Cocktails named after birds Part I

Birds may be our favorite thing in the world, but cocktails might be a close second. There are several origin stories behind the calling of a mixed drink a cocktail and several of the stories are birdy in nature. One theory is that, "cocktails were originally a morning beverage, and the cocktail was the name given as metaphor for the rooster (cocktail) heralding morning light of day, (Haigh, T (2009) Vintage Spirits & Forgotten Cocktails. Minneapolis, MN: Quarry Books). Another theory is that  it was customary to put a feather, presumably from a cock’s tail, in the drink to serve both as decoration and to signal to teetotalers that the drink contained alcohol (Thomas, Jerry (1862). How To Mix Drinks).

Whatever the term's etymology, we can all agree that there are many delicious drinks to order from your bartender. Leading up to our Fly into the Bird Bar event in Los Angeles, we will be posting some of our favorite avian-inspired concoctions:

Passenger Pigeon


2 ounces Calvados

3/4 ounce Sweet Vermouth

1/4 ounce Pimento Dram

1 dash Angostura bitters


Place all of the ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice.

Stir the mixture for 30 seconds to chill and then strain into a cocktail glass; serve immediately.


White Pelican


1 3/4 oz gin (5 cl, 7/16 gills)

1/2 oz dry vermouth (1.5 cl, 1/8 gills)

1/4 oz sweet vermouth (6 dashes, 1/16 gills)


Stir in mixing glass with ice & strain in to  a cocktail glass (4.5 oz)


Blue Bird


2 oz gin (6 cl, 1/2 gills)

1/4 oz blue curacao (6 dashes, 1/16 gills)

1 dash Angostura bitters

Add lemon twist, cherry


Stir in mixing glass with ice & strain




1 1/2 oz rye or Bourbon whiskey (4.5 cl, 3/8 gills)

3/4 oz fresh lemon juice (2 cl, 3/16 gills)

1/4 oz grenadine (6 dashes, 1/16 gills)

1/2 tsp sugar (2 dashes)


Shake in iced cocktail shaker & strain




1 oz American Dry Gin such as Bluecoat

1/2 oz fresh squeezed lemon juice

1/2 oz hop muddled simple syrup

6 oz Stone IPA

Rosemary Sprig for garnish


To make the hop syrup, take 1/4 oz of dried aroma hops (such as Cascade, Citra, Simcoe, etc) and 1 oz of simple syrup. Muddle to combine and strain through a fine mesh filter. For the cocktail, combine the gin, lemon juice and simple syrup in a shaker and shake with ice. Strain into a tulip glass and top with 6 oz of Stone IPA. Garnish with a Rosemary sprig.

Recipes from: She Knows Food & Recipes, CocktailDB, Beermixology

How you can help, right now