Fly Away With An Aviation Cocktail

Let's Grub With Doc Bill | 0 comments


Aviation – Classy and sophisticated with a little sweet, and a little tart. The perfect way to describe the Aviation cocktail.  This tasty cocktail created in the early 20th Century is still popular today. It is the mastermind of Hugo Ensslin, the head bartender at the Hotel Wallick in New York. His recipe called for 1 1/2 oz of El Bart Gin, 3/4 oz of lemon juice, two dashes of cherry Maraschino Liqueur, two dashes of Creme de Violette.

I had my first Aviation at Holeman and Finch Public House, a neighborhood restaurant in Atlanta.  Entrepreneur, Executive Chef and owner, Linton Hopkins has created an eatery with unique dishes using local ingredients. With a menu focused on fresh foods, you’ll find something new each time your visit.  The bartenders know the latest creative mixtures and have a great appreciation for traditional cocktails. The absolute best place to try some of the old favorites from yesterday.

After looking over the cocktail menu, I wanted to try an Aviation; after all, we are a travel folks, traveling all the time. Curious, I wanted to know, “What is this cocktail all about?” Annita had not heard of it, and she was a flight attendant! So I had to order it, and that was the start of my love of this simple and easy to make refreshing drink.

With most food and drink, I like to switch it up a bit and make it my own. I decided to try a frozen Aviation. It is perfect! I would love to share my version of the sophisticated drink. It’s less sweet and more tart than the traditional recipe. I think you’ll find it refreshing and a perfect match for your cocktail snacks.

Doc Bill's Aviation (2)

Ingredients for Doc Bill’s Frozen Aviation

aviation cocktail ingredients

Ingredients: Gin, Maraschino Cherry Liqueur, Crème de Violette, and lemon juice. I always use local products. Here I use gin from the St. Augustine Distillery in St. Augustine, FL. You may use your favorite brand.

Here’s how you make Doc Bill’s delicious version!

One oz (shot) of Gin
Two shots of Maraschino Cherry Liqueur
1/2 shot of Creme de Violette
Juice of two lemons
Two cups of ice

Place all ingredients in a mixer (Vita-Mix)
Blend until fine
Add a lemon twist or Brandied cherry for garnish

My recipe makes four servings.  I place the leftover portion in a mason freezer jar for a ready-made drink the next day.

aviation - frozen

Use a mason jar to freeze any extra.  When you’re ready for your next one, let it sit for approximately ten mins. to thaw a little and you’re enjoying another Aviation cocktail in no time.


Doc Bill's Aviation


The traditional Aviation recipe:

If you still want the traditional Aviation, Annita learned how to make it at the Monte Carlo Hotel in Vegas with Mixologist Philip Dow. The MLife program offers classes to learn the history of cocktails and the tips of mixing – all hands-on from start to finish.  Here’s Philip’s recipe from the Hit Bar in the Monte Carlo.

1 3/4 oz Gin
1 oz Maraschino Liqueur
1 oz fresh lemon
1/2 oz Creme de Violette
Garnish – Brandied Cherry

Here’s how you mix it all together.

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice right from the freezer.  Pour all ingredients into the shaker including the lemon juice.
Give it a good shake and strain into a cold cocktail glass.  Place a brandied cherry in the glass for garnish.

Philip Dow

Mixologist Philip Dow shakes an Aviation to perfection! Philip shared a great tip.  Use ice right out of the freezer.  Ice sitting and melting will make drinks watery and more diluted.

Ready to give it a try?

You’ll need some tools.  Here’s a link!

And, with your new bar set, try an Aviation or many others included in this bookYou’ll want the traditional champagne/cocktail glass.  Here’s a link:


Author:  Doc Bill.  Co-host,  culture & culinary expert. Co-owner of Georgia Coast Gourmet Farms where unique organic produce & heirloom plants are studied and grown.  


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