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Purple Cocktails that Don’t Suck

We love a pretty purple cocktail – it looks like something magical, like a mana potion or the juice of some otherworldly fruit. But does it taste good? We’ve found twelve solid purple cocktails that were actually good enough to make it in the Cocktail Party app.
Bella Luna
Gin, Elderflower liqueur, Violet-berry liqueur...
Fresh Bramble
Blackberry, Simple syrup, Gin...
The Drive
Gin, Lemon, Simple syrup...
Blue Angel
Cognac, Triple sec, Crème de violette...
Lavender Mule
Vodka, Lime, Ginger syrup...
Blue Moon
Gin, Violet-berry liqueur, Lemon...
Eagle’s Dream
Gin, Crème de violette, Egg...
Water Lily
Gin, Triple sec, Crème de violette...
Stormy Morning
Crème de violette, Elderflower liqueur, Lime...
Violet Fizz
Gin, Crème de violette, Lemon...
Carbonated Piston Slinger
Overproof aged rum, Sloe gin, Lime...
Aviation
Gin, Lemon, Maraschino...

First, we have cocktails with one of our favorite ingredients: Crème de violette. This violet-flower liqueur dates back to the early 19th century, but it disappeared from the US and other countries for much of the 20th century as tastes changed and mixologists turned away from its bracing, perfume-y flavor.

The Aviation is one of  the loveliest cocktails ever divined: bright, sour, with a color like early dawn. Sub in triple sec for maraschino, and you get the Water Lily, a sweet drink reminiscent of Victorian violet candies.

One of our favorite low-proof brunch cocktails is the Stormy Morning, a gorgeous concoction of crème de violette, elderflower liqueur, lime juice, and sparkling wine. We really dig it with a dry, fruit-forward Spanish Cava (although it’s lovely with Champagne or Prosecco, too). This drink reads a little more blue than purple, but the overall effect is so pretty, like sunlight filtered through rainclouds.

Two drinks that originally called for Creme Yvette (a ruby-tinted liqueur) take on a more blue-purple tint when CdV is subbed in: the Blue Moon and the Bella Luna.

The prettiest purple cocktails, though, are probably the ones with egg whites or cream; the opacity from those ingredients helps the purple color to stand out a bit better. The Eagle’s Dream is a perfectly gorgeous little jewel; add some cream and club soda and you’ve got a Violet Fizz. The Blue Angel also uses cream, and the modernized recipe with CdV in place of blue curaçao gives it a lovely blush-violet hue. The Drive gets pretty purple shade when you use a blackberry jam instead of the default raspberry, and it tastes like the inside of a macaron!

Lavender syrup can be either a natural straw-yellow color, or can be artificially tinted purple. Normally, we prefer the natural stuff – but in a drink like the Lavender Mule, the effect of purple syrup is stunning.

Blackberries can sometimes produce a similar magenta-purple color – the Fresh Bramble offers a gorgeous purple-red gradient effect from the muddled berries.

Sloe gin can also produce a red-violet hue – especially if it’s darkened by a brown spirit like overproof demerara rum, like in the Carbonated Piston Slinger.

What’s Next After the Negroni? Alternatives to the Classic Bitter Cocktail

The venerated Negroni has introduced a whole new generation to the acrid beauty of Campari, and other bitter citrus apéritif like Gran Classico or Luxardo. That said, it’s not the end of the story – the Negroni is simply the first step on a journey of bitter delights. Read on for some of our favorite alternatives to your usual Negroni!

12 Actually-Delicious Blue Cocktails

We’ve tested recipes until our tongues turned blue, and we’ve dug up twelve solid, well-balanced recipes that might just make even the most stalwart haters appreciate the mystical charms of a pretty blue cocktail.

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