You may not realize it, but you’re probably already familiar with “equal parts” drinks—cocktails with ingredients measured out in precisely equal amounts. Bartenders have been making these drinks for years, knowing that they can pour in a flash. Not to mention, it makes memorizing formulas that much easier.
Now it’s your turn to try your hand at it with drinks you already know and love or will want to get to know better. These drinks are great for the home bartender precisely because of their simplicity. Here are eight favorites. (For more equal-parters, check out my book Shake. Stir. Sip.)
This ruby-hued classic marries equal parts gin, Campari and sweet vermouth, and is nearly impossible to mess up. It's often served over the rocks with a swath of orange peel, but no one will judge if you prefer yours “up.”
2. 50/50 Martini
This is an old-school drink, newly repopularized as the Fitty-Fitty. Stir together equal parts gin and dry vermouth, and strain into a chilled Martini glass. A word of advice: This skews a bit sweeter than the standard, so go for a twist instead of an olive to garnish.
3. Last Word
Detroit claims this drink originated more than a century ago at the Detroit Athletic Club; Seattle claims this drink was reborn at the Zig Zig Café, thanks to barkeep Murray Stenson. We’re just glad this bracing mix of equal parts gin, Green Chartreuse, lime juice and maraschino liqueur is back on cocktail menus across the globe.
4. Paper Plane
Created by Sam Ross, now a partner at New York’s Attaboy, this colorful riff on the classic Last Word combines equal parts bourbon, Aperol, lemon juice and Amaro Nonino. It’s ideal for those who enjoy whiskey but prefer not to sip it straight.
5. Corpse Reviver No. 2
This enduring pre-Prohibition classic is a saucy mix of equal parts gin, lemon juice, Lillet Blanc and Cointreau, plus absinthe to rinse the glass. Yes, there’s also a Corpse Reviver No. 1, but this bracing mix is far superior.
Bacardí brand ambassador Jacob Briars created this drink as a joke, but it has become a popular order, so he gets the last laugh. To make this, simply swap the Cointreau for blue curaçao, another type of orange liqueur. Sum total: equal parts gin, lemon juice, Lillet Blanc, blue curaçao, plus the absinthe rinse.
7. Point Reyes Punch
What do dry vermouth, white rum, lemon juice and pineapple syrup have in common? Give up? There's an ounce of each in this stellar sweet, tart cocktail.
Talk about the sum of its parts. This easy-drinking, low-alcohol sipper is definitely worth giving a spin. Made with equal parts fino sherry and sweet vermouth, it pairs beautifully with tapas and other savory bites.