The majority of cocktails use ingredients and pair flavors that are common and known to be great for drinks. We wouldn't necessarily call those drinks ordinary (many are extraordinary), but often our experiences allow us to taste a drink just by reading the ingredients and get a general sense of whether we will like it or not.
This list does not include those drinks, instead, we are going for the cocktails that make you do a double-take and try to imagine how and if they will work. Many will surprise you.
Our list is not going to be filled with completely outlandish drinks - no salmon vodkas, cough syrup, or burgers dripping grease into a Bloody Mary - you can find those elsewhere on the web and try them if you dare.
What we're going for here is the truly unique cocktail that is well-crafted so you can actually drink and enjoy it and, depending on your taste, a couple may even become new favorites. Most of these include one key ingredient that is not ordinarily found in drinks, while others include a fascinating combination that is nothing short of an experience.
This is more of an experiment in flavor to give the adventurous drinker new ideas and experiences to take with them into future tastings. We've tried each of these personally and, while there are a few that we will pass on if offered a second round, they are all palatable and interesting and may be more aligned with your tastes than ours.
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We'll start this list out with one of the few bacon cocktails that we have enjoyed and it comes from one of our favorite women in the bar business.
Natalie Bovis' recipe begins by infusing four strips of bacon into Knob Creek, then mixes the bourbon with her cherry-cinnamon syrup and ruby port. It is fantastic and demonstrates that you can be a bacon fanatic with good taste.
More Bacon Cocktails:
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The Root to Longevity Cocktail
How often have you seen the beet used in a drink? Probably not often, if at all, but it works and it works rather well.
In this recipe from Jason Walsh a sweetened beet puree steals the show and pairs perfectly with Plymouth Gin, lemon, and mint. It's a simple recipe and perfect for a fresh from the garden taste.
More Beet Cocktails:
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This squash drink takes a different approach and opts for a bourbon infusion of spiced and sweetened butternut squash instead of a puree. This creates a softer squash profile that works great with the whiskey.
The drink then adds maple syrup and two great bitters, and you may want to think about serving this one with a light brunch.
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Every now and then figs make their way into a cocktail, though it's not often enough to make most people notice. This cocktail by Judy Bronson proves that it should be used more often.
In The Marriage of Figaro, Bronson opts for the popular infusion route - again in bourbon - then adds more bourbon along with Cardamaro and allspice dram and the result is a perfect marriage of flavor that can quickly become a favorite.
More Fig Cocktails:Continue to 5 of 6 below.
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One reader calls this "...the most refreshing cocktail I've ever tasted!" and we find it hard to argue that eucalyptus is refreshing. The drink itself is simple: gin, syrup, lime, egg.
It is in the syrup where the eucalyptus comes into play and Humberto Marques not only provides a recipe to make your own, but now sells it by the bottle on TheBartist.com. Is the Eucalyptus Martini for everyone? Probably not, but it's worth a shot and your taste buds may surprise you.
More Eucalyptus Cocktails:
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Yes, each of the items listed in the drink's title are included in a single glass and it seems like this would be most the dream drink of most men.
"Barbecue" does refer to the sauce, Jack Daniel's sauce to be exact, which is mixed down into a BBQ water to make it drinkable. Once you have this special water, you'll add Maker's Mark, Evan Williams' Honey Liqueur, a hefeweizen beer, and fresh orange juice to create this grilling-worthy tipple.