Archive for vodka

The Electric Screwdriver

Posted in Booze News and Events, Classic Cocktails, What I'm Mixing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 16, 2014 by cocktailvultures

Electric S

Electric Screwdriver

What’s great about the Screwdriver? It’s easy to make, with readily-available ingredients: vodka and orange juice. But these can also prove its downfall: overly-medicinal vodka, and worse, fake OJ squirting out of a gun behind a bar, or glop-glop-glopping from a plastic bottle.

We say nay. The Cocktail Vultures like nothing more than a good home improvement.

Naturally, we turned to fresh fruit when we decided to make a better Screwdriver. We torqued it up a bit by adding zesty lemon and grapefruit. That lent it zing, along with floral notes. And we tossed in orange bitters because we just can’t leave well enough alone.

When choosing a vodka for this drink, open the bottle and take a deep whiff. If all you can think of is rubbing alcohol, chances are it will make your cocktail too medicinal and undermine all that fresh fruitiness you just squeezed into it.

To get the right amount of zest, which adds a wonderful fragrance, just grab your grater and draw it lightly a few times over the skin of the fruit, doing your best to only reap the colored part and not the white stuff.

To an iced shaker, add:

3 ounces freshly-squeezed orange juice
1/2 ounce freshly-squeezed lemon juice
1 ounce freshly-squeezed grapefruit juice
2-3 ounces vodka (adjust to your personal taste)
2 dashes orange bitters
Zest of grapefruit
Zest of lemon
Zest of orange

Shake it vigorously, and strain into an ice-filled highball glass. Garnish with a cherry and some fruit wheels.

Want to use your Electric Screwdriver at its highest efficiency setting? Make a pitcher of these for that brunch table or deck party.

To a large, ice-filled glass pitcher, add:

12 ounces orange juice
2 ounces lemon juice
4 ounces grapefruit juice
8-12 ounces vodka, to taste or the drinking habits of your crowd
4-5 dashes orange bitters

Stir this thoroughly and throw in some slices of citrus or a few fresh mint leaves.

Always drink responsibly; always drink well.

Persephone’s Bouquet

Posted in Booze News and Events, Classic Cocktails, What I'm Mixing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 14, 2014 by cocktailvultures

blood copyPersephone’s Bouquet

The Queen of the Underworld and the abducted bride of Hades, Persephone has had a lot of cocktails named for her. After all, this goddess not only represents Spring and rebirth, but she famously made the trip up from Hell while munching on a pomegranate. What cocktail creator doesn’t love a myth that starts with an ingredient?

We wanted to make a drink for Persephone that included her favorite fruit, along with fragrant jasmine and ripe blood oranges. It’s a bouquet worthy of honoring her return to the Earth, as a long winter gives way again to sweet fecundity.

To an iced shaker, add:

2 ounces Pomegranate juice
2 ounces freshly-squeezed Blood Orange juice
2.5 ounces Vodka
1 ounce Jasmine Syrup *

Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. We think this cocktail’s brilliant color requires no garnish, but if you’d like to add a sliver of blood orange peel, it would give us no pain.

Always drink responsibly; always drink well.

* Jasmine Syrup:
Brew jasmine tea and add an equal amount of sugar. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Store in refrigerator for up to one week.

Fuzzy Wuzzy

Posted in Booze News and Events, Classic Cocktails, Girl Drink Drunk, What I'm Mixing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 13, 2014 by cocktailvultures

fwFuzzy Wuzzy

One evening in the lab, the Vultures were discussing trendy drinks of the past and just tossing some names around. When we got to the Fuzzy Navel, silence reigned and then one of us said:

“That was a damned good drink. Let’s make one now.”

There are a lot of products available lately with fake flavoring and hideous colors and your Vultures are happy to rake them over the coals. But peach schnapps and peach liqueur have always been reliable, inexpensive ingredients. Peach is one of those flavors that remains bright and fresh-tasting even when some artificiality is involved. Enjoy your peachy cocktails in their many variations, and try this pretty new one we’ve created for you.

