The Story Behind The Sex on the Beach

Unlike Sex on the Beach’s name — which gets right to the point — the origins of the drink itself aren’t so straightforward.

Some versions of the story claim that the cocktail was invented in 1987 by a bartender named Ted Pizio who worked at Confetti’s Bar in — you guessed it — Florida. The tale goes that a peach schnapps brand called National Distribution ran a contest that awarded $1,000 to the bar that sold the most peach schnapps. In response, Pizio set out to incorporate it into a recipe of his own, and the Sex on the Beach was born. However, there’s also evidence that the recipe was featured in a 1982 American Bartenders School guidebook, which predates Ted’s story by five years.

Wherever it came from, the Sex on the Beach is downright delicious and hard not to like. To make one, all you’ll need are cranberry and orange juice, plus some vodka and peach schnapps. Garnish with an orange wedge and cocktail cherry for the final product: a candied concoction that’ll be sure to transport you to the neon-hued Fort Lauderdale spring break beaches circa ‘87.


  • 1 1/2 ounces vodka
  • 1/2 ounce peach schnapps
  • 1 ounce freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 ounce cranberry juice
  • Garnish: orange wedge, cocktail cherry


  1. Add ingredients to a shaker with ice and shake.
  2. Strain into a Collins or highball glass with fresh ice.
  3. Garnish with orange and cherry.

Rate This Recipe:

(15 votes)

Yield: 1
Calories: 267
Updated: 2023-03-08

Listen To Our Cocktail College Sex on the Beach Podcast 
The Sex on the Beach Recipe