Google Analytics Page Head Code

6 Craft Cordials for Your Cocktails

These craft cordials dazzle in drinks but are spectacular sipped solo, too.

Amy Zavatto, Published 02/10/21

Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here.

Ask for a definition of the word “cordial,” and you’re bound to get a bunch of different (and frankly confusing) answers or possibly even more questions in reply. Is it a spirit or liqueur? Does it even contain alcohol at all? Can the category encompass any possible answer to these questions, as long as the liquid in question contains sugar?

The answer to the latter question is essentially yes. On the website of the TTB (the government bureau that designates what’s permitted and what’s not in the realm of booze), the official definition doesn’t do much to clear things up, other than specify that a cordial must contain 2.5% sugar by weight. In the section that delineates and explains spirits classifications, where there are no fewer than 41 drilled-down different definitions of whiskey, the focus on cordials gets as murky as a louched glass of pastis. There are 21 different types listed, but the focus is on what they’re made of (gin cordial, brandy cordial, sloe gin) and the maximum ABV (typically 60 proof, or 30%, although once talk of anise-flavored spirits begins, it appears entirely up in the air). The legal definition uses the words “cordial” and “liqueur” interchangeably, calling the category a “flavored spirits product” that makes use of fruits, flowers, plants, juices or extracts of any of the latter.  

But there’s something particular and important implied in the category’s name. The word “cordial” all but instructs you to serve it as something special to be sipped slowly or used thoughtfully in a cocktail made and presented with care. “To be cordial is to be courteous and pleasant,” says Nicola Nice, the creator and owner of gin cordial Pomp & Whimsy. “And they make you think a little of etiquette, don’t they?”

These half-dozen bottles fill that role beautifully via freshly picked fruit, a bevy of botanicals or simply a carefully considered pivot of spirit base.

Mountain State Spirits Hazelnut Honey Bourbon Ratafia Cordial

The flavor of freshly cracked hazelnuts and aromas akin to a savory-sweet hazelnut tart make this ratafia a great addition to your bar cart. This West Virginia producer launched its duo of cordials in 2019, both of which use a two-year-old single-barrel high-rye bourbon base, currently via MGP. The resulting infusions are all whole-ingredient and West Virginia-sourced, and the 32.5% ABV cordials are beautifully light and easy to sip.

Read the full article here

Mountain State Spirits.. Dummy Text..

Buy Now