For those special occasions that call for upscale drinks, here are 21 sophisticated cocktails to add a little bit of luxury and charm to your age 21+ events.
Some of these may be a bit more complex than what you are used to preparing, but that makes them more fitting to save for special events rather than having them on your average tipsy Tuesday.
With the proper presentation, even the easier drinks will feel much more luxurious than you may get otherwise.
While making these drinks at home changes the experience compared to ordering at a five-star restaurant or bar, it is much more cost-efficient to elevate a celebration or occasion hosted at home.
What constitutes a drink as upscale may be subjective. Still, these drinks are fancier, more luxurious, or higher quality than what you would typically order during your regular restaurant visits.
Try out a Golden Cadillac or a Gin Pistachio Sour next time you host a party.
A Sazerac or the classic Fitzgerald are also excellent choices when you need a high-end cocktail.
Whatever your favorite liquor or occasion you celebrate, there is an upscale drink out there to fit the mood!
As you prepare this cocktail, you will want to ensure you use high-quality ingredients.
It is worth spending more money to get a better cocktail, especially when saving it for a special occasion.
Bourbon, Campari, and sweet vermouth are mixed in a 1:1:1 ratio with an orange twist, making a beautiful garnish.
This is a nice change from the classic negroni with the substitution of bourbon instead of gin, making this much warmer and fitting for the colder season.
Despite how simple this recipe is to prepare, it will taste as though you have spent all day or night getting the perfect concoction together to sip on.
This drink is best shaken rather than stirred since that helps cool down the cocktail while adding in a little bit of froth that you wouldn’t receive from simply stirring your drink.
As long as you have good neutral vodka, a little pineapple juice, and some Chambord, you will have a refreshing cocktail that will feel much more elegant than other traditional drinks you might reach for.
Any drink that has a day dedicated to it is worth mixing for a noteworthy occasion.
Pisco, a South American brandy, is blended with some simple syrup and lime juice, with egg white foam topping it off.
You will want to use simple ingredients rather than complex and flavored additions for the best taste.
If blending your cocktail seems too much work, this can also be made in a cocktail shaker.
Created in the 1920s in Burma, this drink came back into the light in 2005 after being revived by a gin-focused bar in New York City.
There are tastes of gin, citrus, and a dash of sourness and spice from the lime and bitters added in.
The gin taste is noticeable, but the balance of other flavors adds an excellent depth to this drink and makes it much easier to drink rather than overwhelm your taste buds with a strong alcohol flavor.
The South Asian lychee fruit tastes like a mixture of strawberries and watermelon, making it a tremendous fruity addition to your martinis.
Using fresh lychee for your cocktail is preferred, but canned versions can also be used if the need calls for it.
Non-flavored vodka, simple syrup, and orange liqueur are added in for an extra level of sweetness and flavor.
Impress your guests with this simple-to-make cocktail that features an exotic ingredient to make it a unique and fancier drink to sip on!
If you are looking for a drink that is intense, spicy, and sweet, look no further!
The Sazerac is precisely what you need.
In 2008, it became the state of Louisiana’s official cocktail, so if you want a little New Orleans flavor in your drink, this is perfect for you.
There aren’t a crazy amount of ingredients to make this cocktail at home, but each one will pack a punch and tons of flavor.
7. The Siesta
If tequila is your liquor of choice, you can switch up the tequila shots or margarita by making a beautiful and refreshing cocktail with a surprisingly complex flavor profile in a Siesta cocktail.
Tequila, Campari, and some lime and grapefruit juice are all shaken together for a citrusy drink that is very easy to make and even easier to sip on.
This cocktail is great for summer get-togethers that need a little extra special drink that won’t necessarily taste strongly like tequila.
A more luxe alternative to a whiskey sour, the Ward 8 replaces just lemon juice with some orange juice and features grenadine replacing some of the simple syrup.
With the right balance of orange and lemon juice, you can make a new crowd-pleasing drink that is a nice change from traditional whiskey sours.
The Boston area is known for this classic cocktail, so make sure to shake up a couple of these for friends visiting.
Take a traditional gimlet to the next level by making this groovy alternative.
The bright purple color comes from Butterfly Pea Tea Gin, while the toasted coconut syrup adds tropical flavors to this cocktail.
An edible flower makes a beautiful garnish for this drink.
This drink looks beautiful and deserves to be sipped on and enjoyed rather than downed quickly.
10. Golden Cadillac
Rich, creamy, and lightly tasting chocolate, this cocktail has withstood the test of time; with one taste, you will understand why!
