10/15/2012 05:11:00 PM

The 10 Most Annoying Cocktail Trends

Let's give the retro a rest...
Can we all agree that no one wants vodka that tastes like a marshmallow? This week we launched the results of our first ever mixology survey, and the voters sounded off about the cocktail trends that annoy them the most. Wacky flavors of vodka were a common refrain, and we think that the commenters would go crazy if that marshmallow cocktail cracked the $15 mark. From weird glassware to way-expensive libations, click through the below slide show for a list of trends that make another round seem like a bad idea.

Be sure to leave your cocktail pet peeves in the comments and weigh in on social media with the hashtag #drinksweek.

28 comments :

  1. My rate card specifically states that I don't review candy flavored Vodka.

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  2. While I do agree with some of the things on this list lets all take a moment to think about the bars that are making these elaborate and sometimes more expensive cocktails. The places I'm referring to are some of the best "cocktail" bars in the world. We have dubbed them cocktail bars because we go there to drink fine cocktails from people who have often spent many years working, researching, and honing their craft to produce unique and delicious beverages.
    There are other parallels in the world. I buy my shoes from a discounted wholesaler because they get the job done and the style isn't really important to me. However some people spend hundreds of dollars on slippers because of fine fabric and leather assembled by a skilled craftsman. Do fashionistas complain because Ferragamo is too expensive?
    No one is forcing you to drink expensive cocktails. When I want a good drink I go down to the local and drink Jameson because I know what I'm getting and the bartender is fun. We have an agreement that I won't ask him for a Negroni. Maybe he knows how to make it. Maybe not. The exotic libations created by skilled bartenders are a treat for the people who care and want that extra bit of care in their beverages.
    You wouldn't expect Daniel Boulud to make you a three-piece for the price that KFC offers so why do you expect It from Dale Degroff?
    (Sorry Dale, no harm intended)

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  3. I happen to LOVE cocktail onions! Give me a Gibson over a martini anytime.

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  4. who can even taste "infused" anything? we're mixing it with alcohol people!!!

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  5. Interesting Survey while I love a good manhattan and a old fashioned at the end of they day a drink is a drink.

    Let's face it mixologist bars are a nice experience but they arent the ones producing millions at the end of the year its vodka & redbulls, and bottle service spots pouring Vokda & Cranberry.

    There is a reason why Mixologists dont want to be called Mixologists anymore, 1) They are pretentious 2) A Mixologist isnt even a real word and finally 3) A real Bartender is a bartender, not a mixologist ...



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  6. I've been drinking white\reg cosmos for a few years now, and I love how light they are and not too syrupy. So when I go to a place that uses Grand Marnier instead of triple sec I see red! I actually like Grand Marnier, just not in my cosmo and a couple places don't even give you a choice and have said they don't even stock triple sec anymore!

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  7. Another useless article full of incorrect information. You're really killing the brand here, kids.

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  8. Those old school coupes take about 3.5 ounces, which is just what a cocktail should be. Jumbo martini glasses are as cheesy as cosmos.

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  9. While I largely agree with the complaints about ridiculous serving vessels, I must second Ian's comment: coupes are not on that list. If your drink is more than 4 oz at the most, it's too big. It'll grow warm (and in some cases separate) long before you've finished it. 3 to 3.5 oz is perfect, and prohibition-era coupes are an elegant way to serve up a drink.

    Agree with everything else on this list. I love cocktail history, technique, and quality drinks ... but there's no reason it has to be a snobbish affair with a $22 product that uses 15 herb-infused ingredients, liquid nitrogen, and flavored vodka.

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  10. Anyone who pays $20 for a cocktail, deserves what they get.

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  11. Agree with the flavored vodkas. The rest of the things on the list make it clear this site is full of losers. Stay at home and drink vodka with some Ocean Spray if you don't like cocktail innovation and socializing.

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  12. If people didn't want bacon in their bloody marys, then why are those so popular? Obviously someone must like them, and the one my wife ordered with breakfast this morning was quite good. Maybe we need to quit letting "experts" tell us what to drink. If you don't want the bacon bloody mary, don't order it, but leave the rest of us alone. Seems to me this whole thing falls into the catagory of #10 about being snobbish about drinks. A little hypocritical, don't you think?

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    1. Totally agree -- surveyed a lot of haters for this article, it seems. I like a lot of these new cocktail trends - herbal ingredients, new flavors (not in vodka, though - agree with that one), bacon, whatever. I was straining to figure out what is left that would be acceptable after we eliminate everything on this list - gin and tonic? Or is that too retro? Screwdrivers and Vodka cranberry? Surely that can't be what all these people want...

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  13. By the way, metal straws do NOT help keep the liquid cold. In fact, they do exactly the opposite. They increase the rate of heat transfer between the cold drink and the warm air, warming your drink sooner.

