Why A '90s Cocktail Revival Is Likely On The Horizon

When was the last time you enjoyed a bright pink Cosmopolitan? The vodka- and cranberry juice-based cocktail typically shaken with ice, strained, and served in a martini glass (via Liquor.com) hasn't really been too in fashion since the late 1990s and early 2000s, when it was popularized by the blockbuster HBO series "Sex and the City." A standard bar order of the show's cast members, the drink made its debut during the second season of the show, according to Liquor.com, and boosted the formerly relatively obscure cocktail to dizzying heights of popularity: For about a decade, "Bartenders couldn't work a shift without making dozens of them for thirsty patrons," the outlet writes.

When "Sex and the City" went off the air in 2004, the Cosmo's popularity began to fade. But today, the cocktail is again on the rise, according to Food & Wine — along with other key '90s drinks such as the buzzy espresso martini and the bright green Appletini.

The '90s are back, but with better ingredients

The ingredients that make up a Cosmopolitan aren't all that bad: Just citrus vodka, Cointreau, fresh lime juice, and cranberry juice cocktail (via Liquor.com). The pink drink may not have been taken seriously by bartenders in the past, but with even more cleaned-up ingredients, it's worth taking a second look at, according to Lynnette Marrero. The head of education for the mixology conference Bar Convent created a Cosmo Nouveau for Food & Wine, which swaps pomegranate juice for the cran cocktail. Plus, the outlet notes that whereas in the past, flavored vodkas were artificially flavored and sweetened, citrus vodkas today are infused with real fruit — another factor that ups the drink's elegance.

Food & Wine notes that the Cosmopolitan isn't the only '90s drink that's being upgraded these days. "Cocktails come in cycles," Marrero told the outlet. "Right now we're seeing '90s fashion and a nostalgia for rediscovering these drinks, but from bartenders with a better arsenal of ingredients." Other cocktails getting revamped include the Appletini, which craft cocktail pioneer Julie Reiner has updated using apple-infused gin and vodka, plus apple brandy and apple liqueur — a far cry from the original neon-green ingredients of sour apple schnapps imitation liqueur, Ketel One vodka, and sweet-and-sour mix (via Liquor.com).

"Maybe I can drink a good apple martini," Naren Young, creative director of Miami Beach craft cocktail spot Sweet Liberty, told The New York Times. "There's nothing wrong with it if it's done well."