i-D's guide to classic cocktails

Tickle your tastebuds with our step by step guide to Bloody Mary, Margarita, Manhattan and Martini-making by World Class Bartender of the Year 2014 Charles Joly.

by i-D Team
18 December 2014, 12:35pm

Join Yasmin and Amber Le Bon, Spector frontman Fred Macpherson and ballet soloist Eric Underwood as they navigate you through the recipes of three classic drinks, all masterminded by World Class Bartender of the Year 2014 Charles Joly, and highlight the do's and don'ts of cocktail making in our latest video here. And if that wasn't enough to tickle your tastebuds, see our step by step guide to Bloody Mary, Margarita, Manhattan and Martini-making below or read our interview with Charles Joly here.

Bloody Mary

50ml Ketel One Vodka
120ml fresh tomato juice
Tabasco - to taste 
Worcestershire sauce - to taste
Pinch of salt and pepper
Dash of fresh lemon juice 
Garnish - cherry tomato and black pepper

1. Grab a cocktail shaker and add all the ingredients
2. Stir together and taste with a straw or a barspoon, add more spice when necessary
3. Add a scoop of ice and close the shaker
4. Gently rock to mix the ingredients, don't shake as it will thin out the liquid
5. Add ice into a highball
6. Pour the mixture into the glass leaving a 1cm gap from the rim
7. Add your cherry tomato, a straw and season with extra pepper

- Good quality vodka and tomato juice are key, some bartenders add passata sauce for added texture.
- Don't be sacred of the spices, usually add at least 4 dashes of Tabasco and 5 of Worcester sauce.
- Always balance with a touch of fresh citrus (usually lemon)
- You should never shake a Bloody Mary, you should gently roll the ingredients in a shaker as this will keep the texture of the tomato Juice
- You can add many other ingredients to a Bloody Mary to give it a personal twist; sweet chilli sauce and lemongrass, most fresh herbs such as basil, thyme and tarragon. You can also add red wine or sherry for extra depth

Tommies Margarita

50ml Don Julio Blanco
15ml agave nectar
20ml fresh lime
Garnish - lime wheel, salt on request

1. Pour the ingredients into a cocktail shaker and stir together to dilute the agave syrup
2. When they have merged together add lots of ice to the shaker
3. Shake really hard
4. Wet half of your glass with fresh lime and dip into a saucer of salt
5. Add large ice cubes into the glass and pour the mixture through a tea strainer over the ice
6. Garnish with a wheel of lime

- The use of natural sweetener and fresh ingredients make this a simple but well-balanced refreshing cocktail. The key is getting the correct balance between sweet and sour
- Ice is key within this drink as it should be served on the rocks. Hand cut ice is best and one/two large lumps should be perfect in an old fashioned glass
- When you shake the ingredients together you must ensure the agave glues the lime and tequila together, you have to shake hard to ensure this.
- Adding fresh fruit such as peach, passion fruit, or mandarins provide a summer touch and you can batch them up into jugs if you are having a party


50ml Bulleit Bourbon
25ml sweet vermouth
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Garnish - orange twist/fresh cherry

1. Fill a mixing glass full of ice
2. Add two dashes of bitters to coat the ice
3. Add the Bulleit and the vermouth and stir together
4. Stir approximately 20 times
5. Strain into a chilled martini glass and drop a cherry in the centre
6. Cut a piece of orange peel and spray it over the top of the drink, throw the spent orange in the bin

- The Manhattan is all about texture and temperature. It should be stirred as not to over dilute and this will thin out the bourbon and sweet vermouth. If you stir with ice it cools it down and mixes the ingredients together
- Always use a frozen martini glass as when the liquid goes into the glass it is only going to get warmer
- Sweet, dry or perfect are the three ways to have a Manhattan. These vary on sweet vs dry vermouth.
- Right now there is so much choice around with vermouth. Each one has different flavour profiles, try using La Quintyne or Antica Formula. Always keep your vermouth in the fridge as it will increase its life. Don't even think about using the vermouth in grandmas cupboard as vermouth only stays fresh for 1 month
- As a life skill, most men should be able to make a few cocktails. The Manhattan is certainly one of these
- Pick a firm orange and cut a thumb shaped twist of the peel and squeeze it together over the drink so that the oils coat the surface, throw this away and drop a cherry into the glass

Vesper Martini
1.5oz Tanqueray No. TEN gin
0.75oz Ketel One Vodka
0.5oz Cocci Americano
0.25oz Bianco vermouth
Dash of orange bitters
Garnish - flamed orange peel


1. Combine all ingredients
2. Stir over ice and pour into a glass
3. Flame orange peel and drop in to garnish

- Serve in a vintage coupe

WATCH i-D's Guide to Classic Cocktails here

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i-d's guide to classic cocktails