National Cosmopolitan Day Date in the current year: May 7, 2024

National Cosmopolitan Day May 7 is a great day to go out with friends and enjoy an iconic cocktail because it is National Cosmopolitan Day. It is one of the many fun holidays created by freelance writer and editor Jace Shoemaker-Galloway, nicknamed the “Queen of Holidays”.

The cosmopolitan, informally known as the cosmo, is a cocktail made with vodka, triple sec (typically Cointreau), cranberry juice, and lime juice. It is one of the official cocktails recognized by the International Bartenders Association, listed as “a contemporary classic” on the IBA official cocktail list.

The origin of the modern cosmopolitan is murky and disputed. Pioneers of Mixing at Elite Bars 1903–1933, published in 1934, includes a recipe for a cocktail named Cosmopolitan Daisy, consisting of gin, Cointreau, lemon juice, and raspberry syrup. However, it is unclear whether the present-day cosmo indeed derives from the Cosmopolitan Daisy.

The cosmopolitan as we know it probably emerged sometime in the 1970s. According to the most widely accepted version, the cocktail originated in the gay scene in Provincetown, Massachusetts, then moved west to Cleveland and Minneapolis, and finally landed in San Francisco, where it became popular at upscale fern bars.

According to another origin story, the cocktail was created by bartender Neal Murray at the Cork & Cleaver steak house in Minneapolis in 1975. Murray added a splash of cranberry juice to a Kamikaze (a cocktail consisting of equal parts vodka, triple sec, and lime juice), and the first person to taste the drink exclaimed, “How cosmopolitan!” Another person credited with the invention of the cosmo is Cheryl Cook from South Beach, Florida, who reportedly created it in 1985 or 1986.

Be that as it may, the current version of the iconic cocktail is believed to have been first mixed at The Odeon, a restaurant in New York City, in 1989. It is credited to bartenders Toby Cecchini and Melissa Huffsmith-Roth, or sometimes solely to Cecchini. The cosmo gained popularity in the 1990s, in part thanks to Madonna being spotted while drinking a cosmopolitan. It experienced another surge in popularity in the early 2000s thanks to being the drink of choice of Carrie Bradshaw, the main protagonist of the popular television series Sex and the City.

The IBA cosmopolitan recipe calls for 40 ml lemon-flavored vodka (Vodka Citron), 15 ml Cointreau, 15 ml fresh lime juice, and 30 ml cranberry juice. The ingredients are mixed in an ice-filled cocktail shaker and than strained into a large cocktail glass. The cosmopolitan is typically served in a martini glass and garnished with a lemon twist or a slice of lime.

Cocktail enthusiast Jace Shoemaker-Galloway created National Cosmopolitan Day to celebrate the beloved cocktail that is very easy to make yet delicious and sophisticated. You can observe this “spirited” holiday by going out for cosmos, throwing a cocktail party, or inviting your friends over for a Sex and the City marathon (with cosmos, of cause!). And don’t forget to post about the holiday on social media with the hashtag #NationalCosmopolitanDay.

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National Cosmopolitan Day, unofficial holidays, food days, cosmopolitan, popular cocktails