Holiday Gift Guide

Looking for an angle when writing about a cocktail is for me the most time consuming--and sometimes agonozing--aspect of blogging.  Well, today I’m dispensing with the longwinded introductions about the reasons for talking about a particular cocktail, and instead featuring a cocktail for no reasons other than it’s deliciousness, and the fact that it's a drink I'm mixing for myself on a fairly regular basis.  It's my cocktail of the moment, and there's a decent chance it'll become yours too.

The cocktail is called the Coronation, and it is one of several cocktails bearing the same name, each with a completely different set of ingredients.  The recipe below is probably the first of the Coronations created, and also one of the best.

The Coronation
1 oz. applejack
1 oz. sweet vermouth (I used Vya)
1 oz. dry vermouth (Dolin works nicely)
1 dash (oh what the hell, a splash) apricot liqueur (I used Rothman & Winter)

Tools: barspoon, mixing glass, strainer
Glass: chilled cocktail glass or coupe

Place everything in mixing glass with cracked ice and stir until well mixed and chilled; strain into your glass.  A garnish isn’t necessary in this drink, but I chose to garnish with a calvados-soaked pomme (mini apple).

I treat the apricot liqueur in this drink as a variable that can and should be adjusted to your preference, while treating the remaining items as well-balanced constants. So while I use a healthy dash, feel free to use the amount that suits your palate.

This iteration of the Coronation makes its first print appearance in a 1931 cocktail recipe book called Old Waldorf Bar Days by Albert Crockett. The book was a recipe-filled chronicle of the history of the original Waldorf Astoria built in 1893, when it was located where the Empire State Building now stands.  Despite the book's publication date, all the cocktails found within were created and served at the old hotel’s bar prior to Prohibition.  The Coronation recipe above was created to commemorate the 1902 crowning of King Edward VII, which likely gives it seniority over the numerous other cocktails with the same moniker, the recipes for which can be found here, here, here, here, and here

As you can see from all the recipes, there was lots of competition for the crown--I guess royalty was all the rage back then--but the recipe above is the true king.

Here’s to drinking like one.

*Got a cocktail question? Hit me on twitter @paystyle, email me at payman(at)lifesacocktail(dot)com, or simply drop me a comment below.
Column: Happy Hour


  • Friggin CANNOT WAIT to try this!!!

    kayoko on

  • I love historic libations and the stories that go with them, and this is an excellent example of the genre.

    The Bonvivant on

  • Yeah this drink is really a stunner. Surprisingly simple, relatively low in alcohol for an all-booze cocktail, and the Apricot just adds a nice lusciousness.

    Paystyle on

  • “…tried to sub in peach schnapps instead…”


    Paystyle on

  • I made one of these at work the other night, but didn’t have the apricot liqueur. Definitely needed it. Foolhardedly tried to sub in peach schnapps instead— silly.

    I did add a splash of soda, which helped bring it to life a little.

    kayoko on

Leave a comment

Please note: comments must be approved before they are published