Posted: Dec 03, 2013 10:00 AM
Some of the best cocktails were created before Prohibition, including this Aviation cocktail. A classic gin cocktail, it's one you'll be glad didn't get lost through the course of history. Shake one up for yourself and see what we're talking about!

Created before Prohibition, the Aviation cocktail is no stranger to controversy. The original recipe was first published in Hugo Ensslin's book, Recipes for Mixed Drinks. This version called for a mixture of gin, lemon juice and two dashes of maraschino and creme de violette liqueurs. However, in 1930, The Savoy Cocktail Book was released with a recipe for the Aviation cocktail that did not include the creme de violette. Some years later, creme de violette disappeared from the American market and that was the end of the sky blue version of the Aviation. That is, until Rothman and Winter reintroduced a version of creme de violette to the states in 2007.

With the release of this creme de violette came the revival of the Aviation cocktail. And that's when the real controversy started. Some people insist that the drink should be made with the original recipe first published by Ensslin. Some argue that the current version of creme de violette isn't good enough and therefore should be left out of the drink. This all leads to an even bigger argument about the changing of ingredients in classic cocktails. Seems people will always have differences of opinion, even when it comes to our beloved alcoholic beverages.

So, as we approach the anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition on Dec. 5, it's a good time to raise your glass with a cocktail that has almost as much controversy as the ban on alcohol had back in the 1900s. But we'll let you decide whether or not to include the creme de violette in your Aviation cocktail. After all, you'll be the one drinking it.

Aviation cocktail

Serves 1


  • 2 ounces dry gin
  • 1/2 ounce fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 ounce Luxardo Maraschino liqueur
  • 1/4 ounce Rothman and Winter Creme de Violette


  1. Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
  3. Garnish with a lemon peel or a maraschino cherry.

NOTe^ If you're making the Aviation cocktail without the creme de violette, increase the maraschino liqueur to 1/2 ounce.

allParenting Aviation cocktail

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