Roosevelt Cocktail Recipe

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Roosevelt 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 Roosevelt cocktail is named after the 32nd President of the United States, Franklin D. Roosevelt. It is said that he enjoyed this cocktail during his time in office. The Roosevelt cocktail is a classic and elegant drink that has been enjoyed by many over the years.

  • The cocktail was popular during the Prohibition era
  • It is believed that President Roosevelt enjoyed this cocktail while entertaining guests at the White House
  • The Roosevelt cocktail has stood the test of time and remains a popular choice for cocktail enthusiasts

How Roosevelt Tastes?

The Roosevelt cocktail has a well-balanced taste with a hint of sweetness and a touch of sourness. It is a strong and bold drink with a smooth finish.

Interesting facts about Roosevelt

  • The Roosevelt cocktail is sometimes called the 'President's Cocktail'
  • It is believed that President Roosevelt enjoyed this cocktail while entertaining guests at the White House
  • The Roosevelt cocktail has stood the test of time and remains a popular choice for cocktail enthusiasts


Bourbon: 2oz

Used for its rich and full-bodied flavor, bourbon is the backbone of this cocktail. Less might make you miss its oaky charm, more could overpower. If there's no bourbon, try rye whiskey for a spicier kick!

Alex Green

Dry Vermouth: 1oz

It adds depth and herbal complexity without overwhelming sweetness. Too much and your cocktail's walking through an herb garden, too little and it's a bourbon solo act. A splash of Lillet Blanc could be a lovely alternative if you're out of vermouth.

Emma Rose

Fresh Lemon Juice: 0.5oz

Brings a bright, fresh zing and balances the sweetness. Less juice makes it cloying, more could mean sour faces all around. No lemon juice? Lime could work but expect a tartier twist!

Mary Mitkina

Grenadine: 0.5oz

It offers a sweet blush to your drink. Less can make it too tart, more is like kissing a sugar cube. Pomegranate syrup can step in if grenadine's on the lam.

Alex Green

Orange Bitters: 2 dashes

It's like a spice rack in a dash; aromatic, complex and it ties everything together. Forget it, and your cocktail might feel a bit lost. No orange bitters? Angostura could play the part, but it's like substituting oregano for thyme—similar, yet different.

Emma Rose

Maraschino Cherry: 1

A sweet little encore to a well-crafted performance. Skip it, and nobody's sad, but it adds a touch of class and sweetness at the end. No cherries? An orange twist won't sing the same tune, but it's a zesty understudy.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Roosevelt Drink

  1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice
  2. Add bourbon, dry vermouth, fresh lemon juice, grenadine, and orange bitters
  3. Shake well until chilled
  4. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass
  5. Garnish with a maraschino cherry

Pro Tips

  • Shake the cocktail well to ensure all ingredients are well mixed
  • Use a chilled glass to serve the cocktail for the best taste
  • Garnish with a maraschino cherry to enhance the presentation

Perfect Pairings


  • Charcuterie board: A selection of cured meats and cheeses pair nicely with the robust flavors of bourbon.
  • Smoked almonds: The smokiness complements the bourbon while the saltiness contrasts the sweetness.

Main Course:

  • Grilled steak: The bold flavors of the steak complement the strong profile of the cocktail.
  • BBQ ribs: Sweet barbecue sauce and the caramel notes from bourbon are a match made in heaven.


  • Lemon tart: Echoes the lemon juice in the cocktail for a harmonious pairing.
  • Chocolate fondue: A hint of bitterness from chocolate can balance the sweetness of grenadine.

Non-Alcoholic Drinks:

  • Sparkling water: To cleanse the palate between sips.
  • Iced tea: For a non-alcoholic option that still feels like a treat.

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What you could change in Roosevelt

  • Bourbon: Can be replaced with Rye Whiskey
  • Dry Vermouth: Can be replaced with Sweet Vermouth
  • Fresh Lemon Juice: Can be replaced with Lime Juice
  • Grenadine: Can be replaced with Simple Syrup
  • Orange Bitters: Can be replaced with Angostura Bitters

Explore all drinks starting with R here

And of course - twists🍹

Honey Roosevelt

  • Replace grenadine with honey syrup.
  • Add a dash of lavender bitters. The subtle floral notes of lavender and the natural sweetness of honey will give the cocktail a more earthy, soothing character.

Spicy Roosevelt

  • Infuse the bourbon with chili peppers for 24 hours.
  • Garnish with a spicy pickled pepper. This fiery twist will bring a heated excitement to each sip, perfect for those who like to walk on the wild side of taste!

Old-Fashioned Roosevelt

  • Use simple syrup instead of grenadine and add a spoon of muddled orange and a cherry at the bottom of the glass.
  • Stir the ingredients instead of shaking them, and serve in a rocks glass over ice. An homage to the classic Old-Fashioned, this twist combines the best of both worlds, offering a sippable cocktail with a familiar old-timey vibe.

In case you forgot basics how to make Roosevelt

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 Roosevelt

What type of glass is best suited for serving the Roosevelt cocktail?

A chilled cocktail glass is typically used for serving the Roosevelt cocktail. If you do not have a cocktail glass, a rocks glass can be a suitable alternative.

What are the key flavor components in a Roosevelt cocktail?

The Roosevelt cocktail is well-balanced with a hint of sweetness and a touch of sourness. The bourbon brings a rich, deep flavor, the vermouth adds slight bitterness, the fresh lemon juice and grenadine add sweetness and acidity, and the orange bitters and maraschino cherry finish it off with a citrusy, sweet garnish.

Is it essential to use fresh lemon juice for the Roosevelt cocktail?

Yes. Fresh lemon juice is crucial to a classic Roosevelt cocktail as it adds freshness and acidity to the drink, which helps balance the rich flavors of the bourbon and vermouth. Bottled lemon juice can be used in a pinch, but it may not provide the same level of freshness.

How can I modify a Roosevelt cocktail to make it less sweet?

To make a less sweet Roosevelt cocktail, you could reduce the amount of grenadine or replace it with a bitter component, like Campari. However, be mindful that adjustments can alter the traditional flavor profile.

Is there a particular brand of bourbon that works best in a Roosevelt cocktail?

While the choice of bourbon is subjective and depends on personal preference, a well-balanced and smooth bourbon that complements the other ingredients is typically used. Maker's Mark, Woodford Reserve, or Bulleit are all suitable choices.

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