22 of the Most Popular Sour Cocktails to Try at Home

October 26, 2022 by Anna-Bet Stemmet

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Sour cocktails are a fascinating thing – ‘sour’ is historically a funny word to associate with food and drinks, but in the case of cocktails it’s actually an amazingly delicious sub-category of mixed drinks that are utterly divine.  

Here are 22 must-try sour cocktail recipes that are sure to up the ante on your DIY drinks repertoire in a big way:   

1. Whiskey Sour cocktail

Whiskey Sour Cocktail

Learning how to pull off a Whiskey Sour cocktail with egg white should be a rite of passage for every newbie cocktail maker. This sweet, slightly tart drink is an absolute classic with its retro foam topping, and a real game-changer in terms of mouthfeel and texture. 

Egg white? Yes! Your Guide to Making Egg White Cocktails the Easy Way 

2. Pisco Sour cocktail

Pisco Sour Cocktail

Hailing from pretty Peru, the Pisco Sour cocktail is an earthy and refreshing drink featuring pisco (a white Peruvian brandy made from Muscadel grapes), lime, egg white and sugar as ingredients. It also happens to be the national cocktail of both Peru and Chile. 

3. Amaretto Sour cocktail

How to Make an Amaretto Sour

The lovely Amaretto Sour cocktail is a nutty spin-off of the classic Whiskey Sour which incorporates an almond-flavoured liqueur that comes to the party with rich notes of vanilla and a subtly bitter finish. We love serving this as an after-dinner drink with a cheese platter and plenty of dark, red fruit like plums and grapes. 

4. Classic Margarita cocktail

Top image of refreshing and citrusy Lime Margarita Cocktails

The amazingly zingy Lime Margarita is the OG drink that initially started the full-blown Margarita craze. Combining tequila, Grand Marnier, lime juice and agave syrup, it pairs well with all sorts of tasty canapes and main meals. As such, it’s a great trick to have up your hosting sleeve. 

Want to go low ABV? Meet Our Foxy Margarita Mocktail

5. Tequila Sour cocktail

Two tequila sours on a cloth

Tequila summer cocktails do not come any more iconic than this. The Tequila Sour is the quintessential mashup between a classy 1920s sour cocktail and a tasty modern-day Margarita that waltzes the fine line between vintage and trendy, with plenty of lemony-lime appeal.  

6. Sour Cherry French 75 cocktail

Sour Cherry French 75

We love a sour cherry cocktail, and the Sour Cherry French 75 is completely marvellous. This variation on the traditional French 75 cocktail recipe calls for 60ml Bulldog Gin, 20ml fresh lemon juice, 20ml sour cherry syrup, 60ml Prosecco, and optional maraschino cherries or a lemon twist to garnish. The cherry syrup adds a lovely blush-coloured seasonal twist that makes it super photogenic (a fantastic Insta-opportunity for sure!). 

7. Gold Rush cocktail

Gold Rush cocktail

First invented in New York Bar called Milk and Honey before the American Prohibition rolled around, the Gold Rush cocktail is similar to the Bee’s Knees but replaces gin with bourbon. Straightforward, sophisticated, and refreshing, it’s the perfect pre-dinner serve for your next summer party. 

8. Clover Club cocktail

Clover Club Cocktail

Tangy, frothy, bright pink, and pretty as a picture, the Clover Club cocktail is an excellent option for gin lovers who want to expand their drinks repertoire and a fantastic all-rounder drink that suits just about any occasion. We love it as a signature cocktail at weddings simply because it’s so lovely to look at. 

9. Gimlet cocktail

Gimlet Cocktail Recipe

Ostensibly first invented to help sailors stave off scurvy, this delightfully sweet and sour cocktail combines gin, lime juice, simple syrup, and an optional splash of club soda. The great thing about the easy list of Gimlet ingredients is that you can really adapt this drink to suit your taste by using vodka or tequila as your base spirit and experimenting with muddle ingredients such as basil and cucumber. 

10. Classic Mojito cocktail

Virgin Mojito with a yellow straw, mint and sliced lime

To whip up an authentic Mojito, you combine a few indigenous Cuban ingredients to create a sweet, sparkly sip. It’s so easy – all you need is white rum, lime, mint, sugar, and a little club soda for a fizzy finish. 

Make it a mocktail: Make Our Summer Ready Virgin Strawberry Mojito 

11. New York Sour cocktail

New York Sour Cocktail

An IBA official cocktail, the New York Sour cocktail hails from the mid-19th century. Adding red wine to the base of a classic Whiskey Sour imparts a deep red colour and striking aromatic qualities that make for a wonderfully complex flavour profile without being too finicky to shake up on the fly. 

