The French Martini is neither French nor a Martini—but it is classically served in a Martini glass (we opt for a coupe for good reason). Invented at Keith McNally’s now-closed Pravda in New York City during the cocktail revival of the 1980s, the drink next appeared in 1996 on the menu at his iconic French brasserie Balthazar, which is known for its bustling Soho lunch scene and hoards of daily tourists. The linchpin ingredient in this pink and fruity concoction is Chambord, a French liqueur made from black raspberries, honey, vanilla and herbs. While there aren’t a ton of classic cocktails made with Chambord, you can experiment by using it in place of raspberry liqueur or mixed in an indulgent chocolate raspberry Martini. The simple mix of vodka, pineapple and the liqueur in the French Martini is sweet but not saccharine, especially if you use high-quality juice. While pressing your own pineapple juice is ideal, it’s not necessary if you don’t have the time or patience. Simply grab a four-pack of those little Dole cans and go to town. The French Martini is delicious to drink anytime of year, whether you’re sipping it by the pool, serving it as an aperitif at a dinner party, or whipping up a big batch for your next potluck. Any vodka will do, but make sure you use a quality bottling—an inferior spirit will definitely shine through and lower the tastiness factor. If you’re not sure where to start, we recommend Reyka, Absolut Elyx and Stolichnaya.
Mix it Up
Recommended Vodka: Industry Standard, Absolut, Tito’s, Stolichnaya
There’s more than one way to enjoy Sex On The Beach—the cocktail, that is. Traditionally, the summertime staple is made with vodka, peach schnapps, orange juice, cranberry and Chambord. Invented in 1987 during Spring Break (surprise!) in Florida, the cocktail was the product of a competition between bars over who could sell the most peach schna...