Archangel Cocktail Recipe

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Archangel Nutrition Facts





Alcohol percent:20

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 Archangel cocktail is a modern classic, created by bartender Michael McIlroy at the renowned Milk & Honey bar in New York City. This refreshing and sophisticated gin-based cocktail is a favorite among gin enthusiasts and those who appreciate a well-balanced, herbal drink.

  • The Archangel was created in the early 2000s
  • It quickly gained popularity among the cocktail community
  • It is often enjoyed during the warmer months, as its refreshing taste is perfect for sipping on a sunny day

How Archangel Tastes?

The Archangel cocktail is a harmonious blend of herbal, citrus, and slightly bitter flavors. The gin provides a strong, juniper-forward base, while the Aperol adds a touch of bitterness and sweetness. The cucumber and lemon bring a refreshing, crisp, and bright element to the drink.

Interesting facts about Archangel

  • The name 'Archangel' is thought to be a nod to the heavenly balance of flavors in the cocktail
  • The use of Aperol, an Italian aperitif, gives the drink a beautiful orange hue
  • The Archangel is sometimes compared to a more complex, herbal version of a classic Gin and Tonic


A few good options for Archangel are:

  • Brockmans
  • Silent Pool Gin
  • Hendrick's Gin

Learn everything on which Gin to choose

GIN (2oz)

The gin is the spirit backbone of the Archangel; it infuses the drink with botanical notes that can include juniper, coriander, citrus peel, and other herbs and spices. The specified amount ensures the cocktail remains balanced, without overpowering the subtler flavors of Aperol and cucumber. If we dial it down, we risk a too mellow profile, and if we pump it up, the gin might steal the show.

Alex Green

APEROL (0.75oz)

Aperol gives the cocktail a slightly bitter, herbaceous twist and its signature rosy hue. It's not as aggressive as Campari, hence the moderate amount keeps things interesting without hijacking the palate. Using less might leave you wondering where the punch is; using more could overshadow the gin and lemon juice.

Mary Mitkina


The lemon juice adds a zing of acidity and freshness to cut through the richness of the gin and the sweetness of the Aperol. A careful balance is struck with half an ounce to ensure the cocktail doesn't swing too sour. Skip it, and the Archangel might turn into a fallen angel, lacking the brightness it's revered for.

Emma Rose

CUCUMBER (2 slices)

Cucumber provides a cool, refreshing note that makes the Archangel an ethereal experience. It's sort of like the 'cool as a cucumber' sidekick in a buddy movie, helping to keep everything mellow. Overdoing the cucumber could swamp the delicate interplay of flavors, while its absence could leave the drink feeling one-note.

Alex Green

Recipe. How to make Archangel Drink

  1. In a cocktail shaker, muddle the cucumber slices
  2. Add the gin, Aperol, and lemon juice
  3. Fill the shaker with ice and shake well
  4. Double strain the mixture into a chilled coupe glass
  5. Garnish with a cucumber slice or lemon twist

Pro Tips

  • Muddle the cucumber slices well to extract maximum flavor
  • Chill the glass before pouring the cocktail to keep it cool longer
  • Use a high-quality gin for a smoother taste

Perfect Pairings


  • Charcuterie Boards: A spread of cured meats, artisan cheeses, and olives complements the botanicals in the gin and the bitterness of the Aperol.
  • Sushi: The light and refreshing flavors of sushi pair exceptionally well with the crispness of this cocktail.
  • Bruschetta: Tomato, basil, and mozzarella on toasted bread will echo the Italian flair of Aperol and the fresh cucumber in the Archangel.

Main Courses

  • Grilled Seafood: Delicate fish dishes with a squeeze of lemon bring out the zesty notes in the Archangel.
  • Pasta with Cream Sauce: The creaminess of the pasta is balanced by the acidity from the lemon juice and the herbal notes of the gin.


  • Lemon Sorbet: A zesty dessert that will highlight the fresh flavors of the cocktail's lemon juice component.

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What you could change in Archangel

  • Gin: Can be replaced with vodka for a less herbal flavor
  • Aperol: Campari can be used for a more bitter taste
  • Cucumber: Fresh mint leaves can be used for a different refreshing twist

Explore all drinks starting with A here

And of course - twists🍹

Cucumber-Basil Smash

  • Ingredients: Replace Aperol with St. Germain. Add a handful of fresh basil leaves.
  • Recipe: Muddle basil leaves with cucumber before adding the gin and St. Germain. Shake with ice and strain into a glass.
  • Flavor Change: This twist introduces a floral sweetness with the St. Germain, and the basil adds a peppery, aromatic quality, creating a more herbaceous and sweet cocktail.

Spicy Archangel

  • Ingredients: Keep original ingredients but add 2 dashes of hot sauce.
  • Recipe: After muddling cucumber, add in the hot sauce with the remaining ingredients and shake well. Strain and serve with a chili salt rim.
  • Flavor Change: Adding hot sauce gives the Archangel a devilish kick that heats up the palate, balancing the cool cucumber and sweet Aperol.

Archangel Fizz

  • Ingredients: Add an egg white and replace still water with club soda.
  • Recipe: Muddle cucumber, then add gin, Aperol, and lemon juice with egg white into shaker. Dry shake, then shake with ice, strain, and top with club soda.
  • Flavor Change: The egg white gives the cocktail a silky texture and a foamy top, while the club soda adds a refreshing carbonation, lightening up the cocktail for a different mouthfeel.

In case you forgot basics how to make Archangel

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

The key to proper muddling is to crush the ingredients just enough to release their flavors and not overdo it. Over-muddling can result in a bitter taste, especially with herbs.

Learn everything on how to muddle

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 Archangel

What is Aperol made from?

Aperol is a classic Italian aperitif and is made from an infusion of herbs and roots. Its distinctive orange hue is achieved by the addition of food-grade coloring.

Why does muddling the cucumber matter in this cocktail?

Muddling the cucumber helps release the cucumber's juices into the cocktail, giving it a fresh and crisp taste. It also allows the cucumber to mix with the other flavors more effectively.

Can I use any type of gin for the Archangel cocktail?

While you can technically use any type of gin, it's recommended to use a high-quality, juniper-forward gin to achieve the best flavor balance. Lower-quality gins may result in a less satisfying cocktail.

Why do I need to shake the cocktail?

Shaking the cocktail serves a couple of important purposes. It chills and dilutes the drink, and it also helps mix the ingredients together thoroughly.

Can I make the Archangel cocktail in advance?

While you can mix the ingredients together in advance, it's best to serve the cocktail immediately after shaking and straining for the freshest taste and optimal temperature.

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