Making party-worthy cocktails at home can be intimidating. Fancy craft cocktails often require several expensive or hard-to-find ingredients, and when you’re just trying to make a few cocktails at home, it’s not very realistic to pay for a full-sized bottle of some niche liqueur when you only need five tablespoons.
But two-ingredient cocktails? You can totally make those at home, even if you have no cocktail experience. The most popular options are everywhere — think gin and tonics or mimosas — but there’s a whole world of two-ingredient party cocktails out there that are much more elevated than the classic G and T, yet just as easy to make.
These cocktails are ideal for serving at gatherings. They don’t take too much effort to prepare, but with ingredients like crème de cassis and amaretto, they will impress the heck out of your guests. Two-ingredient cocktails are also a lot more economical than cocktails with a long list of ingredients. You only have to buy two bottles, and you’ll get plenty of use out of each one.
When you want to impress your guests and keep it simple at the same time, try your hand at one of these party-worthy cocktails made with only two ingredients.
This 1970s drink is named after — you guessed it — The Godfather, perhaps because it contains amaretto, a sweet Italian liqueur. This drink is spirit-forward and strong, but the scotch is softened by the sweet almond flavor of the amaretto. Both of these ingredients can be found at most liquor stores. The Godfather is a slow sipper, great for a classy evening party.
This party-worthy cocktail recipe calls for equal parts amaretto and scotch, which results in a sweeter flavor. If you prefer the scotch to shine through more, you can reduce the amaretto to a 1/4 ounce.
1.5 ounces scotch whiskey
1.5 ounces amaretto
Fill a mixing glass 2/3 full with ice. Add the ingredients. Stir until chilled, then strain into an ice-filled rocks glass.
The kir was first popularized in Burgundy, France, in the mid-19th century. It features two very French ingredients: wine and crème de cassis. Crème de cassis is a tart liqueur made from macerated blackcurrants. It’s not very common in the U.S., but a range of brands are available in select wine and liquor stores. Popular brands include Briottet, Lejay, Clear Creek Drillaud, Mathilde and Giffard. (And if you’re at a loss, you can substitute raspberry liqueur.)
The drink is berry-flavored, sweet and not too strong. It’s great for washing down any salty snacks or appetizers that you serve at your party. For a more festive variation of this party-worthy cocktail, replace the dry white wine with sparkling wine or champagne.
Pour the crème de cassis into a wine glass. Then slowly add the dry white wine. That’s it!
Rainwater Madeira and tonic
Madeira is an aged fortified wine that comes from the Madeira islands. It has a long history in the U.S. — it was even present at George Washington’s inauguration! Though less popular now, Madeira remains affordable and relatively easy to find in wine stores, and Rainwater Madeira is one of the most popular varieties for mixing cocktails.
This party-worthy cocktail mixes Rainwater Madeira with tonic for a sweet, refreshing and low-alcohol drink that is ideal for summertime soirees. It’s an easy sipper, yet features complex and interesting flavors.