American Beauty Cocktail Recipe

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American Beauty 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 American Beauty cocktail is a classic pre-prohibition era drink that has been enjoyed by many for over a century. It is said to have been created in the early 1900s in New York City and quickly gained popularity among the high society. This elegant cocktail is perfect for those who appreciate the finer things in life and enjoy a well-balanced, sophisticated drink.

  • Origin: New York City, early 1900s
  • Popular among high society
  • A classic pre-prohibition era cocktail

How American Beauty Tastes?

The American Beauty is a harmonious blend of sweet, fruity, and floral flavors with a hint of tartness. The combination of brandy, orange liqueur, and vermouth creates a rich and complex base, while the grenadine and lemon juice add a touch of sweetness and acidity. The result is a smooth, well-balanced, and refreshing cocktail.

Interesting facts about American Beauty

  • The American Beauty is often served in a coupe glass, which was popular during the pre-prohibition era.
  • The cocktail is named after the American Beauty rose, a popular and fragrant flower during the early 1900s.
  • The American Beauty is sometimes garnished with a cherry or an orange twist to enhance its visual appeal and add a touch of elegance.



Brandy, typically derived from distilled wine, provides a robust and fruit-forward base for this classic cocktail. Going overboard can lead to a dominant alcohol burn, while skimping on brandy might result in a flat cocktail experience. It’s the soul of the drink, so no skipping!

Mary Mitkina

Orange Liqueur

Half an ounce is just enough to add a citrusy kick without turning the cocktail into an orange grove. Too much, and the sweet citrus could overpower; too little, and you miss the essence of zest.

Emma Rose

Sweet Vermouth

Its herbaceous and sweet profile blends with brandy, playing up the cocktail’s complexity. An imbalance could make your drink either too herbaceous or too underwhelming.

Alex Green


Just a teaspoon, serving up a hint of sweetness and a dash of color. Overdo it, and your cocktail is candy. Forget it, and you lose that touch of sweetness that plays so nicely with the tart elements.

Mary Mitkina

Lemon Juice

This sour component is essential to balance the sweetness, creating a harmony in the glass. Overdo the lemon, and your lips might pucker in protest; don't use enough, and the cocktail might be too sweet.

Emma Rose

Chilled Champagne

The effervescence brings a celebratory spirit to the mix. Too much champagne can dilute the rich flavors, but if you omit it, you'll miss out on the bubbly fun that makes this cocktail a beauty.

Alex Green

Maraschino Cherry

One cherry is the edible jewel on the crown, adding a chewy treat and a hint of almond-like flavor. Without it, the drink keeps its charm, but you'll miss the fun of fishing for the boozy berry at the bottom of the glass.

Mary Mitkina

Orange Twist

It's all about aromatics. The twist ensures a burst of orange aroma with every sip. Missing the twist wouldn't be a catastrophe, but you'd lose a layer of sensory delight.

Emma Rose

Recipe. How to make American Beauty Drink

  1. In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, combine the brandy, orange liqueur, sweet vermouth, grenadine, and lemon juice.
  2. Shake well until chilled and well-mixed.
  3. Strain the mixture into a chilled coupe glass.
  4. Top with the chilled champagne.
  5. Garnish with a maraschino cherry and an orange twist.

Pro Tips

  • Chill your glass before serving to keep the cocktail cool longer.
  • Use freshly squeezed lemon juice for a better taste.
  • Don't overdo it with the grenadine, it should enhance the cocktail's flavor, not overpower it.

Perfect Pairings


  • Cheese Plates: Specifically those with aged cheeses like Gouda or Cheddar, which complement the nutty and fruity notes of the brandy.
  • Seafood Canapés: Think shrimp or crab based appetizers that will play nice with the citrusy notes brought on by the orange liqueur and lemon juice.
  • Bruschetta: Tomato-based bruschettas can offer a sweet and tangy contrast, balancing the sweetness of the grenadine and vermouth.

Main Courses

  • Duck a l'Orange: Echoes the orange flavors in the cocktail and provides a rich pairing.
  • Pork Tenderloin: The natural sweetness and the tender texture of pork tenderloin complements the sweet and citrus notes of the cocktail.


  • Dark Chocolate: The bitterness of dark chocolate will nicely counteract the sweetness of the cocktail.
  • Berry Tart: The berry flavors work well with the fruity notes of the grenadine and cherry.

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What you could change in American Beauty

  • Brandy: Can be replaced with cognac or armagnac.
  • Orange Liqueur: Triple sec or Cointreau can be used.
  • Sweet Vermouth: Dry vermouth can be used for a less sweet cocktail.
  • Chilled Champagne: Prosecco or other sparkling wines can be used.

Explore all drinks starting with A here

And of course - twists🍹

Cranberry Beauty

  • Swap grenadine for cranberry syrup for a tart twist and add a sprig of rosemary for garnish.
  • You’ll get a drink with a festive zing, perfect for holiday cheer and a touch of herbal sophistication.

Southern Belle

  • Replace champagne with bourbon for a deeper American South influence.
  • The substitution pushes the cocktail towards a more spirited territory, warm and bold, definitely for those who love a stronger kick.

Tropical Beauty

  • Use pineapple juice instead of orange liqueur and top with coconut water instead of champagne.
  • The result is a summery and exotic take, taking you on a mini-vacation with each sip as it introduces tropical sweetness and a creamy sensation.

In case you forgot basics how to make American Beauty

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

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

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 American Beauty

What type of Brandy is best for the American Beauty cocktail?

Typically, a high-quality aged Brandy works well for the American Beauty cocktail. However, the choice ultimately depends on personal preferences.

Can I use another type of fruit liqueur if I don't have Orange Liqueur?

Yes, you can use other fruit liqueurs instead of orange, but keep in mind that each type of liqueur will significantly change the flavor profile of the cocktail.

What other garnishes can I use apart from Maraschino Cherry and Orange Twist?

While maraschino cherry and orange twist are traditional, you could also use other citrus twists, a dash of bitters on top, or even a sugar rim for additional complexity.

What type of glassware can be used if I don't have a coupe glass?

If you don't have a coupe glass, you could also use a martini glass or any other wide-brimmed glass.

Does the American Beauty cocktail pair well with any particular food?

Its fruity and floral notes pairs well with light appetizers like cheeses, fruits, or seafood.

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