Cocktail Friday (“Make it a Double” Edition): The Aviation & The Blue Moon

I missed Cocktail Friday last week,  what with being sick and WFC, but today you get to reap the benefits of last week’s slacking–today I’ll cover two of my favorite gin drinks: The Aviation and the Blue Moon.

These two cocktails share a common history–the Blue Moon seems to have been the original Aviation, thanks to the sky-bluish color lent by the Creme Yvette. Eventually, the two drinks went their own way and the Aviation became firmly established as described below.

Popular during the dawn of aviation, I like to think of these cocktails as the same sky: either you fly during the day or at night.

The Blue Moon is slightly more obscure, due to the Creme Yvette/creme de violette all but disappearing from the American market for awhile. Made from the petals of violets–the flavor of this liqueur is floral, but subtle and sweet, never cloying.  We only discovered  creme de violette after some friends of ours graciously shared some (delivered in a mason jar, naturally). We managed to make it last almost a year, but alas now we are out. Fortunately creme de violette is easier to find these days.

I suggest making both drinks and comparing them to find out which one is your favorite. Share. Or don’t, and soar the skies in your own solo adventure. Just fly responsibly, of course.

The Aviation

The Aviation

  • 2 1/2 oz. gin (I suggest Plymouth)
  • 3/4 oz. fresh lemon juice
  • 2-3 dashes maraschino liqueur

Shake with ice and strain into cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.(You can use more maraschino and less lemon juice if you find the above recipe too tart for your tastes.)

The Blue Moon

The Blue Moon

  • 2 oz. gin
  • 1/2 oz. creme de violette
  • 1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice.

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Both of the above recipes are adapted from Ted Haigh’s Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails.