The Steamy And Cringey Name Origins Of The Sex On The Beach Cocktail

Drinking a sex on the beach is so essential to a night out that it might even be enshrined in some ancient law that has been mysteriously drilled into our minds. It's impossible to imagine heading to a bar with friends and not sampling the fruity mixture of vodka, peach schnapps, and cranberry and orange juices. It's a recipe so simple that even a dog could make it.

Although it feels like the mainstay of bar menus has been around since before the dawn of civilization (Ever wondered why the dinosaurs never saw that asteroid coming? That's right; they were too busy drinking raunchy cocktails), the origin story of sex on the beach is found somewhere in the 1980s — although, quite unsurprisingly, the exact truth about its creation is a little hazy.

The name of sex on the beach may derive from an on-the-spot stroke of ingenuity from a Florida bartender, who instantly thought of what he believed were the two main attractions of the state: beaches and sex. However, there's more than one story that claims to have discovered sex on the beach.

Sex on the beach may be the result of a competition

The idea of a Florida bartender — undoubtedly sun-kissed, muscular, and carrying a surfboard — naming sex on the beach is something that definitely fits with the 80s romanticism. The bartender — Ted Pizio — worked at a bar called Confettis in Fort Lauderdale in 1987 and is said to have created and titled the cocktail to win a competition to sell the most peach schnapps in the city.

This is a very plausible tale — sex on the beach was never going to have been designed by a priest, after all — but is undermined by a 1982 recipe book that featured all of the ingredients mixed into a cocktail. That, of course, doesn't mean that Pizio was a cheat — it could be that it was an innocent coincidence, or that he was particularly well-read where others weren't. 

However, a common belief is that sex on the beach was formed by teaming a Fuzzy Navel (peach schnapps and orange juice) with a Cape Codder (vodka and cranberry juice).