Believe it or not, cocktails have families too. Some of them - like the ones in the Martini, Vesper, and Martinez family - share a lot of the same genes. Others, like Corpse Revivers, mostly just share a name. Several different Corpse Revivers have been around for over a century, but the best one by far is the Corpse Reviver No. 2. It’s well-balanced, strong without tasting too boozy, and deceptively complex for something that looks like a glass of lemonade trying to convince everyone it’s an elegant cocktail.
How It Tastes: Fresh, Tart, Like A Warm Spring Day With A Cold Breeze
The Corpse reviver
- .75 ounce gin
- .75 ounce Cointreau
- .75 ounce Lillet Blanc
- .75 ounce lemon juice
- Teaspoon of absinthe or pastis
Step One: Lemon Juice
Sometimes, we wonder if lemons know how important they are to the world of cocktails. They’re invaluable, and you need to squeeze one right now to get some fresh juice. Add .75 ounce to your shaker.
Step Two: Lillet
Similar to vermouth, Lillet is a fortified wine. It’s light and slightly sweet, it’s pretty easy to find in liquor stores, and if you buy a bottle, you can drink it on its own or in a Spritz. But if you can’t find it, there are few things you can substitute for a substantially similar (and still-delicious) cocktail. Cocchi Americano, for example, or Kina L’Avion D’Or. Whatever you have, pour .75 ounce in your shaker.
Step Three: Cointreau
Here, you really just need some type of curaçao (which is a fancy way of saying orange liqueur). Cointreau is a common type of curaçao that most people seem to know, and it’s a very respectable 80-proof, so that’s why we’re telling you to use it - but if you have something like Grand Marnier, Combier, or Pierre Ferrand, any of those will work as well. They’re all orange liqueurs, and they’re all wonderful in their own ways. Put .75 ounce curaçao in your shaker.
Step Four: Gin
All gins use a bunch of different ingredients to achieve different flavor profiles, so you need to find one that speaks to you and maybe even fills a void in your soul in a confusing yet beneficial way. Better yet, find several. Then choose one of them, and put .75 ounce of it in your shaker.
Step Five: Rinse Your Glass
Before you shake your cocktail, you need to prep your glassware (remember Rule No. 2). In this case, that means you need to pour your teaspoon of absinthe (or a pastis like Pernod or Ricard), into your coupe and swirl it around to coat the inside. This is called “rinsing” a glass, and once you do a sufficient amount of swirling, you can toss (or drink) the excess absinthe.
Step Six: Shake
Finally, shake everything hard for about 15 seconds, and pour the Corpse Reviver into your absinthe-rinsed coupe. Garnish with a lemon twist, then sit back and don’t resist the urge to drink this in about two minutes. You can always make another. And another.