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Friday Night Thirst: The 10 Most Popular Cocktails in the World

Alcoholic beverages have long been accepted as the perfect companion for date nights, dinners, and all-round social fun, but which are the most popular cocktails in the world? Do your bar buddies prefer vodka, tequila, rum, or whiskey?

Most countries have trademark drinks, the taste of which their populations have naturally adjusted and acclimated to over time, partially based on the accessibility of certain liquors in that region. A fernet with Coke, for example, is the most commonly ordered cocktail in Argentina, while a tamagozake is popular in Japan. Negroni’s are typically ordered in Italy as an apperitivo before dinner, and the famous Pisco Sour originated in Lima, Peru (or maybe in Chile, who really knows), making it the go-to choice in regional bars.

However, just as music has its ten most popular songs of all time, which we covered in a previous article, drinking habits and booze preferences also vary from one culture to another. Nonetheless, there are ten cocktails that never fail our alcohol cravings and are popular in any bar on the planet. So bartenders beware: if you can’t prepare at least eight of the following ten most popular cocktails in the world, you should seriously reconsider your profession (or learn how to serve them).


10. Piña Colada

This flavorful concoction reminds everyone of a sunny beach on a hot day, and has in fact been Puerto Rico’s official cocktail since 1978. The drink, however, was created in 1963 by the bartender of the island’s Barrachina Restaurant, Don Ramon Portas Mingot, who decided to serve the guests this refreshing mixture of rum, coconut cream, and pineapple juice. While there are several variations of this drink, it’s commonly served blended or shaken with ice and garnished with fresh pineapple wedges. This cocktail is so popular it even entered into history, as the National Piña Colada Day is celebrated on July 10th in Puerto Rico.

9. Cosmopolitan

This elegant cocktail is a favorite drink of ladies, achieving its iconic status with the HBO show Sex and the City, where the cast almost exclusively drank “cosmos”. Classy, but powerful, this drink is made up of a full shot of vodka, triple sec, fresh lime juice, and finally cranberry juice, which gives it that trademark red coloring.


8. Daiquiri

Another golden oldie is the Daiquiri. Created by American mining engineer Jennings Cox during the Spanish-American war in Cuba, this simple concoction of rum, sugar, and lime juice has stood the test of time and bestowed many hangovers on the drinking population. Part of this cocktail’s popularity is due to the ample fruit combinations that can be added to it, as well as its frozen texture. Also, Earnest Hemingway quickly became a big promoter of the rum-based drink at El Floridita, his local hangout in Havana, Cuba.


Three popular drinks down the hatch, seven more yet to drain, on our list of the most popular cocktails in the world, continuing on the next page.

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