It took some time before cocktails were served at grand country houses. You may recall that Mary once warned Sir Richard: “I could ask Carson to make one for you, but I can’t guarantee the result.” It wasn’t until Season 5 when Rose brought the cocktail party to Downton.
- Lady Mary Cocktail: Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery) is beloved for her icy composure, so be sure her drink is properly chilled. Remember when Mr. Pamuk got iced during a night with Lady Mary?1.5 oz Lillet Blanc
.75 oz fresh-squeezed lemon juice
4-5 basil leaves
brut champagne, chilledAdd the basil and lemon juice to your shaker and muddle. Add Lillet and ice and then shake and strain into a flute. Top with champagne.(via theKitchn)
- Lady Edith Cocktail – The blowup between second-fiddle sister Edith (Laura Carmichael) and domineering Mary (Michelle Dockery) was worthy of Downton Abbey‘s final season on Masterpiece.1 1/2 ounce ruby red grapefruit juice (fresh-squeezed!)
1/2 ounce sloe gin (see note)
Sweet rosé champagne, chilled, such as Ballatore Spumante RossoAdd the grapefruit juice and sloe gin to a flute. Top with champagne. Stir and serve.(via theKitchn)
- Lord Grantham – After his horrific burst ulcer in Season 6, Lord Grantham (Hugh Bonneville) can sit back and relax a bit more, now that his daughter Lady Mary is taking the reigns over the estate. Bonneville recalls his character’s tendency for other rash outbursts in this clip, above.2 ounces Beefeater 24
3/4 ounces Lillet Blanc
1/2 ounce lemon juice
2 1/2 ounces Earl Grey tea (chilled and sweetened)
1 mint sprig, for garnish
2 strawberries, for garnish
Orange wedge, for garnishAdd gin, Lillet Blanc, lemon juice, and tea to a large, ice-filled wineglass; stir. Garnish with mint, strawberries, and orange wedge.(via PopSugar)
- The Dowager Countess– Bon mots are essential ingredients for a cocktail party. Take inspiration from the Dowager (Maggie Smith), who lobbed a zinger into nearly every episode of the series (highlights, above). We raise a glass to her return.Serves 1
1 1/2 ounces of gin
1 1/2 ounces of sweet vermouth
3 dashes of Fernet Branca
1 1/2 ounces club soda, chilled
Orange twist for garnishIn a cocktail shaker filled with ice, combine the gin, sweet vermouth and Fernet Branca. Stir until chilled, then strain into a coupe glass. Top with club soda.Run the orange peel’s orange side along the glass and twist to express the oils. Drop into the glass or perch on the edge of the glass.(via theKitchn)
- Mr. Bates Bittersweet Cocktail: Cheers to Mr. Bates (Brendan Coyle), a man with a bitter past, for winning the heart of sweet Anna (Joanne Froggatt). The loving couple is now taking care of their toddler – and the Crawleys – in the film.1 ounce Amaro Nonino
1 ounce Pedro Ximenez Sherry
Orange peelIn a short glass filled with cracked ice, add the Amaro Nonino, the sherry and a couple of dashes of orange bitters. (Angostura bitters works well here too.) Stir.Twist the orange peel to express its oils into the glass then drop it in as a garnish.(via theKitchn)
If you don’t trust Carson to mix drinks, consider wines, spirits and liqueurs for your guests.
- Champagne or sparkling wines would be a great celebratory drink to toast each of the 16 categories.
- Madeira: Edwardians loved madeira, for any fortified wine (sherry, brandy) would be a fitting tribute to the Dowager Countess.
- Wine: a great choice.
- Scotch: a favourite of the Crawley men, single malt for an upstairs crowd.
- Pimm’s: a popular drink in the UK (derived from gin), but might more suitable for the summer. If you do live in the lower states it might be suitable as a thirst quencher. Check out my Pimm’s Punch recipe, my favourite.
The New Downton Abbey Cocktail Book
This is a must-have for Downton fans who love their libations, now available on Amazon.
Other Collectables for Downton Abbey Fans