Cocktails Created from the History Books

Jump to

To get your name in the history books, you must have done something wondrous or terrible. To be remembered, you need to be considered a hero or a villain. But you only know that you have really made it when your name is given to a cocktail.
A mixologist in Colchester, UK, has created a new drink named the Bad Girl Boudica. Named after one of the area’s most notable historical figures, the sweet concoction is a closely guarded recipe created by Don Quinn.
Boudica formed a rebellion against the Romans around 2000 years ago, where she almost burned Colchester to the ground and ultimately lost her battle. Her story is still taught to schoolchildren around the country. Yet she is not the first historical figure to be immortalised in such a way.

1. Rob Roy


A drink made with scotch whiskey, Martini Rosso, Angostura Bitters and some lemon zest, this drink is always topped with a cherry. The Rob Roy is named after a famous Scottish rebel who became known as a Robin Hood character, who fell out with the Duke of Montrose and so began stealing from his lands.

The drink was invented when the story of Rob Roy was made into a Broadway musical in 1984. The nearby Waldorf Astoria (now the Empire State Building) created the drink in celebration of the new show.

2. Arnold Palmer


Arnold Palmer was the man credited with making golf popular. It helped that his career coincided with the rise of the television, but the sporting legend was considered to be one of the best golfers ever, and the term ‘to Palmer’ is still often used on the courses.

Arnold had a huge fanbase, who soon learned that his favourite drink was iced tea mixed with lemonade. They started to order it themselves, a for a long time this drink was known as a Half and Half. A few decades later, Palmer and his friends joined forces with a beverages company and Arnold Palmer Tee was born.

3. Shirley Temple


The child star with the beautiful curly locks had to have a non-alcoholic cocktail, of course, so this drink was created in her honour when she went out to eat with her family. Shirley was famous for being the first person under seven years old to command $50,000 per film, starring in classics like Heidi, The Little Princess and Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm.

Shirley died in 2014 after making a career change into politics and standing as UN Ambassador in Ghana.

So there you have it: if you want to be talked about for years after your death, have a cocktail created in your honour. It helps if you already have a reason to be famous, obviously, as every concoction needs a story behind it.

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.

More to explore

The History of the Mary Pickford Cocktail

A very fancy cocktail with an extremely glamourous namesake, the Mary Pickford cocktail was created...

Mastering the Art of the Flaming Lamborghini Cocktail

The Flaming Lamborghini is not just a cocktail; it's an experience. Known for its dramatic presentat...

Cooking With Spirits

Most of us are familiar with cooking with wine, whether we are making a delicious red wine sauce to...

Bartender's top tip

Always prioritize quality over quantity. Fresh ingredients and proper technique can transform a simple drink into an unforgettable experience for your customer.

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 Cocktails and More

Discover a host of cocktails inspired by the Paris 2024 Olympics, meet the bartenders behind the cocktails and win yourself some juicy Amazon vouchers.

Our Olympic Cocktail Hub