Milo Ventimiglia and Mandy Moore as Jack and Rebecca in This Is Us

Here's How To Make That This Is Us Cocktail For The Series Finale

If you're 21 or older, of course.

by Ani Bundel
Ron Batzdorff/NBC

This Is Us is a down-to-earth show in which the characters on the screen live the same middle-class American lives as many of its viewers. They order orange chicken from the local Chinese place; they drink beer at bars. Their kids eat mac and cheese and argue against vegetables. But the show’s penultimate episode went for a deep cut, bringing in a cocktail that isn’t necessarily familiar to 21st-century viewers. So, what is a vesper, and why is it so crucial to Rebecca’s This Is Us ending?

Warning: Super mild spoilers for This Is Us Season 6, Episode 17 follow. Going into the show’s penultimate episode, everyone knew it was the end of the road for matriarch Rebecca Pearson. But the show surprised audiences by going with a slightly different metaphor. Rebecca experienced her exit from the mortal plane as a train ride in a fancy art deco train, like something out of an Agatha Christie novel. As she told her guide, William, her father used to promise her that one day, the two of them would take a ride in an old-school train like that, “the kind where people wear tuxedos and drink vespers” — not that 8-year-old Rebecca knew what a vesper was, but that didn’t matter.

When Rebecca reached the train’s restaurant car, she was offered a limoncello, but instead, she decided to have that vesper her father always wanted. After all, it was the appropriate choice for the moment.

On This Is Us, William described a vesper as “a martini with gin, vodka, and Lillet, shaken never stirred.” As he noted with a wink, the cocktail is associated with James Bond. However, the show did not mention author Ian Fleming actually invented the drink in his first novel, Casino Royale, and the cocktail is named for double agent and Bond girl Vesper Lynd. The drink was fictional until the Bond movie was release, and people began asking for vespers in bars. It was a pop culture sensation of the early 1960s, coinciding with Rebecca’s childhood.

With one more episode to go, fans have already seized on the cocktail as the way to celebrate This Is Us’ series finale. (It’ll also come in handy for anyone planning a James Bond-themed celebration for the next set of 007 films.) Here’s a rundown of what you’ll need and how to make it, according to

Vesper Ingredients

  • 3 oz gin
  • 1 oz vodka
  • 1/2 oz Lillet Blanc aperitif
  • 1 lemon rind twist

Vesper Recipe

  1. Place gin, vodka, and Lillet Blanc into a mixer with ice
  2. Shake (or stir until well chilled)
  3. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass
  4. Squeeze lemon twist over the drink to get 3-4 drops of lemon oil
  5. Rub twist along the rim of the glass
  6. Place twist carefully on the edge of the cocktail
  7. Serve

This Is Us: The Final Season’s last episode airs on Tuesday, May 24, at 9 p.m. ET on NBC and streams the next day on Hulu.