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The 5 best first date drinks to order and impress

sunset cocktails - ballantine's

First dates are nerve wracking – fact. It doesn’t matter whether it’s your first ever first date, or if you’re a seasoned dater, the anticipation will always lead to sweaty palms, a thumping heart and probably a good helping of awkwardness.

While it’s impossible to be completely prepared for a first date, there are some things you can decide on beforehand to make it as smooth as possible. One of these things is what you’re going to drink. 

First date drinks are often a key component, and it’s easy to have a mind blank when ordering, or overthink the whole thing.

The first date drink you pick says a lot about you. On a first date, your companion is looking for every hint and clue about your personality and lifestyle. Your oldest friends may not bat an eyelid at what beverage you order, but your date will take note.

That’s why we recommend having a few reliable first date drink orders in your back pocket – drinks that suit you and what you want to demonstrate to your date, and that you will feel comfortable ordering and most importantly, enjoy drinking. 

First date drinks shouldn’t be too fussy. You’re best off avoiding ordering something that’s going to take the bartender ten minutes to make, or anything that needs lots of input from you. We think the best first date drinks are the old reliable classics. 

Here are five that are always sure to make a great first impression…

Ballantines’ & Cola

Starting off with something super simple – whisky and cola

You just can’t go wrong with this classic. It’s an unassuming drink that won’t reveal too much about you, but one thing it will demonstrate is great taste.

Where you’re enjoying first date drinks, how formal and informal the setting is, how old you are… all of that is irrelevant. Whisky and cola is a refreshing drink for everyone and for all occasions.

It’s also a quick and easy first date drink for your bartender to make, so you’ll have a drink in your hand in no time.

ballantines finest whisky cola

Whisky & Coke

Two’s company and three’s a crowd pleaser. Mix up this three ingredient classic to kick off a night with friends.


Mint Julep


If you’re feeling the heat on your first date, then a Mint Julep is the ideal refreshing whisky cocktail to calm your nerves.

This is a classy first date cocktail that’s great for summer drinks on a rooftop bar, at the beach or in a romantic city back street. 

Whisky, fresh mint leaves, sugar syrup and ice tend to be the traditional ingredients, but you can mix it up (like we have done with our Spiced Julep) and ask your bartender to add some tangy lime juice and fresh ginger if you’re feeling a little adventurous.

However you enjoy your mint julep, it’s a delicious first date drink that you can always rely upon.



If you want to show your date that you have a fiery side, then pick the classic Penicillin as your first date drink.

This is a cocktail that packs a serious punch. It uses flavours that are well known to pair perfectly with malty whisky – lemon, ginger and honey. 

While the Penicillin is one of our favourite first date drinks, we would recommend giving it a good try before you go on your date, as the punchy notes may otherwise take you off guard!

Old Fashioned


The Old Fashioned is one of the most traditional cocktails out there, and will show your date that you have excellent taste.

This first date drink can be made with either bourbon or whisky, plus bitters and orange, and is given a sweet contrast with sugar. It’s another classy cocktail that suits all people, personalities and places. 

Order an old fashioned on your first date, and your companion will think you’re anything but – it’s a whisky cocktail that exudes style.

ballantines B7 old fashioned

Old Fashioned

Our favourite way to enjoy an Old Fashioned is with Ballantine’s 7 Bourbon Barrel Finish, with a couple of dashes of orange bitters to complement the sweet notes of the whisky.


Ballantine’s & Tonic Water


We’re ending this list of first date drinks with a simple yet incredibly refreshing option – whisky and tonic.

This is a great choice if you’re a fan of a longer drink over a shorter cocktail, so it’s one to order if first date nerves have given you a dry mouth and a raging thirst.

Whisky tastes great with plain tonic water, or you could try it with one of the many flavoured tonics that are readily available today. Any good bartender should be able to advise you, and they should also add plenty of fresh fruit to your highball, to make this long drink even more refreshing.

Whisky and tonic is another unassuming first date drink that will provide a little mystery, and make your companion thirsty for more clues about your unique personality.

Now you have five delicious first date drink options that are guaranteed to help you make an excellent first impression. 

Give them a try, see which suits your taste and personality, and relax in the knowledge that you’ll always have a reliable first date drink order in mind.

Ballantine's & Tonic - Ballantine's

Whisky Tonic

A G&T without the G, Ballantine’s & Tonic Water is a real thirst quencher for those hot summer evenings.

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If you’re interested in learning more about some great whisky drinks, our collection is a great place to start. If you like the classics, want to try something exciting like a dessert cocktail or looking for a twist on a favourite, we have something to suit you.

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