Drinks

Aviation Cocktail 1912

Aviation 1912.

There are several different recipes, all called “Aviation Cocktail”. However, the generally known one with Crème de Violette from 1916 is the youngest. The others fell into oblivion, but the one from 1912 is a real gem.

45 ml Dubonnet
45 ml Lustau Jarana fino sherry

Preparation: Stirred.

We have already reported in detail on the history of the Aviation Cocktail and the various historical recipes in our post on the Aviation Cocktail. Only the most recent recipe is generally known today, the others fell into oblivion. But the oldest, a mixture of Dubonnet and dry sherry, deserves to be made better known again.

Depending on the ingredients used, the combination of Dubonnet and sherry can be found under different names. Dubonnet and sherry are always used, optionally orange bitters or pecon bitters are added, also an orange zest or slice can be shaken along. The drink appears in these variations

  • 1908 as Dubonnet Cocktail (eleven mentions)
  • 1912 as Aviation Cocktail (ten mentions)
  • 1914 as Zaza Cocktail (eleven mentions)
  • 1929 as Stoneleigh (one mention),
  • 1930 as Katinka (one mention)
  • 1934 as Bambooler Cocktail (one mention)
  • 1934 as Jack and Charles Special Cocktail (one mention)
  • 1934 as Merry Widow (two mentions)
  • 1934 as Miami Cocktail (one mention)
  • 1938 as Alfonso Cocktail (four mentions)
  • 1938 as Aviator (one mention)
  • 1949 as Alphonso XIII (four mentions)

Of all these variants, we opted for the mixture of Dubonnet and dry sherry, without any other additions. It was the best for us. This is also the variant that was first called an Aviation Cocktail in 1912.

The question now is what to call this drink. A Dubonnet cocktail and also a Zaza cocktail are usually understood to be cocktails made from gin and Dubonnet, as we will show in a separate article. Consequently, both terms should not be used for this drink. The Dubonnet Cocktail is also very versatile, so that it is sometimes numbered consecutively in the books. The version with sherry and Dubonnet, for example, is “Dubonnet Cocktail No. 4” by William Boothby in 1930. The situation is similar for the Zaza Cocktail. The version we are interested in is William Boothby’s “Zaza Cocktail No. 3”.

The third possible name from before Prohibition is Aviation Cocktail. This designation is found in the oldest publication that combines Dubonnet and sherry without further additions, namely William Boothby’s “The World’s Drinks and How to Mix Them” in 1912. Today, an aviation cocktail is understood to be the 1916 version, consisting of gin, lemon juice, maraschino and crème de violette. But since the name “Aviation Cocktail” was first used for the recipe we are talking about in this article, and therefore has the older rights, we have decided to use “Aviation Cocktail 1912”. At the time, aviation was something new, which explains the name. We will go into this in more detail in our post about the Aviation Cocktail.

The Washington Herald, 22 September 1911, page 6.
The Washington Herald, 22 September 1911, page 6. [1]

We are unable to say whether the Aviation Cocktail published in 1912 is the one mentioned in the Washington Herald a year earlier. There it is said: „Aviation Cocktail. From the Chicago Record-Herald. Somebody has invented an „aviation cocktail,“ but the aviation 5-cnt cigar is slow in appearing.“.[1] Unfortunately, we are not told what this Aviation Cocktail consists of.

All other names are only mentioned once, are much younger and are partly used for other drinks. Merry Widow is a name under which numerous different drinks have been published, and the Alfonso is usually made with champagne.

Sources
  1. http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045433/1911-09-22/ed-1/seq-6/#date1=1789&sort=date&date2=1924&words=Aviation+aviation+cocktail+Cocktail&searchType=basic&sequence=0&index=1&state=&rows=20&proxtext=aviation+cocktail&y=0&x=0&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=1: The Washington Herald , 22. September 1911, page 6.
Aviation 1912.
Aviation 1912.