Imagine a Brandy Alexander with Galliano, an Italian liqueur, rather than brandy.
Creme de cacao is also a special ingredient that makes this more of a dessert drink.
A bit of freshly ground nutmeg as a garnish is necessary to pull together all of the sweet flavors of this drink, so be sure to include it!
11. Pear Manhattan
Similar to a classic Manhattan drink, this features sweet vermouth and Angostura bitters, but rather than rye whiskey, this cocktail switches it out for pear brandy.
It is somehow both a summery drink and a wintertime drink in one.
The vermouth adds in some notes of herbs and spices, balanced out by the freshness of the pear flavor.
Chambord is the star of this cocktail, but adding bourbon, vanilla syrup, bitters, and some berries as a garnish are unusual ingredients that make this extra special.
As the name might suggest, this tastes like victory in a glass, so go ahead and shake it together to celebrate any triumph in your life!
This cocktail has a nice balance of spice and sweetness to make any occasion feel much more upscale.
13. Pink Fizz
This cocktail tastes high-end, but the work that goes into it is far from difficult.
The hardest part may be separating your egg whites, but even that is easy to do quickly with some simple instructions.
Keep in mind that you should leave the ice out from your shaker to get the right consistency for your foam.
14. Endless Summer
Three ingredients make your lavender syrup, and three elements make your Endless Summer cocktail (a total of five ingredients)!
The syrup will become a new part of your cooking, baking, and bartending routine since it goes well with all foods and drinks, especially this cocktail.
Once your lavender syrup is ready, combine everything into a shaker and pour it through a fine-mesh strainer into a cocktail glass for a beautiful drink that tastes fruity and refreshing!
A little bit more complex than other drinks, this Gin Pistachio Sour is well worth the little extra work it takes to make it.
This uses a pistachio lemon syrup that is not as sweet as other syrups but still adds the right level of nuttiness and citrus flavors to your cocktail.
Egg whites are also used for the foam topping of this drink since it adds a lovely velvety texture on top.
A raspberry rose syrup is made for this cocktail with a handful of easy-to-find ingredients plus some edible rose petals.
With a dry and fresh-tasting white wine, you get a balance of the fruity and floral taste in this cocktail.
For an extra touch of elegance, you can make flower ice cubes with rose petals, but this is optional.
17. The Millionaire
Sipping on this cocktail is a surefire way to make you and your guests feel like a million bucks!
Featuring dark rum, amber rum, sloe gin, and apricot brandy, there is a lot of depth in the flavors present in this drink, but they blend so well to bring each other out when they are all shaken together.
If bourbon is more to your taste, an alternative recipe that uses bourbon instead of rum is listed.
18. Tinto De Verano
Similar to sangria, this Spanish wine cocktail has less alcohol and is much easier to make than the already simple drink.
All you need to do is mix some red wine with your favorite lemon-lime soda and add a garnish of a lemon slice.
This is great served in a pitcher or even in individual glasses depending on what the occasion calls for!
20. Rhubarb Sour
Some of the best upscale drinks are the ones that are made with little work yet taste exquisite.
This Rhubarb Sour Cocktail is precisely that!
The homemade rhubarb syrup complements the gin and citrus flavors while making it an incredibly refreshing drink for a hot summer day.
21. The Last Word
Equal parts gin, Green Chartreuse liqueur, Luxardo Maraschino Cherry liqueur, and some lime juice are all shaken together for this elegant cocktail, which was the most expensive item at the Detroit Athletic Club.
Even though all it takes is putting your ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shaking it up, it adds a nice air of luxury to the special occasion that calls for this upscale drink.
The bottom line
Upscale drinks are a great way to turn a special event into a memorable one.
These 21 cocktails are luxurious, elegant, and taste amazing.
Although they may be easy to put together, they will leave you and your guests pleasantly surprised by all they have to offer.
- French Martini
- Peruvian Pisco Sour
- Pegu Club Cocktail
- Lychee Martini
- The Siesta
- Ward 8 Cocktail
- The Groovy Gimlet
- Golden Cadillac
- Pear Manhattan
- The Sweet Taste Of Victory
- Pink Fizz
- Endless Summer
- Gin Pistachio Sour
- Roses & Raspberry Spritzer
- The Millionaire
- Tinto De Verano
- Rhubarb Sour
- The Last Word
- Take a look at our list of Upscale Drinks.
- Choose the ingredients you like the most.
- Create your new favorite cocktail you can enjoy!
- Have fun and tell us what you think on our Facebook Page!