Cocktail Kingdom Library (home)


spirits (originally gin or whiskey); curaçao, grenadine and/or raspberry liqueur; lemon juice or lime juice, and carbonated water

A class of mixed drink—a sour sweetened and flavored with a liqueur or fruit syrup instead of sugar—from the 1870s that enjoyed two bouts of popularity prior to Prohibition, making the “new school” transition to the cocktail glass alongside the sour in the 1890s, then reemerging after Prohibition as one of the most popular drink categories, led by the Sidecar and the tequila daisy—the Margarita.

Shown, above, is a Gin Daisy recipe from Harry Johnson’s book. It’s an example of one earlier daisy style that features a liqueur (Chartreuse, in this case) and is strained into a cocktail glass. Johnson’s approach is maybe a bit old fashioned for 1900—stirring the drink with shaved ice—but that’s how he rolled. Much like the Sour, Daisy recipes were all over the map, meaning they were not strongly-defined, and once successful daisy-derivations achieved renown, they were known by other names.

Oxford Companion to Spirits and Cocktails, p. 215–216; Imbibe! p. 127–8; barware icons courtesy of Haus Alpenz