Every year, Drinks International asks 100 of the best bars in the world to rank their biggest selling cocktails. These are their top 10 classics for 2021.
1. Old Fashioned
The Old Fashioned has topped the biggest selling list for the past seven years. However, Drinks International said “for the first time, succession looks plausible”. This year only 23% of bars said the sweetened American whiskey drink was their top seller, down from 35% last year.
The Negroni has been runner up on the biggest selling list for the past seven years, but it’s gaining ground – 22% of respondents made it their most likely serve (up from 13% last year).
The Daiquiri is the world’s top rum tipple. Rarely the number one cocktail in a bar (only 3% said it was the top seller) this Cuban white rum and lime classic was among the two most likely served in almost of a third of venues polled.
4. Dry Martini
The purist’s gin cocktail, the Dry Martini, completes a static top four this year. This classic was among the top five in just under a quarter of our polled bars, while just under half said it figured in their top 10.
Up two places on last year, the Margarita is the top tequila cocktail on the list. It’s among the top five drinks in 17% of bars and top 10 in 46% of cases. “If we hadn’t split out the votes for the Tommy’s Margarita, it’d be a place higher,” Drinks International said.
6. Espresso Martini
Now an established member of the top 10, the vodka-coffee cocktail retains sixth spot. It’s a top-10 serve in almost 40% of polled bars, and the number one classic in 5%.
7. Whiskey Sour
Down a couple of places, this old timer comprising American whiskey and lemon was first published in Jerry Thomas’s book How to Mix Drinks or the Bon Vivant’s Companion in 1862. This isn’t too many bars’ top serve but was a top-10 classic in 40% of bars polled.
It’s eighth again for the whiskey classic, the Manhattan, with 36% of polled bars making it among their top 10. This rye (and sometimes bourbon) and vermouth veteran mix may play second fiddle to the Old Fashioned in the whiskey cocktail stakes but it was still among the top-three classics in more than 10% of bars.
9. Aperol Spritz
Up one is the Aperol Spritz. Just under 30% of bars named it in their top 10 – a “sign of the spritz-loving times we live in”.
The white rum, lime and mint long drink is a top-10 classic in about a quarter of Drinks International’s sample of the world’s best bars.
Pictured main: Jack Daniel’s Old Fashioned.