Cocktail of the Month: The Aviation

A gin cocktail for the coming warm weather

I am happy to report (if only for its reputation) that the month of March has lived up to the hype, and has in fact come in like a lion. In a couple of weeks we’ll be able to confirm that it went out like a lamb, but that’s a report for another, sweeter time. With the harshness that March can sometimes bring in terms of weather, I find that I need to assure myself that spring really is coming soon by jumping into my spring cocktail repertoire. What is this repertoire made up of, you ask? Why gin, of course!

One of my favorite cocktails of all time, and this month’s Cocktail of the Month, is the Aviation, for a variety of reasons. First, the inclusion of gin in any cocktail is so necessary for the warm-weather months, and what better way to show off the flavors of a London Dry than with some lemon juice and cherry liqueur? Second, I find this cocktail is incredibly approachable when it comes to switching from winter libations to spring drinks. It’s slightly bitter, which is what many of us enjoy when it’s cold out, but it’s also crisp and refreshing — two things that are perfect for a spring cocktail.

For this cocktail, as with any, it’s important to focus on quality. Since there are only three ingredients, they should be the best ingredients you can find. Of these three ingredients, the one to be the most careful with, is the Maraschino. This is not to be confused with the red sticky liquid that accompanies maraschino cherries in the jar. Maraschino is a quality bitter cherry cordial that can be purchased at any wine and spirits store, so it shouldn’t be too much of a struggle to put this drink together in no time, satisfaction guaranteed.

Read on for a recipe for the perfect Aviation cocktail, provided by the ever-wonderful Dave Wondrich. Let us know what you think, and tell us about your favorite gin cocktails in the comments section. Cheers!

Click here for the Aviation recipe.


— Sara Kay, The