This is the cocktail I most associate with internet drinks, mainly because cocktail bloggers and devotees seem to have revived it in the past few years. While I like an Aviation, it tends towards being a little too sweet or tart to be one of my favorites. Still, the drink is intriguing, so I find myself returning to it. I’ve heard that Maraska instead of Luxardo might alter it more to my liking, but for now I’ve only had Luxardo maraschino liqueur.

Which brings us to maraschino liqueur. If you haven’t before, it’s worth trying but it really doesn’t taste anything like those bright red “cherries” in a jar. There is some cherry flavor, but it’s subtle, and the liqueur is a clear syrup. It’s powerful stuff, which is why I tend to recommend it in moderation.


2 oz gin
1/2 oz maraschino liqueur
1/4 oz lemon juice

Shake over ice, garnish with a cherry.

Now, a couple of notes:

  1. use a dry gin. Sapphire works just fine, and I actually like it better than Plymouth in this case. Save the aromatic gins for a martini, the maraschino is just going to fight with them.
  2. Go easy on the maraschino and lemon juice. I see both of those increased in some recipes, and I think they just take over at that point. The lemon juice should be softening and complementing the maraschino liqueur, but not a huge presence on its own. The maraschino liqueur, at least the Luxardo that I have, is powerful stuff. It can easily take over your drink, which really isn’t the point.


Note that the above is me breaking a few rules. For one thing, that’s Magellan gin, which looks pretty cool but doesn’t work very well here. Since it works so fabulously in a martini, save it for that. Also, I added a lemon twist, which again isn’t as good as the original recipe’s call for a cherry.


  1. The idea of combining dry gin with a cherry breaks my brain. Ow! My curiosity is piqued. Not that I don’t trust you, but may I ask what Christy thinks of this drink?

    Your photo of the Magellan is very beautiful. Looks like the lemon juice added a fetching cloudiness, giving the Magellan an even more Star Wars look than usual…Lovely.

  2. Was the Negroni really that bad? 🙂 If you’re breaking it down to easily recognizable tastes, frankly the Aviation tastes more of pez than of cherries. The cherry taste in maraschino liqueur is really quite slight, it’s one of many flavors. Christy has enjoyed a combination of gin, Fresca and maraschino liqueur, but only had a sip of one or two of my Aviations. I’ll try to make another soon and let you know what she thinks, but certainly the terror that a Negroni inspires (what’s wrong with you people?) was absent.

    Aviation is kind of an interesting looking drink, it always appears to me like a martini that someone shook like crazy. Given the taste, which is a little sweet but intriguing, it’s kind of a neat visual.

  3. Ardenstone

    Upon tasting my Aviation this evening Christy remarked, “it’s not something I mind.” <pause> “Too much.”

  4. The Negroni certainly seems to be an acquired taste, she wrote diplomatically. I am intrigued but extremely suspicious of the Aviation.