The History of Craft Cocktails

Craft cocktails are fun, creative, and entertaining for a 21st birthday event, as much as the retired couple on vacation. Trying something new can excite your evening if you enjoy a good cocktail. The history of craft cocktails may entice you to branch out!


Early Cocktails

The original craft cocktail was used as a medication when Sir Francis Drake, commander of a fleet of English ships, fell ill in Havana in the late 1500s. It was called El Draque and made of lime, sugar, mint, and rum-soaked bark at the time. 


Various punches are said to have been crafted and consumed in the 1600s; the mid-1800s boast the creation of sours alongside whiskey and gin fixes. Despite the presence of these beverages, the credit for the first cocktail is not given to any of these. It wasn’t until the mid-1800s that American Aaron Bird created the modern cocktail. Bird mixed cognac with elixirs to develop what’s known as the Sazerac, which is typically considered the first proper cocktail. 



Despite early successes of craft cocktails, the prohibition era began to attempt to stop alcoholism, corruption, and violence. Although many secret locations still served cocktails and other alcoholic beverages, alcohol was outlawed for over a decade. Although alcohol was allowed once more in the early 1930s, cocktails didn’t gain a lot of popularity until the end of World War 2. 

Some popular prohibition-era cocktails include:

  1. Sidecar
  2. Old Fashioned
  3. Highball
  4. Gin Rickey


Cocktail Parties

The fifties began a trend of cocktail parties as a social event. The better the cocktail party, the higher an individual moved on the social ladder. New recipes and authentic craft cocktails became widely known and loved during this time. This was the beginning of an era in its own right. 

Some 1950s cocktails include:

  1. Pina Colada
  2. Mai Tai
  3. Martini
  4. Gin Punch


The 1990s and Early 2000s

The 90s and 2000s saw traditional cocktails become exceptionally popular once more. The prohibition-era cocktails were gaining popularity, and new, healthier cocktails were also created. These decades provided cocktail lovers with several new beverages, many of which have remained popular ever since. 

Some popular cocktails during this time include:

  1. Bloody Mary
  2. Cable Car
  3. Cosmopolitan
  4. Appletini


Try Some Craft Cocktails!

If this brief history lesson has sparked an interest in craft cocktails, it’s time to visit! Committee in the seaport offers tasty and flavorful craft cocktails – whether you’re a newbie to the beverages or an experienced connoisseur. Have a drink with us!