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The Metaxa Summer Sour Cocktail Recipe

Cocktail of the Week: This week’s recipe is tart, refreshing, and easy to make at home.

By Samantha Coles

Whisky, tequila, rum… whichever your preferred base spirit, there’s nothing quite like the sweet-yet-sharp taste of a sour cocktail. 

This week’s cocktail recipe, the Summer Sour, is tart, refreshing, and easy to make at home with Metaxa. The beloved Greek spirit dates back to 1888 when Spyros Mexata, a descendant of a family of silk merchants, created the drink. 

[See also: Tasting Notes: The Daring Courvoisier Mizunara Cognac]

Often referred to as Greek brandy, although technically it can’t be classified as a brandy due to its production process. Metaxa is made from a blend of grape distillates and aged Muscat wines from Samos, a Greek island famed for making aromatic wine; there’s an indigenous grape variety grown on the island. 

The Metaxa master, Constantions Raptis, carefully selects the Muscat wines. Constantions is only the fifth master since the house was created. 

The selected wines and wine distillates are then aged separately in oaks casks, allowing the flavors to develop and mature. There are several aging stages, known as ‘bouquet levels,’ which are indicated by a number on the bottle’s label. 

The numbers range from three to twelve; the higher the number, the longer the aging period and greater complexity. This process brings a rich smoothness to the spirit, with flavors of dried fruits, honey, herbs and vanilla. 

While it is usually enjoyed straight or on the rocks, it can also be a delectable addition to a number of cocktails. The Summer Sour uses Metaxa 12 Stars which has tasting notes of orange peel, coffee and chocolate. 


– 1.5 oz Metaxa 12 Stars
– 0.50 oz lemon juice
– 0.25 oz sugar syrup
– Optional: 0.50 egg white
– 2 dashes Angostura Bitters
– Garnish: Lemon zest


Pour all ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake.  Strain over ice into a double old fashioned glass. Garnish with a lemon zest.

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