Adonis Cocktail Recipe

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Adonis Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Adonis cocktail is a classic drink that dates back to the late 19th century. It was named after the Broadway musical 'Adonis,' which was a hit in the 1880s. The cocktail is a low-alcohol, refreshing mix of sherry, vermouth, and bitters, making it a popular choice for those who enjoy lighter drinks.

  • Originated in the late 19th century
  • Named after a Broadway musical
  • Popular choice for those who prefer lighter drinks

How Adonis Tastes?

The Adonis cocktail is light, refreshing, and slightly sweet with a hint of bitterness. The combination of sherry and vermouth creates a complex and well-balanced flavor profile.

Interesting facts about Adonis

  • The Adonis is considered an aperitif, which is a drink typically served before a meal to stimulate the appetite
  • The cocktail is often garnished with an orange twist, which adds a touch of citrus aroma
  • The Adonis is a low-alcohol cocktail, making it a great option for daytime or early evening drinking


Fino Sherry

Fino sherry is a dry, light-bodied sherry that gives the Adonis its refreshing character. Using 2 oz strikes a perfect balance between strength and subtlety. Too much and it might overshadow the vermouth; too little and it loses its backbone.

Mary Mitkina

Sweet Vermouth

The 1 oz of sweet vermouth adds a lovely sweetness and depth, complementing the sherry beautifully. Vermouth brings herbal and spicy notes that round out the cocktail. Neglecting it would make the drink too dry and unbalanced.

Alex Green

Orange Bitters

A couple of dashes of orange bitters provide a subtle citrusy spice, tying the sherry and vermouth together. Without the bitters, the cocktail would lack complexity and that zesty punch. They're the secret spice of life here!

Emma Rose

Orange Twist

The orange twist is not just for show; it releases essential oils that add a fragrant aroma, enhancing the sensory experience. Skipping it would mean missing out on that delightful citrus nose.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Adonis Drink

  1. Chill a cocktail glass by filling it with ice and water, then set aside
  2. In a mixing glass, combine the Fino sherry, sweet vermouth, and orange bitters
  3. Fill the mixing glass with ice and stir well to chill and dilute the mixture
  4. Empty the chilled cocktail glass and strain the mixture into it
  5. Garnish with an orange twist by expressing the oils over the drink and placing it on the rim of the glass

Pro Tips

  • Use fresh ingredients. The quality of your ingredients can greatly affect the taste of your cocktail.
  • Chill your glassware. This helps to keep your drink cold for longer.
  • Stir, don't shake. This cocktail is best when stirred, not shaken, to prevent over-dilution.

Perfect Pairings


The Adonis cocktail pairs beautifully with Spanish tapas such as Marcona almonds, olives, and jamón serrano. Its light and slightly fruity profile complements the saltiness of these snacks.


Consider pairing this sherry-based drink with seafood dishes like grilled shrimp or oysters on the half shell. The Adonis has a dry edge that cuts through the richness of seafood.


Cheese boards featuring Manchego, Idiazábal, or even some aged cheddar work well. The nutty and herbal notes in the cocktail will highlight the complexity of these cheeses.

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What you could change in Adonis

  • Fino sherry: Can be substituted with any dry sherry.
  • Sweet vermouth: Can be replaced with dry vermouth for a less sweet cocktail.
  • Orange bitters: If unavailable, Angostura bitters can be used as a substitute.

Explore all drinks starting with A here

And of course - twists🍹

Rosado Adonis

  • Substitute Fino sherry with a dry Rosé wine.
  • Add 0.5 oz of elderflower liqueur for a floral note.
  • Follow the standard recipe. The Rosado Adonis offers a florally fragrant twist with a hint of sweetness introduced by the elderflower liqueur. This variation is perfect for a summer garden party.

Autumn Adonis

  • Replace sweet vermouth with a spiced vermouth.
  • Include an orange slice steeped in cloves as garnish.
  • Stir in a cinnamon stick while mixing. The Autumn Adonis captures the essence of fall, featuring warm spices that would soothe your soul on a chilly evening.

Adonis Royale

  • After pouring the cocktail into the glass, top with a splash of Champagne.
  • Add a lemon twist instead of the orange.
  • Follow the original recipe for the other ingredients. Extra bubbly and with a twist of lemon, the Adonis Royale elevates the traditional recipe to a celebratory concoction ideal for toasting to life's special moments.

In case you forgot basics how to make Adonis

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

Insert the spoon into the glass until it touches the bottom. Keep the back of the spoon against the inside wall of the glass, and stir in a smooth, circular motion. The goal is to swirl the ice and ingredients together without churning or splashing.

Learn everything on how to stir

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Adonis

What's the best way to measure out the cocktail ingredients?

A jigger or a measuring cup can be used to measure out the ingredients accurately. The key is to ensure the right balance of flavors.

Can I use a different garnish other than the orange twist?

Certainly! While the orange twist adds a nice citrusy aroma, you could replace it with a cherry, a lime wheel, or even a cocktail onion. Just keep in mind that the garnish can subtly change the cocktail's flavor.

What is the best way to express oils from the orange twist?

You can express oils by gently twisting or pinching the orange peel over the glass, which will release its aromatic oils onto the surface of the drink.

What's the main difference between stirring and shaking a cocktail?

Stirring a cocktail generally results in a clearer drink and is used for spirit-forward cocktails. Shaking is used when cocktails contain ingredients like fruit juice, cream or egg whites, which need vigorous mixing.

How do I know if my sherry or vermouth is dry?

You can typically find this information on the label. Dry sherry or vermouth will have a lower sugar content and a more crisp, tart flavor.

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