A cocktail is only as good as how balanced all of its ingredients are, which is why pro bartenders can spend hours crafting a new recipe—measuring components like amaro or fresh citrus juice down to the quarter-ounce—to make the perfect sip. It's for this reason that I hold a special place for a classic cocktail that throws caution to the wind and yet somehow manages to provide a deliciously balanced drink with equal-measure pours of every single one of its ingredients.
Equal parts cocktails remind me of the people who, seemingly without effort, managed to get straight A's without studying, captained a sports team, and never had a bad hair day. "Must be nice..." I mumble to myself, all while wishing I disliked them... but I can't. Because guess what? They are also truly delightful to be around. (Of course they are.)
These equal-parts bevs are ones I order out regularly but also ones I don't shy away from making at home because of how little brain power they require. No fancy cocktail jigger on hand? No problem.
01 of 06
The Last Word
My obsession with green chartreuse hit new heights the first time I sipped this drink. Equal parts gin, that distinctly herbal chartreuse, Luxardo, and fresh lime juice make for a bracing refresher. If you are a mezcal lover, try making a Mezcal Last Word by using it in place of the gin.
02 of 06
The Paper Plane is a drink that shouldn't work, but absolutely does. Made with bourbon, Aperol, Amaro, and lemon juice, it's an absolute stunner. Little origami plane, optional. It's proof that Aperol can do more than "spritz." And, having a bottle of Amaro Nonino on your bar cart is never a bad idea—it can be enjoyed neat or on a rock as a simple digestif when you aren't whipping up this drink.
03 of 06
Corpse Reviver No. 2
If my corpse needs reviving after a night of drinking, I'm certainly not interested in precise measurements and fiddly-little drink recipes at 11 AM. This drink understands the assignment and keeps things simple with equal parts gin, Lillet blanc, absinthe, orange liqueur, and fresh OJ. I consider it an adult mimosa.
04 of 06
Blood and Sand
Scotch lovers rejoice, the Blood and Sand features the peaty whisky along with cherry brandy, sweet vermouth, and a brightening up from some fresh orange juice.Continue to 5 of 6 below.
05 of 06
50-50 Gin Martini
At its inception, the classic gin martini was an equal parts drink. Over time, the ratio of gin to dry vermouth increased to ever-boozier levels. Try the martini the old-fashioned way, made with equal parts dry vermouth and gin, along with a dash of orange bitters. It won't drink like the extra-dry (read: a vermouth washed glass) martinis we have grown accustomed to, but it just might become a new (old) favorite cocktail.
06 of 06
Need to whip up a batched cocktail for a crowd? Nothing could be simpler than pouring same-sized bottles of Campari, sweet vermouth, and gin together and giving it a stir. You might flash back to college days making Jungle Juice, but I swear it's so much better. Swap Mezcal in place of the gin for a smoky variation. A splash of water into the mix will account for the dilution that typically occurs when properly making a single negroni stirred over ice, but I won't tell anyone if you skip this step and just pour each serving over ice.