Historical recipes

1908 William Boothby: The World’s Drinks. Seite 24. Dubonnet Cocktail.

Into a mixing-glass place some cracked ice, two dashes of Orange bitters,
one-third jiggerful of dry sherry and two-thirds jiggerful of French Dubonnet;
stir thoroughly, strain into a chilled cocktail-glass, squeeze a piece of lemon
peel over the top and serve with ice water on the side.

1909 Carl A. Seutter: Der Mixologist. Seite 42. Dubonnet-Cocktail.

3—4 Stückchen Kristalleis,
3 Dashes Orange-Bitters,
1/3 Cocktailglas Sherry,
2/3 „ Dubonnet.
Im übrigen verfahre man wie beim vorhergehenden Rezept. Serviere
ohne Kirsche und Olive.

[Anmerkung: Beim vorhergehenden Rezept steht:
Mische tüchtig mit einem Barlöffel, seihe es in ein Cocktailglas, in
welches eine Kirsche gelegt wurde, drücke das Öl aus einem Stückchen
Zitronenschale darüber und serviere.]

1912 William Boothby: The World’s Drinks and How to Mix Them. Seite 24. Dubonnet Cocktail.

Into a mixing-glass place some cracked ice, two dashes of Orange bitters,
one-third jiggerful of dry sherry and two-thirds jiggerful of French Dubonnet;
stir thoroughly, strain into a chilled cocktail-glass, squeeze a piece of lemon
peel over the top and serve with ice water on the side.

1912 William Boothby: The World’s Drinks and How to Mix Them. Anhang. Aviation Cocktail.

Equal parts of French Dubonnet wine and dry sherry, chilled thoroughly
is called an Aviation. Serve in cold stem glasses. A flavor of orange peel
may be squeezed over this beverage if desired.

1913 Hans Schönfeld & John Leybold: Lexikon der Getränke. Seite 58. Dubonnet-Cocktail.

Mischglas mit 3—4 Stck. Eis, 3 Spritzer
Orange-Bitter, 1/4 Cocktailglas Sherry, 2/3 Cocktailglas
Dubonnet, rühren, in Cocktailglas seihen, Citronen-
schale.

1914 Anonymus: The Art of Mixing Them. Seite 24. Dubonnet Cocktail.

Fill mixing glass with cracked ice; one half
Dubonnet; one half sherry; slice of orange. Shake
well and frappe.

1914 Ernest P. Rawling: Rawling’s Book of Mixed Drinks. Seite 41. Zaza Cocktail.

Over the ice in the mixer pour
one-half measure Dubonnet
one-half measure dry sherry;
stir well, strain and serve with a hazel
nut.

1922 Robert Vermeire: Cocktails. Dubonnet Cocktail.

Dubonnet is one of the best-known appetisers in the world. It is not only used for cocktails but also as a cooler and highball.

The Dubonnet Cocktail, formerly called “Zaza Cocktail,” includes:
1/4 gill of Gin.
1/4 gill of Dubonnet.
Stir up in ice, strain into a cocktail-glass, and squeeze orange-peel on top.

When desired dry, use 2/6 gill of Gin and 1/6 gill of Dubonnet instead of equal parts.

In San Francisco the Dubonnet Cocktail is made differently. Its ingredients are:
3 dashes of Orange Bitters.
2/6 gill of Dubonnet.
1/6 gill of Dry Pale Sherry.
Stir up well, strain into a cocktail-glass, with a cherry and lemon-peel squeezed on top.

1924 Carlo Beltramo: Carlo’s cocktails et boissons américaines. Seite 29. Zaza cocktail.

Se prépare dans le tumbler à moitié rempli
de glace: Quelques gouttes de bitter orange,
2/3 de Dubonnet, 1/3 de sherry sec (solera)
Pale. — Bien remuer et servir dans le verre à
cocktail.

1925 Carl A. Seutter: Der Mixologist. Seite 42. Dubonnet-Cocktail.

3-4 Stückchen Kristalleis,
3 Dashes Orange-Bitters,
1/3 Cocktailglas Sherry,
2/3 „ Dubonnet.
Im übrigen verfahre man wie beim vorhergehenden Rezept. Serviere
ohne Kirsche und Olive.