12. Gin Sour cocktail

Gin Sour

Light, refreshing, and with a lot of character, the Gin Sour cocktail comes together with 60ml of Bulldog Gin, 30ml fresh lemon juice, 15ml simple syrup, 15ml egg white, and a few dashes of bitters. The egg white makes a luscious foam, but you can also skip it if you aren’t keen on the idea – the drink is equally fantastic without it. 

13. Lemon Drop Martini cocktail

Lemon Drop Martini

The Lemon Drop Martini is a festive sour serve if ever there was one. With a perky attitude and a glittery sugar rim, this perfectly balanced and refreshingly tart drink had its origins in the heydays of the 1970s and was named after a zesty candy that was equally popular at the time. 

14. White Lady cocktail

Two White Lady cocktails with lemon garnish

While the original White Lady cocktail was made with crème de menthe, it eventually changed to gin. This is combined with orange liqueur and lemon juice and is then shaken with an egg white. The result is gin-laced sour with lots of zest and is a great cocktail to enjoy after an indulgent meal.   

15. Gin Fizz cocktail

Gin Fizz

Beautifully refreshing and light, a classic Gin Fizz calls for 60ml Bulldog Gin, 30ml oz fresh lemon juice, 1 teaspoon powdered sugar, 120ml club soda, and a lemon slice to garnish. You can also tailor the drink to your liking by using an infused gin or opting for flavoured sparkling mineral water.  

16. Southside cocktail

Southside Cocktail - The Southside Cocktail, a homemade and refreshing minty delight.

The minty-cool Southside Cocktail is made with gin, fresh mint, and a touch of citrus. We love using lime or lemon, but you could also shake things up by opting for orange, or even blood orange. In fact, you could also add a few dashes of bitters for a lingering aromatic note on the finish. 

17. Cosmopolitan cocktail

Front view of the best refreshing Cosmopolitan cocktails

The always sultry Cosmopolitan cocktail is sweet with a touch of tang from the lime. It tastes of cranberry juice with orange notes from the Grand Marnier and sips like a dream even though on the stronger end of the drinks spectrum. 

18. Vodka Sour cocktail

Vodka Sour Cocktail

The iconic Vodka Sour combines vodka, lemon juice, simple syrup, grenadine, and bitters that are shaken with ice and strained into a rocks glass. Very easy to make and even easier to enjoy! 

19. Sidecar Cocktail

Top view of a Sidecar cocktail garnished with fresh orange peel

The iconic Sidecar cocktail combines a good Cognac, a decent orange liqueur like Grand Marnier, and freshly squeezed lemon juice. Make sure to serve it in a chilled glass, and finish your Sidecar cocktail by twisting a piece of orange peel over the glass so the zesty oils will sprinkle into your drink.

20. Paloma

Close front view of a trio of refreshing pink paloma cocktails with grapefruit garnish

If you’re looking for a bright and bubbly cocktail, the Paloma is a perfect choice. Made with Espolón Tequila Blanco, fresh grapefruit and lime juice, agave syrup, and soda water, this drink is a refreshing twist on the classic Margarita. Garnished with a wedge of grapefruit, the Paloma has a sweet and sour flavour that is both tangy and refreshing.

Learn more: A Beginner’s Guide to the Different Types of Tequila

21. Lime Daiquiri

Classic Lime Daiquiri in coupe glass garnished with lime

The classic Lime Daiquiri uses only three simple ingredients, and the recipe is a delicate balance between the sweet and the sour. It’s a fresh and straightforward lime cocktail that is very similar to a Classic Margarita in that you’ll be using fresh lime juice and sugar syrup, but instead of tequila, you’ll be using light rum.

22. Tom Collins

Two ice-cold glasses of Tom Collins cocktail against a wooden backdrop garnished with lemon slices and cherries

Sour cocktails don’t get easier than the simple Tom Collins. This iconic highball is a variation of the classic Gin Sour, and the ideal drink to clink when the weather is balmy and you want something ice cold, tall, and delicious to sip at leisure.

Other tasty cocktail avenues to explore

Two grapefruit and cucumber gin cocktalis

If the sour cocktail lineup has you excited to get your shaker out, here are a few other tasty mixed drink avenues to explore when you’re feeling adventurous:

The Best Gin Cocktails Ever Invented
9 Bourbon-Based Summer Cocktails to Beat the Heat
Pop the Cork: Our Best Cocktails with Champagne
15 Totally Tropical Pineapple Juice Cocktails
10 Simple Cognac Cocktails to Impress Your Friends

We recommend that you start from the top and make them all one at a time so you can find your ultimate cocktail recipe favourite. So, get shaking and sipping, and remember to tag The Mixer in your pics.


Traditionally, a sour is a mixed drink that contains a base liquor, lemon or lime juice, and a sweetener (simple syrup or orgeat syrup). Egg whites are also included in some sours.

At its most elementary, the term ‘sour’ is used to describe a class of cocktails that feature a spirit, lemon juice, sugar and water for dilution, usually in the form of ice.

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