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12 Sour Recipes for Tart, Refreshing Cocktails

Few things are more refreshing than a super tart drink, so we find ourselves turning to sours especially once the weather warms up. This cocktail format fits with so many different spirits and flavors, so it can easily be switched up for creative new recipes to suit different tastes. Try each of these to find your new favorite sour.

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12 Sour Recipes for Tart, Refreshing Cocktails
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    New York Sour

    New York Sour

    In this sophisticated take on a whiskey sour, a vibrant float of fruity red wine hovers at the top of the glass for a striking presentation. The perfect balance of fruity red wine and smoky-sweet bourbon, the New York Sour cocktail is a classic for a reason. Shaking the cocktail with large ice cubes …

    Pisco Sour

    Pisco Sour

    The Pisco Sour originated in Lima, Peru, and this version with a frothy egg white topping was created in the U.S. Pisco is a brandy-like alcohol distilled by grapes, used in this drink along with bright, tart lime juice and sweet simple syrup. The whipped egg whites dotted with bitters on top make …

    Tamarind Whiskey Sour

    Tamarind Whiskey Sour

    Upgrade your favorite whiskey drink with just one tablespoon of tamarind paste. A traditional whiskey sour is the platonic ideal of a pre-dinner cocktail. Tart, sweet, and refreshing, it has an appealing, rich texture and packs a hefty alcoholic punch. This drink somehow improves on that perfection …

    Amaretto Sour

    Amaretto Sour

    This frothy cocktail is surprisingly simple to make. Most amaretto sours are too sweet. This one from Jeffrey Morgenthaler, who worked for over a decade at the former Pépé Le Moko in Portland, Oregon, is perfectly balanced. The Amaretto Sour was a popular cocktail in the 1980s when both amaretto …

    Smoky Mezcal-Fig Sour

    Smoky Mezcal-Fig Sour

    The spicy-sweet fig-ginger syrup rounds out the smoky mezcal and bright lemon juice in this cocktail. Mezcal is still the dominant flavor in this barely sweet drink that lets the liquor shine. 1 1/3 cups simple syrup 10 dried figs, halved 1 (4-inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced (about …

    Arigato Sour

    Arigato Sour

    A play on a sweet and tart whiskey sour featuring a citrus you may not have tried before. For anyone who doesn’t consider themselves a whiskey drinker, this is the cocktail for you. Salvatore Tafuri’s Arigato Sour is a light and refreshing tipple that’s more evocative of a gin drink, where the …

    Ghia Sour

    Ghia Sour

    Craving a cocktail that leans on the sweet, bitter flavor of Campari without the booze? This Ghia Sour will do the trick. If you're seeking the bitter backbone of a good amaro or Campari without the booze, this Ghia Sour from Carey Jones and John D. McCarthy is bound to become a go-to in your …

    Midori Shochu Sour

    Midori Shochu Sour

    This Midori Sour, which melds the best qualities of Midori with Shochu, was created by Julia Momosé, owner of Kumiko, a Japanese dining bar in Chicago, and author of The Way of the Cocktail: Japanese Traditions, Techniques & Recipes. This dazzling cocktail comes together quickly in a shaker, and …

    Artesano Pisco Sour

    Artesano Pisco Sour

    Here's proof that a perfectly foamy cocktail can fix almost anything. “Pisco is Peru’s national drink and a part of the pride and joy of every Peruvian,” says Marek Trocha, bartender at Artesano in New York City, a restaurant that features elegant Peruvian cuisine. When it comes to pisco, the Pisco …

    How to Make an Exceptional Whiskey Sour

    How to Make an Exceptional Whiskey Sour

    Simple but endlessly satisfying, this classic sour is a pre-Prohibition era hit. In our opinion, ordering a Whiskey Sour is never a bad idea — even a dive bar whiskey sour made with sugar-laden sour mix are an improvement on the classic well cocktail. Despite its broad appeal, when a Whiskey Sour is …

    Tamarind-Mezcal Sour

    Tamarind-Mezcal Sour

    Smoky mezcal and savory bitters are rounded out by sweet-tart lemon juice and tamarind puree in this punchy cocktail. 2 tablespoons Tamarind-Citrus Syrup 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 1 1/2 tablespoons (3/4 ounce) manzanilla sherry 1 1/2 tablespoons (3/4 ounces) mezcal joven espadín or Del Maguey …

    Apricot Sour

    Apricot Sour

    Central Michel Richard * Washington, DCThe inventive cocktails at Central, Michel Richard's casual alternative to his flagship Citronelle, mirror the restaurant's updated American dishes, such as lobster burgers and crab cakes with leek tartar sauce.Plus: Ultimate Cocktail Guide 1 1/2 ounces apricot …

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