Drinking Your Dinner: 5 Calorie-Laden Classic Cocktails

Vintage cocktails are undeniably the booze craze of the moment. Blame it on Mad Men. Blame it on "getting back to our roots" and people starting victory gardens once again. Blame it on books like Ted Haigh's Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails. But classic cocktails are back in a big way.

And although you may feel highly cultured and quite elegant sipping on your French 75 -- and certainly above all the plebes downing Jaeger bombs and pounding Bud Light on draft -- you should keep one thing in mind: Just because that cocktail comes in a pretty glass and cost you $10 doesn't mean it's any better for you than a regular old margarita.

Liquor is one of the most carb- and calorie-laden things we can put into our bodies with very little payoff other than the temporary feeling of being smarter, more attractive and occasionally invincible (emphasis on "temporary" and "feeling.").

There's a term for this in the nutrition world: empty calories. Sure, 250 calories for a drink doesn't sound bad in principle until you realize that No. 1, you aren't going to drink just one of those Sidecars and No 2., your body is getting absolutely no nutrients from those calories, and therefore you've just wasted that caloric intake and will have to eat or drink something at least moderately healthy to make up for it.

Below is a list of five of the most high-calorie vintage cocktails out there, as well as suggestions for alternatives if you're still in the boozing mood.

5. French 75: 175 calories, most of them from sugar and gin (which isn't the highest-calorie liquor you can drink, although it's up there). Instead, try a mimosa. You'll still get a sweet drink with a splash of champagne, but you'll also get some Vitamin C from the orange juice and fewer calories overall.

4. Vodka Martini: 210 calories, which can be slightly decreased if you leave out the olives. A gin martini has fewer calories, clocking in at 125 (without olives). You can also try a gimlet, which has around 110 calories and comes with a tiny Vitamin C blast from the lime juice.

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Katharine Shilcutt