Madeira isn’t typically regarded as a potential cocktail ingredient. However, it has been used in cocktails since the late-19th century! Thanks to renewed interest in the fortified wine, we’re starting to see adventurous bartenders use it again in their creations.

In this guide, you will discover the top 10 best Madeira wine cocktail recipes to make at home:

  1. Madeira Cobbler
  2. The Queen Of The Night
  3. Prince Of Wales
  4. The Prestidigitator
  5. The Atlantis
  6. Baltimore Eggnog
  7. Wine o’Clock
  8. Canteiro
  9. Shagbark’s Sangaree
  10. Madeira on the Rocks

Simply use the links above to jump ahead or scroll down to read them all!

Top 10 Best Madeira Cocktails

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What Are The Best Madeira Wine Cocktails?

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Before going any further, we suggest that you familiarise yourself with the different types of Madeira wine as we’ll refer to different varieties in the following guide.

1. Madeira Cobbler

Best Madeira Cocktails - Cobbler

An absolute classic and arguably the quintessential Madeira cocktail, the cobbler is a refreshing beverage that we suggest you try!

You will need the following ingredients:

  • 75 ml (2½ Oz) Dry Madeira
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Dark Rum
  • 1 Tsp Simple Syrup
  • Orange Peels
  • Blackberries

Fill a tumbler will ice to cool it while you prepare the ingredients. Shake the rum, Madeira, and simple syrup with some orange peel and blackberries. If you only have sweet Madeira, you can skip the simple syrup. Once the shaker is cold to the touch, empty the prepared glass and add fresh crushed ice.

Strain the ingredients into the tumbler and add fresh and unused fruit as garnish.

2. The Queen Of The Night

Fin de Siècle Cocktail

Although a prosecco cocktail goes by the same name, this version predates it. In fact, it first appeared in William Schmidt’s The Flowing Bowl in 1891. Today, its historical background has made it a particularly popular Madeira cocktail.

It consists of the following:

  • 45 ml (1½ Oz) Medium Dry Madeira
  • 45 ml (1½ Oz) Tawny Port
  • 1 Dash Cognac
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Rose Water
  • 8 ml (¼ Oz) Simple Syrup

Simply pour all the ingredients into a shaker filled with crushed ice and stir. Strain the ingredients into a coupe or cocktail glass. You can use rose liqueur instead of rose water. If you do, consider halving the amount of Madeira to compensate.

3. Prince Of Wales

Sarparita Cocktail

Another historical cocktail, this one is said to be treated by the then-price King Edward VII in the late-19th century. However, it actually first appeared in Drinking With Dickens that was written by Charles Dickens’ grandson.

It requires the following ingredients to make:

  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Medium-Dry Madeira
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Cognac
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Champagne
  • 1 Tsp Triple Sec
  • 1 Dash Angostura Bitters
  • 1 Cherry

Stir the ingredients in a cocktail shaker and strain into a coupe or champagne flute. Garnish with the cherry. Traditionally, it’s served in a glass mug or silver cup if you prefer.

4. The Prestidigitator

This cocktail’s somewhat odd name refers to the quick movements and secret techniques of an illusionist. It’s a somewhat classic-style cocktail with otherwise conventional ingredients. However, its history is unclear.

You’ll just need the following to make it:

  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Madeira
  • 45 ml (1½ Oz) Gin
  • 30 ml (1 Oz) Vermouth
  • 2 Dashes Orange Bitters

Simply add the ingredients to a tumbler glass with ice, stir, and serve with a cherry garnish.

5. The Atlantis

Pineapple Red Cocktail

Confusingly, Atlantis is the name shared by several cocktails that may use white rum or vodka. In this case, it was a creation by Miles Macquarrie at the Kimball House and Watchman’s in Atlanta, Georgia.

It requires just the following:

  • 30 ml (1 Oz) Rainwater Madeira
  • 45 ml (1½ Oz) Rye Whiskey
  • 30 ml (1 Oz) Bianco Vermouth
  • 2 Dashes Angostura Bitters
  • 2 Dashes Orange Bitters
  • Pineapple
  • Lemon Peel (Optional)

Muddle a small piece of pineapple into the base of a shaker and then add all the ingredients with ice. Stir until well-chilled and strain into a cocktail glass. Twist a lemon peel over the drink to express its oils. Use either a pineapple wedge or lemon twist as a garnish.

6. Baltimore Eggnog

Valentino's Delight Cocktail

Another iconic but little-known cocktail that’s been around for quite some time, this creamy creation is a delight for the gourmand among you.

It requires these ingredients:

  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Medium-Dry Madeira
  • 30 ml (1 Oz) Cognac
  • 30 ml (1 Oz) Dark Rum
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Simple Syrup
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Cream
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Milk
  • 1 Egg

Firstly, make sure your egg is very fresh. You can put it in a glass of water to check. If it sinks to the bottom, it should be fine. However, if it floats, it’s not quite fresh enough.

Add all of the ingredients to a shaker with ice. Shake vigorously until very well chilled. Strain into a large cocktail glass or coupe and garnish with chocolate sprinkles, cinnamon, and/or nutmeg.

7. Wine o’Clock

Expense Account Rum & Calvados Cocktail

Another modern cocktail, this one was created by Kal Lemma at the Watergate Hotel’s Kingbird in Washington D.C.

It requires the following to make:

  • 90 ml (3 Oz) Reserve Madeira
  • 45 ml (1½ Oz) Cognac
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Calvados
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Ginger Syrup
  • 2 Dashes Angostura Bitters
  • 2 Dashes Orange Bitters

Shake all the ingredients with ice and strain into a tumbler glass over ice. Garnish with a sprig of aromatic herbs like fennel, thyme, or rosemary. You can also add Grand Marnier foam if you have a siphon or iSi charger. It’s a little more complicated but the instructions are here.

8. Canteiro

Here’s an exciting cocktail if you’re feeling adventurous. It combines several types of Madeira and uses some dark rum and chilli pepper for a touch of spice.

You’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 30 ml (1 Oz) Sweet Madeiera
  • 22 ml (¾ Oz) Rainwater Madeira
  • 30 ml (1 Oz) Dark Rum
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Cherry Liqueur
  • 8 ml (¼ Oz) Simple Syrup
  • 1 Tsp Angostura Bitters
  • Orange Peel
  • Chilli Pepper

Add the ingredients to a shaker filled with ice, stir until chilled, and strain into a glass. Add a thin strip of chilli pepper and orange peel to garnish.

9. Shagbark’s Sangaree

Dark Red Cocktail

Created by Derek Salerno of the Shagbark in Richmond, Virginia, this flavoursome cocktail makes use of Malmsey Madeira’s unique flavours.

You’ll just need the following:

  • 60 ml (2 Oz) Malmsey Madeira
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Lemon Juice
  • 15 ml (½ Oz) Simple Syrup

Shake the ingredients with ice until chilled and strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with freshly-grated nutmeg.

10. Madeira on the Rocks

Although barely a cocktail, a Madeira on the rocks is said to be a way that the wine is occasionally enjoyed on the island. However, it might be something reserved for tourists! Either way, it’s a wonderfully mellow yet refreshing beverage.

You’ll need the following:

  • 90 ml (3 Oz) Dry Madeira
  • 30 ml (1 Oz) Campari

Just add the ingredients to a tumbler filled with ice and stir before serving.

What Next?

Now that you have read about the best Madeira cocktails, why don’t you check out some of our related guides?

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