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The story of the Cosmopolitan

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1996 | New York, USA

The Cosmopolitan was already being made in the first half of the 20th century. Moreover, it featured orange liqueur and lemon juice, to say nothing of today's lime. The red color was brought by raspberry syrup, and gin served as the base.

Then the recipe was happily forgotten for about twenty years. Then in Massachusetts in the 1970s, the next version of the old cocktail surfaced: with vodka and cranberry juice. It's no accident that Ocean Spray, the biggest producer of boxed cranberry juice, is located in the same state!

The story continues from there. In the middle of the 1980s, a certain Cheryl Cook from Miami presented something very similar to the contemporary recipe for a Cosmopolitan, but instead of lime juice, she used lime cordial. In 1988, in order to promote their product, vodka giant ABSOLUTE Citron appeared on the menu of such classic establishments as Odeon in New York and Fog City Diner in San Francisco, where it quickly attained signature status.

In 1996, the "Cocktail King" Dale DeGroff, included the Cosmopolitan on the menu for the Rainbow Room on the 35th floor of Rockefeller Center. From his side, he added the technique that made him famous to the recipe: the Flaming Orange Peel, an extraction of the essential oils from an orange peel by heating on an open flame. Soon, he got the chance to made the cocktail for Madonna, and she liked the taste. The next day, DeGroff was inundated with offers to share the recipe for his new drink, and the press officially granted him the title of "father" of the Cosmopolitan. Then in 1998, "Sex in the City" happened, which instantly expanded the pink drink's renown to universal proportions.

See the recipe


Historian:Vladimir Zhuravlev
Illustration: Moe
Journalists: Sara Davis, Samantha Johnson

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