The World's Most Alcoholic Cocktails

2nd April 2024

Jump to


Among the vast spectrum of cocktails that have graced bars and tables around the globe, there exists a category that commands both awe and caution: the exceptionally high-alcohol concoctions. These are not your average Friday night mixes but are instead known for their potent strength and the skill required to craft them. This blog piece ventures into the realm of the most alcoholic cocktails known around the world, spotlighting creations that have not only made a mark for their taste and presentation but also for their formidable alcohol content.

From historic mixes that have stood the test of time to modern-day concoctions that push the limits of what a cocktail can be, our exploration covers a range of drinks that are as diverse in origin as they are in composition. Whether it's the allure of absinthe mixed with champagne in the Death in the Afternoon or the daring blend of multiple rums in the Zombie Cocktail, each drink offers a unique experience.

But with great potency comes great responsibility, and this guide serves as both an introduction to these iconic beverages and a reminder of the importance of sipping sensibly. So, let's raise a glass to the art of cocktail making and the adventurous spirit of those who appreciate these potent pours. Welcome to a journey through the world's most alcoholic cocktails.

Generally, cocktails tend to have a high alcohol content anyway. A traditional cocktail can be made more potent by trading a couple of the ingredients. For example, upgrading your vodka to Devil Springs will certainly put a kick in your Woo Woo. Or swapping your Bacardi for their 151 rum will certainly rev up your Mojito. But some creations are downright deadly. This list of the most alcoholic cocktails is not for the faint hearted, and drinkers should remember to sip sensibly. Chugging these too fast will result in a very early night!


Death in the Afternoon

This is a simple combination of Absinthe and champagne. Absinthe on its own is very potent at 144 proof. It was banned in America for a long time due to its hallucinogenic properties, and its potential to turn mild-mannered drinkers into angry, fighting machines. Add a few bubbles to the spirit, and its alcoholic affects are magnified.

Death In The Afternoon cocktail recipe

  • 10ml Absinthe
  • 135ml Champagne / prosecco
  • Teaspoon Sugar Syrup

Add absinthe and sugar syrup to a champagne flute and stir. Top up with chilled champagne. Garnish with a lemon zest twist and a rose petal, then serve.

View the full recipe

Jungle Juice

There is quite a lot of preparation involved in this punch. A large bowl is filled with fresh fruit, and then a whole bottle of grain alcohol is poured in and left to sit overnight. Everclear is the preferred choice of spirit as it is 190 proof, but it is banned in 13 American states. There is a less potent version available, which will still knock your socks off. Those who cannot stomach the idea of drinking it neat are allowed to add soda.

Fervex cocktail recipe

  • 15ml Cointreau
  • Dash Lemon Juice
  • 15ml Energy drink

Shake Cointreau and lemon together in a cocktail shaker with ice. Strain carefully into a shot glass and top up with red bull before serving.

View the full recipe

Aunt Roberta Cocktail

There are no mixers in this drink. Not even a tiny lemon garnish. It is 100% alcohol, and very, very wicked. Made with absinthe, gin, vodka, brandy and blackberry liqueur, it is probably best to stick to just one of these on a night out.

Aunt Roberta cocktail recipe

  • 30ml Brandy
  • 90ml Vodka
  • 60ml Absinthe
  • 45ml Gin
  • 30ml Blackberry Liqueur

Pour all ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake well then strain into chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange peel twist and serve.

View the full recipe

Pardon the interruption

Did you know that you can become a member for free, taking your cocktail making skills up to level 11. You can save your My Bar ingredients, make tasting notes, have personalised Tried and Want to try lists and more.

Zombie Cocktail

Throughout NYC there is a one drink limit per person. True to its name, people have been known to pass out before finishing their cocktail. It is made with 151 rum, white rum, gold rum, dark rum and apple brandy. It also contains a small amount of orange, pineapple and lime juice. Delicious, complicated, and zombifying.

Zombie cocktail recipe

  • 20ml Lime juice
  • 45ml Gold rum
  • 1 teaspoon Grenadine
  • 45ml Jamaican rum
  • 30ml White rum
  • 15ml Falernum
  • Dash Angostura Bitters
  • 6 drops Aniseed liqueur

Add all the ingredients to a blender with ice and blend until smooth. Pour into a highball glass. Garnish with a sprig of mint and serve.

View the full recipe

Irish Car Bomb

The Irish know how to drink, and this cocktail is a testament to their strong livers. A bottle of Guinness is poured into a glass, and a shot of whiskey is added to it. A shot glass full of Baileys is placed inside. The aim is to drink it quickly, before it curdles. On the outside, anyway. You know it will still curdle in your stomach!

Irish Car Bomb cocktail recipe

  • 30ml Bailey's
  • Top up Cola
  • 30ml Whiskey

Fill a shot glass full of Baileys. Put the whisky into a tumbler without ice. Top up with coke, leaving about a three centimetre gap from the top. Drop the shot of Baileys into the tumbler and serve.

View the full recipe


In conclusion, the world of cocktails offers an extensive palette of flavors, experiences, and, importantly, alcohol content. From the deceptively serene Death in the Afternoon, combining absinthe with champagne, to the unadulterated potency of the Aunt Roberta, these concoctions are not just drinks but adventures in a glass.

While the allure of pushing the boundaries with high-alcohol cocktails like Jungle Juice or the Zombie Cocktail might tempt the daring, it's crucial to approach these potent beverages with respect and moderation. Remember, the goal is to enjoy the intricate layers and unique tastes of these meticulously crafted drinks, not to end the night prematurely.

So, whether you're a seasoned cocktail aficionado or a curious newcomer, let this list be both a guide and a gentle warning. Here's to enjoying responsibly, savoring each sip, and appreciating the art and history behind some of the most alcoholic cocktails in the world. Cheers to safe and memorable experiences, one carefully measured drink at a time.

More to explore

Go nuts for these cocktail and snack pairings!

It’s not uncommon to see a bowl of salted peanuts on the bar of any fine cocktail establishment. The...

The History of the Screwdriver Cocktail

All eyes are on Russia this month, with the 2018 World Cup well underway and just a few more matches...

The History of Cocktails

Our blogs posts regularly focus on the history of some of our most-loved classic cocktails, but the...

Bartender's top tip

Preparation is key. Have all your ingredients ready before your start mixing, it'll keep the flavours fresh and your cocktails tasting even better.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Get tips straight into your inbox.

Upgrade your mixology

Become a member for free taking your cocktail making skills up to level 11.

  • Save your bar forever
  • Access to our Cocktail Creator, allowing you to create your own wonderful concoctions.
  • Save cocktails to personalised 'Tried' and 'Want to try' lists
  • Create and record tasting notes on cocktails
  • Create lists of cocktails to share with friends and family
  • A pesonalised MyBar URL, allowing you to share everything you can make with friends
  • And much more ... (what to buy next, measurement choices, search personalisation...)
Register now

Olympic cocktail competition

Submit your best olympic themed cocktails and be in with a chance of winning fame and gloary (and amazon gift vouchers).

Anyone can enter; we want to see your Olympic Sprintz, your Breaking Backflip and your Sailing Seas Sour.

Find out more