The History of Cocktails we do not know About

Cocktails are a part of our party lives. But little do we know the origin of them. So, let us go through the history of cocktails and master that knowledge.

We go to the pubs, order our favorite cocktails, and chill. But how often do our minds get curious to know the origin of our favorite drinks? Rarely, right? Now, mixing drinks was always common and prevalent around the 1800s. So, let us take a trip down memory lane and find out about the cocktail history.

History of cocktails

There have been multiple stories and legends about cocktails. Adding some flavor and spice was a thing going on for centuries. However, just adding a small paper umbrella with some orange peel does not make a drink cocktail, and it is more than just that.

Even though thought of as an American creation, cocktails are partly British. Cocktails are derived from British punches- a mixture of spirits with fruit juices and spices. The term cocktail was vaguely mentioned here and there in bits and pieces until 1806, when The Balance and Columbian Repository of Hudson, New York, published the proper definition of a cocktail, which we know today- A stimulating liquor composed of any kind of sugar, water, and bitters.

Want to know some more history about your favorite cocktails? Have a look.


Served in a Martini glass, this drink gained popularity in the 90s. While there is a dispute behind the origin of cosmopolitan, and many consider it a contemporary drink, there is a mention of a recipe for Cosmopolitan Daisy in the Pioneers of Mixing at Elite Bars 1930-1933, which was published in 1934. One of the stories goes where the bartender, Neal Murray, claims that he created the cosmopolitan by adding some cranberry juice to kamikaze. The taster further expressed, “How cosmopolitan,” ‌naming the beverage.



Margarita is our go-to cocktail on every occasion. I mean, who doesn’t fancy this tequila-lime juice combo? Even with margaritas, several stories are attached. One of the oldest ones is about a Hotel Manager, David Daniel Negrete, whose girlfriend, Margarita, liked salt in her drinks, which led him to come up with the drink as a present.



Although an interesting name, screwdriver is a pretty easy-to-make cocktail needing just vodka and orange juice. Its origin can be traced back to the 1950s when US workers in the Persian Gulf used to add vodka to their orange juices while working. Due to the lack of a spoon, they stirred the drink with a screwdriver. Hence, the name.


White Russian

Although the name suggests, White Russian is not of Russian origin. It gets the name for the presence of vodka in it. It originated in the 1960s when some people added some cream to the Black Russian, thus making it white. The main credit behind the creation of White Russian goes to Gustave Tops, a Belgian barkeep who came up with the Black Russian drink to honor the US Ambassador. Eventually, in the later years, the cream was added. However, the drink was not on the radar until The Big Lebowski brought it to the big screen. 

white Russian

Long Island Iced Tea

While discussing cocktail history, let us discuss the origin of the audience’s favorite cocktail- LIIT. I am guessing we can figure out from its name that Long Island Iced Tea definitely originated from Long Island. Yes, but there are two stories; first, Kingsport claims that a man named Charlie created LIIT in the 1920s, prohibition-era Long Island, an island in the Holston River in Kingsport. Another story suggests that Robert Butt invented the LIIT on Long Island, New York, in the 1970s as a part of a contest while working in an inn on Long Island.

Long Island iced tea (1)

Wrap it up

Did you know about these cocktail origins? I guess not. I hope this article gave you more insights into your favorite drinks. After all, what is the point of loving a drink if you don’t know where it came from, right?