaçao, cinnamon sticks, nutmeg, cloves, and sliced lemons and oranges for garnish. While this recipe was actually created by Dale Degroff in modern times, it’s pretty historically accurate to the punch Washington would have served at Mount Vernon.

The Essentials

Citrus
Spices
Rum

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