[Anmerkung: Beim vorherigen Rezept steht:
Mische tüchtig mit einem Barlöffel, seihe es in ein Cocktailglas, in
welches eine Kirsche gelegt wurde, drücke den Saft aus einem Stückchen
Zitronenschale darüber und serviere.]

1929 Anonymus: Life and Letters of Henry William Thomas. Seite 43. Stoneleigh.

Two parts Dubonnet and one part Sherry with orange peel
in glass.

1930 F. Koki: Cocktails. Dubonnet-Cocktail.

Gebrauche ein Barglas mit Eis.
3 Dashes Orange-Bitters,
1/3 Cocktailglas Sherry,
2/3 ” Dubonnet.
Mische gut mit einem Barlöffel, seihe es in ein Cocktailglas,
drücke den Saft aus einem Stückchen Zitronenschale darüber
und serviere.

1930 Jere Sullivan: The Drinks of Yesteryear. Seite 22. Katinka.

From London 1/3 Sherry Wine
with the Show. 2/3 Dubonnet Wine
Shake and strain into cocktail glass.

1930 William T. Boothby: „Cocktail Bill“ Boothby’s World Drinks. Seite 14. Aviation.

Dubonnet . . . . . 1/2 jigger Sherry . . . . . . 1/2 jigger
Shake well with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass, twist orange peel over
and serve.

1930 William T. Boothby: „Cocktail Bill“ Boothby’s World Drinks. Seite 37. Dubonnet, No. 4.

Dubonnet . . . . . . 2/3 jigger Sherry . . . . . . . . . 1/3 jigger
. Orange Bitters . . . . . . 2 dashes
Stir well with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass, twist lemon peel over
and serve with ice water chaser.

1930 William T. Boothby: „Cocktail Bill“ Boothby’s World Drinks. Seite 89. Zaza, No. 3.

Dubonnet . . . . . . 1/2 jigger Sherry . . . . . . . . 1/2 jigger
Stir well with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass, add French hazel
nut and serve.

1933 Anonymus: O’Dell’s Book of Cocktails and Fancy Drinks. Seite 132. Zaza Cocktail.

1/2 Dubonnet, 1/2 Sherry.

1933 Fred W. Swan: When Good Fellows Get Together. Seite 17. Bambooler Cocktail.

1/2 wineglass of Sherry.
1/2 wineglass Dubonnet.
1 dash of Pecon Bitters.
Fill glass with ice. Stir with mixing spoon.
Strain into cocktail glass. Twist a little piece
of lemon peel on top, and serve.

1933 George A. Lurie: Here’s How. Seite 5. Aviation.

Dubonnet . . . . . . 1 pony Sherry . . . . . . . . . 1 pony
Shake well with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass, twist
orange peel over and serve.

1933 George A. Lurie: Here’s How. Seite 88. Zaza, No. 3.

Dubonnet . . . . . . . 1 pony Sherry . . . . . . . . 1 pony
Stir well with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass, add
French hazel nut and serve.

1934 Anonymus: 100 Famous Cocktails. Seite 29. Merry Widow.

One-half French Vermuth
One-half Dubonnet
Frappe
Green Cherry

1934 Anonymus: Jayne’s Bartender’s Guide. Seite 94. Jack And Charlie’s Special Cocktail.

(Bill Darey)
One-third Sherry.
Two-thirds Dubonnet.
Frappe with orange peel, strain and serve in cocktail glass.

1934 Anonymus: What goes with what. Seite 6. Dubonnet Cocktail.

Fill mixing glass with cracked ice, one-half Dubonnet, one-half
Sherry, and slice of Orange.
Shake well and Frappe.

1934 Bernard: 100 Cocktails. Seite 49. Miami Cocktail.

1/4 gill of Pale Sherry.
1/4 gill of Dubonnet.
1 teaspoonful of Orange Bitters,
1 dash of Orange Peel Juice.
1 Cherry.
1/2 tumblerful of broken Ice.
Half fill a tumbler with broken ice and add the
Pale Sherry. Then put in the Orange Bitters
and the Dubonnet. Stir up and pass through a
strainer into a cocktail glass. Serve with a
cherry and a dash of orange peel juice on top.
A very refreshing cocktail.

