Cocktail history is often nebulous and frequently questionable. In the case of the Singapore Sling, the story changes depending on who you ask.

Created by Ngiam Tong Boon at the Raffles Hotel, the Singapore Sling was born anywhere from pre-1910 to 1915. The original recipe has been lost and the current recipe is, at best, an educated guess.

Regardless of the accuracy of the recipe, the Singapore Sling is still served at the Raffles long bar. It is a legendary drink not only because of its history, but because it is mighty tasty (the truest test of a cocktail’s staying power.) One of the drink’s singular ingredients is Cherry Heering. Created in 1818, this oddly named Danish liqueur was created by Peter Heering using Danish cherries, spices, grain neutral alcohol, and sugar.

The resulting liqueur has a deeper, more intense flavor profile than kirsch, a cherry-based eau de vie, or Maraschino, the Italian Marasche cherry liqueur that includes the crushed pits which add an almond flavor. While Cherry Heering lends its character to a number of classic drinks like Remember the Maine, the liqueur’s claim to fame is the Singapore Sling.

So on the occasion of the cocktail’s 100th (if we use 1915 as its date of creation) anniversary, Peter F. Heering challenged bartenders around the world to create a sling menu. Five bartenders were chosen to reunite at the Raffles Hotel to fight for the winning sling. Below are a sampling of the five winning sling variations as chosen by a panel of judges that included David Wondrich, Joaquin Simo, Julie Reiner, Sam Ross, Andy Seymour, and Tony Cecchini.

Chris Cross

Chris Cross

Photo Courtesy of Cherry Heering

Chris-Cross Bitter Sling

Courtesy of Christoffer Johansson

Ingredients:

  • 20 ml Antica Formula
  • 20 ml Suze
  • 20 ml Cherry Heering
  • 50 ml Grapefruit and Lemon (50/50 mix)
  • 20 ml Honey
  • Cava Dry Sparkling Wine, to Top
  • 3 dashes Orange and Mandarin Bitters

Preparation: Throw to combine. Serve in Collins glass on ice. Garnish orange zest, maraschino cherry and mint.


Cup Cake Sling

Photo Courtesy of Cherry Heering

The Cup Cake Sling

Courtesy of Matthias Aso, Australia

Ingredients:

  • 25 ml Cherry Heering
  • 10 ml Cocoa Liqueur
  • 40 ml Don Julio Blanco
  • 10 ml Lime Juice
  • 30 ml Pineapple Juice
  • 2 dashes Angostura Bitters

Preparation: Shake and strain all ingredients, except Cherry Heering. Top with Heering and Sesame Foam. Garnish with Sesame Seeds and sprinkles.


Tiger Lily

Photo Courtesy of Cherry Heering

Tiger Lily

Courtesy of Richard Grimsey, Ireland

Ingredients:

  • 25 ml Bushmills Whiskey
  • 25 ml Cherry Heering
  • 12 1/2 ml Ginger Syrup
  • 12 ml Fresh Lemon Juice

Preparation: Shake and strain over ice. Top with Tiger Beer. Garnish with fresh ginger, lemon wedge, and fresh cherry.


Tiger Plum

Tiger Plum

Photo Courtesy of Cherry Heering

Tiger Plum

Courtesy of Hungie Fong, Hong Kong

Ingredients:

  • 40 ml Gin, such as Beefeater
  • 20 ml Cherry Heering
  • 10 ml Plum Wine
  • 10 ml Tio Pepe
  • 15 ml Lemon Juice
  • 10 ml Simple Syrup
  • 2 dashes Orange Bitters
  • 2 dashes Angostura Aromatic Bitters
  • Top up with Soda Water

Preparation: Shake and strain. Top up with soda water. Garnish with dehydrated orange wheel and pineapple leaves.


100 of a Tiger

100 of a Tiger

Photo Courtesy of Cherry Heering

100 of a Tiger

Courtesy of Jeremy Lafrance, France

Ingredients:

  • 40 ml Whisky
  • 20 ml Lemon Juice
  • 20 ml Cherry Heering
  • 15 ml Sirop de Jasmin
  • Ginger Beer (Preferably Homemade)

Preparation: Shake and strain. Top with ginger beer. Garnish with raspberry and mint.