Somewhere along the line, as barkeeps tend to do, someone decided to experiment with the Sling formula and may have figured if you can spice up a sling, what would happen if you sour it? Answer: it would be delicious.
By the middle of the 19th century, sours became all the rage in the nation’s spirituous centers. Foreshadowing the Vermouth Cocktail Archetype or, more likely, making it possible, a common addition to the sour was a float of red wine for what became known as the New York Sour. To the extent that punches, slings, and cocktails have become fairly well disguised as drinks we no longer recognize as punches, slings, and cocktails, nowadays we will recognize the sours of the latter half of the 19th century as the same essential sour we drink today. .
The Archetypal Mix
Spirit, Sweet, Sour, and Water
As noted in the Punch discussion, the sour was most often lemon or lime juices, but don’t ignore the possibilities offered by any of the others. If Cock-tail was described as a “bittered sling”, then why not call a sour a “soured sling”? Of course, following such a treacherous train of thought, a “soured cocktail” or a “bittered sour” is merely Punch.
Some common or classic drinks that fit the
Whisk(e)y, gin, vodka, amaretto sours, Tom Collins, Ramos Gin Fizz, Aviation, Bacardi Cocktail, Long Island Ice Tea, Jack Rose, Mojito, Sidecar, French 75, Hot Toddy, Daiquiri, Margarita, Cosmopolitan, Pisco Sour, and Caipirinha.
Next up: Vermouth Cocktail