1934 William T. Boothby: „Cocktail Bill“ Boothby’s World Drinks. Seite 18. Aviation.

Dubonnet . . . . . . 1/2 jigger Sherry . . . . . . 1/2 jigger
Shake well with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass, twist orange peel over
and serve.

1934 William T. Boothby: „Cocktail Bill“ Boothby’s World Drinks. Seite 63. Dubonnet, No. 4.

Dubonnet . . . . . . 2/3 jigger Sherry . . . . . . . . 1/3 jigger
. Orange Bitters . . . 2 dashes
Stir well with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass, twist lemon peel over
and serve with ice water chaser.

1934 William T. Boothby: „Cocktail Bill“ Boothby’s World Drinks. Seite 182. Zaza, No. 3.

Dubonnet . . . . . . . . . 1/2 jigger Sherry . . . . . . . . . . . . 1/2 jigger
Stir well with ice, strain into chUled cocktail glass, add French hazel
nut and serve.

1934 William T. Boothby: „Cocktail Bill“ Boothby’s World Drinks. Seite 182. Zaza, No. 3.

Dubonnet . . . . . . . . . 1/2 jigger Sherry . . . . . . . . . . . . 1/2 jigger
Stir well with ice, strain into chUled cocktail glass, add French hazel
nut and serve.

1937 John R. Iverson: Liquid Gems. Seite 26. Aviation Cocktail.

Bar glass — ice
1 oz. Sherry Wine
3/4 oz. Dubonett Wine
Twist of lemon peel
Stir, strain and serve in cocktail
glass.
No decoration.

Observations
This is an old-timer, and if for no other reason
merits a place in the book. Sherry wine is often
(and properly) drunk alone as an appetizer be
fore dinner. Sherry, the dryest of all sweet wines,
has a peculiar ability to sharpen the appetite.
With Dubonett, a French sweet wine, it creates
a mixture of rare mellowness, almost like over
ripe fruit. The best Sherry is produced at Jerez
de la Frontera, Spain.

1938 Bud Caroll: Popular Drinks of Today. Seite 8. Aviation.

Dubonnet . . . . . . . . .1/2 jigger Sherry . . . . . . . . 1/2 jigger
Stir well with ice, strain into chilled cocktail glass,
twist orange peel over and serve.

1938 Hyman Gale & Gerald F. Marco: The How and When. Seite 92. Aviator Cocktail.

1 pony Dubonnet
1 pony Sherry
Shake
Strain into Cocktail Glass
Twist Lemon Peel over top

1938 Hyman Gale & Gerald F. Marco: The How and When. Seite 148. Zaza Cocktail – No. 2.

1 pony Dubonnet
1 pony Sherry
Shake well
Strain into Cocktail Glass

1938 Jean Lupoiu: Cocktails. Seite 23. Alfonso Cocktail.

Dans le verre à mélange:
1/2 de Dubonnet, 1/2 Sherry Osborne.
Mélanger et servir.

1938 Robert Vermeire: L’art du cocktail. Seite 27. Dubonnet.

Verre à mélange:
Doux 2/3 Dubonnet et 1/3 gin.
Demi-sec 1/2 Dubonnet et 1/2 gin.
Sec 1/3 Dubonnet et 2/3 gin.
Remuer à la cuiller. Passer dans le verre
et presser pelure d’orange dessus.

A San Francisco ce cocktail se prépare:
3 traits d’orange bitter.
1/3 sherry pale dry.
2/3 Dubonnet.

«Dubonnet spécial» au shaker:
1 trait d’orange bitter.
1 trait d’angostura bitter.
1/3 dry pale sherry warri.
1/3 vermouth Chappaz.
1/3 Dubonnet.
Frapper. Passer dans le verre dans lequel
on a pressé d’avance une pelure d’orange et
une pelure de citron. Ce cocktail est connu
en Belgique sous le nom de «ROBERT’S
SPECIAL». Je l’ai créé à la suite du vote de la
loi Vandervelde en 1919 qui défend la vente
dans les lieux publics de tous les spiritueux
titrant plus de 18°.

