Ah, a Dubonnet cocktail – it’s a drink that seems inherently chic and sophisticated, but maybe that’s because it happens to be Queen Elizabeth’s favorite cocktail. You don’t have to be a member of the royal family to get sucked in like that, though; all you need is this recipe from the developer Christina Musgrave for a classic Dubonnet cocktail. “I love this cocktail because it’s so simple yet so good,” Musgrave enthuses. “There are only three ingredients and it’s so easy to make.”
Aside from Dubonnet, the only other two ingredients are gin and an orange peel, so it’s kind of like a gin martini. Instead of vermouth, of course, the Dubonnet, a fortified wine that “tastes tangy and fruity,” according to Musgrave, comes into play. “The gin makes the cocktail even more boozy and the orange adds a touch of citrus,” she adds. It’s pretty classy for such a boozy cocktail, but that’s because the Dubonnet offers some complex flavors. The end result is a simple yet divine cocktail, one that you’ll want to drink slowly to soak up all the spicy notes.
Grab the right ingredients to make a Dubonnet cocktail
We’ve already covered that you only need three ingredients to make a classic Dubonnet — the Dubonnet itself, of course, some gin, and an orange zest for garnish. Of course, a cocktail with so few ingredients is quite dependent on each of them, so there isn’t much room for substitutions with this one.
Mix the Dubonnet and gin with some ice
Fill a cocktail mixing glass with ice, then pour in both the gin and Dubonnet. Stir for 15 seconds so that the two liqueurs mix completely and get a nice chill. A good way to tell if the drink has cooled enough is to hold the glass while stirring. If the glass gets so cold that it becomes uncomfortable to touch it any longer, you’re good.
Pour and garnish your Dubonnet cocktail
Strain the cocktail into a rock or martini glass and top with a fresh orange zest. “The longer the orange peel is in the drink, the more citrus flavor will get into the drink,” notes Musgrave. So if you’re a fan of citrus fruits, you might want to wait a few minutes before taking a sip.
Enjoy your Dubonnet cocktail
Because this cocktail is sufficiently boozy, easy to make, and quite stylish, it’s a great option to enjoy alone or with guests. “This is a great cocktail for dinner or an easy cocktail to take to a dinner party,” says Musgrave. When you come to a party with ingredients from Dubonnet, you can safely say that your friends want you to play bartender all night.