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  14. Metal straws and flavoured vodka I agree with. Think the rest of them are a bit unnecessary. Yes I do think they deserve to be called mixologists. I think molecular mixology is a damn hard art to perfect, but when you do, it's outstanding. We have sommeliers for wine and if we are willing to go down these routes with our food then why not beverage? I love bacon flavoured beer, I love bacon in my bloody mary.

    Unfortunately, if you are paying top dollar for a cocktail, it bloody well be amazing. This is where pretentiousness comes in. While I'm not a fan of people who act like they know more about cocktails than anyone else, there is nothing more heinous than watching someone order a martini (shaken not stirred cos I'm James Bond) with bloody Gordon's. How much would you spend on your meal in a fine dining restaurant? Oh you don't go because they are too expensive? Well then you probably shouldn't be going to a cocktail bar then.

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    1. The point is not so much that people don't want to pay for quality, it's that if you're charging more than fifteen bucks for a Jack Rose or a Vieux Carré, you're overcharging. You can make *perfect* versions of those drinks at home for less than six bucks a glass, and bars get a discount on top of that because they buy in bulk. So even with markup, topping $15 is crazy. Never mind places that charge $17 and up for 4 ounces of chilled vodka with a couple of olives thrown into it.

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    2. Chris- Sure you can make it at home for less than six bucks. But at home do you have to pay for a liquor license, rent on the business property, wages for your employees, taxes, etc.? Much of the mark-up in a bar is to cover the cost of having a bar in the first place.
      $17 for a vodka martini in certain cities may be ridiculous, but I don't think a $15 Vieux Carre is out of this world, provided the quality of the booze is up to par. Granted, I only charge $12, but I'm not located in New York or San Francisco either.

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    3. After reading the comments, I'll take a Blatz.
      Thanks.

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  15. Disagree about the coupes. Those are usually the most "dangerous" cocktails, really--just as much liquor (and sometimes more than) as the larger glasses, but less mixer.

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  16. If you ask the average joe what they want in a cocktail, you're going to get the answers you got from your "survey." The cocktail trend is not for everyone, just like high end food is not for everyone. It's actually a pretty small audience that really digs the cutting edge cocktail scene. While I agree with some of the points, it seems silly to paint this as truth. My sister's beer-drinking, deer hunting husband is one of the best human beings I know, but he doesn't even know what a Manhattan is, so don't ask him about it.

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  17. Who says the cocktail onion "went out"? And for what "reason" are you talking about, pray?

    Agree with bad penny...as long as it's GIN and not vodka anything...

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  18. This list is idiotic, often hypocritical from one slide to the next, and obviously the work of a philistine — though obviously marshmallow vodka is gross.

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  19. The two items on your list I disagree most strongly with: too much retro and the complaint about twee drinks. Almost all classic cocktail recipes are sized for coupes because if they're larger than that, the vessel better in insulated!

    And as far as too much retro goes....Retro aesthetic in marketing or presentation is one thing, but the Zagat complaint seemed to come close to saying that retro drinks themselves were problematic. Nearly every lounge includes both retro and new types of cocktails. They aren't mutually exclusive categories, and it's an examination of retro--classic--cocktails that fueled the whole and wholly welcome mixology craze in the first place.

    I am surprised that the overabundance of bitters options wasn't on the list...and I'm glad it wasn't. There are more types of bitters on the market than the market can handle. The unpopular ones (or at least those not as well funded, distributed, or marketed) will fail, and bitters themselves, used properly, can add complexity and interesting flavor. So, here's a thanks for leaving bitters off the list.

    I agree most strongly with the annoyance about paying more than $15 for a cocktail. Oh, and anyone willing to drink flavored vodka, with the possible exception of pear vodka, should have to chew on a stick of twee sandpaper while wearing metal straws in their nose.

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  20. (One thing I'll concede about pricing. The markup on liquor is extraordinary thus making a cocktail price of more than $15 seem offensive. BUT....factor in the cost of COMMERCIAL RENT and, if a lounge's owner dares offer this in the first place, health insurance for staff, and it must be admitted that one has to sell a helluva lot of $15 cocktails to make a profit. The impact of rent on the NYC dining and lounge scenes over the last 20 years has been PROFOUND and mixed.)

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  21. 11th annoying cocktail trend: people who write articles about top 10 annoying cocktail trends!

    NOBODY CARES!

    GET A LIFE!

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  22. Re: flavored vodka...if you've ever been to the Russian Vodka Room in Manhattan, or know any Russians, you may think differently. Cranberry-infused vodka is amazing...just sayin

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  23. i'm not sure why anyone would be annoyed by a cocktail trend, other than the people who actually have to make the cocktails -- that's likely who the survey pool consisted of. why would i care or be annoyed by what someone else wants to drink?

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