1947 A. Vermeys: Cocktails. Seite 14. Alfonso Cocktail.

1/2 Dubonnet; 1/2 Sherry Sandeman.

1948 David A. Embury: The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks. Seite 125. Aviation.

Some recipe books
list, under the name of “Aviation,” an entirely differ-
ent drink consisting of equal parts of Dubonnet and
sherry.

1948 Jean Lupoiu: Cocktails. Seite 15. Alfonso Cocktail.

Dans le shaker:
1/2 de Dubonnet, 1/2 Sherry Osborne.
Mélanger et servir.

1948 Trader Vic: Bartender’s Guide. Seite 249. Aviation Cocktail.

3/4 oz. Dubonnet 3/4 oz. sherry
Shake with cracked ice; strain into chilled cocktail glass.
Twist orange peel over drink.

1948 Trader Vic: Bartender’s Guide. Seite 258. Zaza Cocktail 3.

3/4 oz. sherry 3/4 oz. Dubonnet
Stir with cracked ice; strain into chilled cocktail glass.

1949 Harry Schraemli: Das grosse Lehrbuch der Bar. Seite 292. Alfonso XIII-Cocktail.

1/2 Sherry, 1/2 Dubonnet. Gut rühren.

1950 Ted Shane: Authentic and Hilarious Bar Guide. Seite 120. Aviation.

1 part Dubonnet
1 part Sherry
Shake with cracked ice and
strain. Twist of orange peel.

1951 Ted Saucier: Ted Saucier’s Bottoms Up. Seite 25. Alfonso XIII.

Courtesy, Hotel Ritz, Paris
1/2 Dubonnet
1/2 dry sherry
Ice
Stir. Strain into cocktail
glass.

1952 Anonymus: Cocktails. Seite 64. Alfonse XIII.

Dans un verre à mélange:
1/2 de Dubonnet,
1/2 de dry Sherry,
Remuer vivement et servir.

1953 Marcel et Roger Louc: Cocktails et Grand Crus. Seite 112. Dubonnet Sherry.

Passer rapidement au verre
à mélange :
1/2 Dubonnet
1/2 Xérès.

1955 Jean Lupoiu: Cocktails. Seite 19. Alfonso Cocktail.

Dans le shaker:
1/2 de Dubonnet, 1/2 Sherry Chaplin.
Mélanger et servir.

1965 Robert London & Anne London: Cocktails and Snacks. Seite 65. Merry Widow Cocktail #1.

1 1/2 ounces Dubonnet or Byrrh 1 1/2 ounces dry vermouth or dry
. gin
Stir well with cracked ice. Strain into cocktail glass. Serve with twist
of lemon peel.

1965 Robert London & Anne London: Cocktails and Snacks. Seite 67. Zaza Cocktail #1.

1 ounce sherry 1 ounce Dubonnet
Stir with cracked ice. Strain into cocktail glass.

1966 Harry Schraemli: Le roi du bar. Seite 20. Alfonso XIII Cocktail.

Mixingglass. 1/2 sherry, 1/2 Dubonnet.

1972 Trader Vic: Trader Vic’s Bartender’s Guide. Seite 219. Aviation Cocktail.

3/4 ounce Dubonnet
3/4 ounce sweet sherry
Shake with ice cubes. Strain into chilled cocktail glass. Add
a twist of orange peel.

explicit capitulum
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About

Hi, I'm Armin and in my spare time I want to promote bar culture as a blogger, freelance journalist and Bildungstrinker (you want to know what the latter is? Then check out "About us"). My focus is on researching the history of mixed drinks. If I have ever left out a source you know of, and you think it should be considered, I look forward to hearing about it from you to learn something new. English is not my first language, but I hope that the translated texts are easy to understand. If there is any incomprehensibility, please let me know so that I can improve it.

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