Why is it called a Cocktail?

The first known definition came as a quote: "Cocktail is a stimulating liquor composed of spirits of any kind, sugar, water, and bitters—it is vulgarly called a bittered sling and is supposed to be an excellent electioneering potion, inasmuch as it renders the heart stout and bold, at the same time that it fuddles the head. It is said, also to be of great use to a
Democratic candidate: because a person, having swallowed a glass of it, is ready to swallow anything else."
~ May 13, 1806, edition of
The Balance and Columbian Repository

The word COCKTAIL originally meant a mixture of spirits, bitters, sugar, and water, and was considered a medicinal tonic. Today, Wikipedia says a cocktail is an
alcoholic mixed drink that contains two or more ingredients — at least one of the ingredients must be a spirit. Well, that's anything from the crisp sip of a martini to a bold bite of a Bloody Mary to a crazy ice cream alcohol laden milkshake.

The first "cocktail party" ever thrown was allegedly by Mrs. Julius S. Walsh Jr. of St. Louis, MO, in May 1917. Mrs. Walsh invited 50 guests to her home at noon on a Sunday. (As it should be!)The party lasted an hour, until lunch was served at 1 pm. The site of this first cocktail party still stands. In 1924, the
Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Louis bought the Walsh mansion at 4510 Lindell Boulevard, and it has served as the local archbishop's residence ever since. And I'm guessing the Arch B still slings one at noon in honor of Mrs. J and her ingenious party idea. Who doesn't love a good belt with lunch!
The Higby Perfecta Margarita

1 1/2 ounces
tequila (Herradura Silver)
1 ounce freshly squeezed
lime juice
1/2 ounce Cointreau (not Triple Sec)
(if you want it sweeter - add a 1/4 packet of Truvia)

  • If using salt, place in a shallow dish. Moisten the rim of a rocks glass with a dampened paper towel, then dip in salt.
  • Fill a cold shaker with ice; add tequila, lime juice, Cointreau; and shake till your hand goes numb.
  • Serve over rocks in a short glass immediately.

Always use coasters.

Watch Rachel Maddow "Drink Connoisseur" Show the Proper Way to Make a Old Fashion.