A few summers ago, a friend hosted a “big” birthday party for me. It was awesome!
(If someone asks if they can host something in honor of your birthday, please say yes! You’ll be glad you did. 🥳)
There were two things i'll never forget about that night:
1. How wonderful it was to spend time with friends from different parts of my life (work, kids, gym...)
2. What a huge hit the pineapple martinis were!
If you’re looking for a fun and easy way to make a big impact at your next birthday party, I’ve got two words for you:
Signature cocktail (or mocktail, if you’d prefer something non-alcoholic.)
Keep reading or jump directly to a section by clicking on the link:
- Why Your Party Needs a Birthday Cocktail
- How to Make a Birthday Cocktail Memorable
- Birthday Cocktails to Try (recipes/videos included for Pineapple Martinis, Screwball Sundaes, Birthtinis and Lemon Drops with Birthday Candles
Why You Need a Birthday Cocktail at Your Next Party
Here are 8 reasons to serve a signature cocktail at your next birthday gathering, including:
- A fun and festive drink is perfect for a celebration.
- The signature drink can be in honor of the birthday person's favorite liquor or flavor.
- A signature cocktail sets the tone for the party—the host put some thought into this!---and acts as a unifying theme.
- The drink can serve as an icebreaker of sorts. At the party I mentioned above, guests were offered a cocktail when they arrived. It got the conversation going---“What’s in this drink that makes it so yummy?’ and before you knew it, friends from different parts of my life were chatting away.
- Serve the drink in an interesting way and it can also add to your party decor. My friend served the martinis from a beautiful crystal punch bowl that had pineapple chunks floating in it. She had the punch bowl on the kitchen island near a beautiful centerpiece.
- One very interesting drink is far more memorable than saying, “We have beer, wine, bourbon….”
- It takes much less time to make a pitcher of cocktails than it does to spend hours and hours decorating a birthday cake
- Your guests can try a cocktail that may be new to them. (This is how I came to learn that a Moscow mule is delicious.)
Not sure which festive cocktail to make? We can help!
These Bourbon Milkshakes were silly delicious! (Watch video.)
How to Make a Birthday Cocktail Memorable
You've heard the saying, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."
The same can be said of what makes something memorable.
Signature drinks can be memorable for a variety of reasons, including:
- The drink is unfamiliar to most of your guests
- The flavors are an unusual combination
- An ingredient in the drink is hard to come by or is handmade
- The presentation is interesting
- The individual glass has some atypical garnishment
Festive Birthtinis. Perhaps for a 50th birthday party? (Watch here.)
Birthday Cocktails: Recipes to Try
While I'm not much of a bartender, I'm a sucker for cute.
I've made lemon drops and served them with lit birthday candles standing upright. (Watch video...and don't miss the last few seconds where I end up wearing the cocktail!) Recipe below.
I've decorated the rim of a martini glass with cake frosting and sprinkles. (Watch here.) Recipe below.
I've made bourbon milkshakes in ice cream cones that were so delicious I found myself quite tipsy during the middle of the day. (Watch here.) Recipe below.
I've also used blue chai tea powder to create a deep purplish blue liquid and then added it to other ingredients, including vodka. While I gave myself an A for effort, the end result was not ready for prime time. (Instead, check out this post and learn the right way to do it.)
As long as you make the signature cocktail something that the birthday person will enjoy, you're sure to please.
Still not sure what to make? Here's the recipe for pineapple martinis from my friend, followed by recipes for the other drinks mentioned.
Mrs. Martin’s Pineapple Martinis: Birthday Cocktail
- 2 liters of Tito’s or your favorite vodka
- 2 whole pineapples (not canned)
- Sprite or 7Up
*** For best flavor, plan to start making martinis ~2 weeks before your event. ***
- Cut the pineapple into chunks and place in a very large container with a tight seal.
- Pour vodka over pineapple chunks and seal the container tightly.
- Let the container sit for 2 weeks so that pineapple infuses the vodka.
- Fill a shaker with ice.
- Add the pineapple-infused vodka and shake.
- Pour into a chilled martini glass and add a splash or two of Sprite or 7-Up.
- For an extra touch, create a sugared rim on the glass. Just dip the glass into pineapple juice and then into sugar. Add a chunk of pineapple for added garnish…and pretty pictures!
- These drinks are strong! Add more or less Sprite/7-Up/seltzer depending on your guests and the time of day.
Screwball Ice Cream Sundaes Yummy Birthday Cocktail
- Vanilla ice cream
- Screwball Peanut Butter Bourbon
- Cake ice cream cones (you want the ones with a flat bottom)
- Chocolate ganache or frosting
- Whipped Cream
- Maraschino Cherries
1. Start by dipping the empty cones into warmed chocolate ganache or chocolate frosting. Immediately put sprinkles on so they will stick.
2. Place a scoop of vanilla ice cream into each cone and top with a shot of Screwball.
3. Add some whipped cream and a cherry to each.
Serve the sundaes with a small spoon. Some guests may want to enjoy as is, but the spoons definitely help you to enjoy all the yummy flavors.
The whipped cream melts FAST. Serve as soon as possible!
Save this recipe for an adults only party to make sure the kiddos don't think it's for them! 😀
Birthtinis: Birthday Cocktail
(aka Cosmos in Festive Glasses!)
Ingredients for 4 cocktails:
- 1 cup of your favorite Vodka
- 1/4 cup Triple Sec
- 1/2 cup Cranberry Cocktail (sweeter than plain cranberry juice)
- 2 Tablespoons of freshly squeezed Lime juice
- 1/2 cup of White Frosting (okay to use store-bought)
1. Start by prepping your glasses. Melt the white frosting in the microwave and then swirl the top of each glass into it. Add sprinkles.
2. Fill a large cocktail shaker with ice and then add vodka, triple sec, cranberry cocktail and fresh lime. Shake ingredients to chill.
3. Strain ingredients into your festive glasses. Add a splash of seltzer to the top and stir gently.
The colder the better! 🥳
Wondering why the seltzer? Cosmos are very strong and adding a bit of seltzer lets your guests ease into the party.
Birthday Lemon Drop Cocktail
What is the best drink to drink on your birthday?
Your birthday drink should be your favorite drink. 🥳