The Cosmopolitan – Version 2

Thanks to a little show that premiered in 1998, the Cosmo is one of the most popular cocktails of the last 20 years. What’s that? It couldn’t possibly have been t-w-e-n-t-y y-e-a-r-s since that show launched? No worries. I’ll just wait here while you check that math with my good friend, gravity… Hey, welcome back! So, yeah, it’s actually only been 19, but I rounded up because THAT’S WHAT OLD PEOPLE DO.

Anyway… the Cosmopolitan is a sour cocktail traditionally made with vodka and cranberry juice. Slightly sweeter versions call for Cointreau, but we kept ours tart and opted for a version that called for ginger. Here’s how we made it.


  • 4 1/2 ounces pure cranberry juice (the unsweetened kind)
  • 1 1/2 ounces vodka
  • 1/2 ounce ginger-lime simple syrup
  • 1/2 ounce ginger liqueur (Holy gigantic bottle!)
  • 2 dashes Angustura bitters

Cranberries, lime slices and ginger slices, to garnish

For the simple syrup

  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 7 slices (coins) of fresh ginger (thickness of a dime)
  • 2 short strips of lime zest (just enough for a hint)

To make the syrup, bring the water, sugar, fresh ginger, and lime zest to a boil in a small pot, then reduce the heat to low, and let simmer 5 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat, strain the syrup, and reserve the “candied” ginger to use as a garnish. Let the syrup cool to room temp, and then place it in the fridge to chill.

Pour the cranberry juice, booze, syrup, and bitters into a shaker filled with ice, secure the lid, and shake until chilled. Strain into an ice-filled tumbler, and garnish with a few cranberries, a slice of lime, and a few coins of the “candied” ginger.

The verdict: So, so sour! And delicious. And sour! If, however, you’re not a fan of drinking with one eye squeezed closed, you’ll definitely want to add a little more syrup or opt for a sweetened cranberry juice. As for our crew, two of us loved the tartness, and two of us drank like good sports. All, however, agreed that the candied ginger was a lovely surprise, both in taste and smell. Would love to try this again on a summer’s night.

Our original Cosmopolitan was featured back in August 2016.

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