To an iced shaker, add:

2 ounces vodka
3/4 ounce cranberry syrup
1 ounce freshly-squeezed orange juice
1/2 ounce peach schnapps or liqueur (our favorite:

Shake vigorously and pour unstrained into glass. Garnish with orange wedge and add a straw.

Cranberry Syrup

To a saucepan, add:

2 cups fresh cranberries
3/4 to 1 cup light brown sugar
Water to cover berries

Keep stirring over medium heat until the cranberries start popping their skins. Remove from heat and let stand to cool. Strain and bottle. Store in refrigerator up to 5 days.

Shipwrecked Salted Caramel Martini

Posted in Booze News and Events, Classic Cocktails, What I'm Mixing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 16, 2013 by cocktailvultures


Salted Caramel Martini

We just adore gilding the lily around here. Our Salted Caramel Martini was so popular, we thought we’d go back to the lab and see what else we could do with it. It’s still a simple pour with only two ingredients. However, after tasting Brinley Gold Shipwrecked Vanilla Rum (!The%20Rum|gallery_page), we decided to swap it for the vanilla vodka — a wonderful way to enrich the flavors in what is definitely a dessert cocktail. We also kicked up the garnish a bit by rimming the glass with a mixture of brown sugar and Kosher salt — really delivers the sweet/salty we all want in a salted caramel.

To a shaker filled with ice, add:

1.5 ounces caramel vodka
(We recommend
.5 ounce vanilla rum

Prepare chilled glass by running a fresh piece of lemon peel around the rim; roll the rim in the brown sugar and salt mixture. Sprinkle the glass lightly with some chunky Kosher salt.

Shake vigorously. Strain into the prepared glass.

Always drink responsibly; always drink well.

The Vodka Blush (revisited)

Posted in Booze News and Events, Classic Cocktails, What I'm Mixing with tags , , , , , , on April 11, 2013 by cocktailvultures

vodka blush

The Vodka Blush is a cocktail created by Peggy Nadramia.

“Mr. Castevet came in, holding in both hands a small tray on which four cocktail glasses ran over with clear pink liquid. “Mr. Woodhouse? A Vodka Blush. Have you ever tasted one? They’re very popular in Australia,” Mr. Castevet said. He took the final glass and raised it to Rosemary and Guy. “To our guests,” he said. “Welcome to our home.”

“The Vodka Blushes were tart and very good.”

–from Rosemary’s Baby by Ira Levin, © 1967

And so was born the question: how do you make a Vodka Blush? Tell it dirty jokes? Compliment it profusely?

We suggest you follow the instructions below, and become the hit of your holiday party—whatever holiday it might be.


Cocktail shaker
Cocktail glass
Measuring jigger


2 1/2 ounces Vodka
1 ounce freshly-squeezed lime juice (strained)
1/2 ounce Grenadine

[Since the invention of this cocktail I have retooled it to account for the vast improvement in available grenadine as well as the pomegranate products to make it at home. Dissolve a cup of sugar in an equal amount of pomegranate juice (such as Pom) and you’re done.PN]

Fill shaker 2/3 with fresh ice. Add ingredients. Shake and strain into chilled cocktail glass.

Enjoy, and spill a little on the carpet in memory of Minnie and Roman!

Always drink responsibly.

The Grasshopper ala Cocktail Vultures

Posted in Booze News and Events, Classic Cocktails, Girl Drink Drunk, What I'm Mixing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 4, 2013 by cocktailvultures


The Grasshopper a la Cocktail Vultures

A sweet, creamy, minty cocktail that became popular alongside her pink sister, the Pink Squirrel, with the same crowd and for the same reasons. When tweaking the original recipe, the Cocktail Vultures turned once again to ice cream. And we threw out the Creme de Cacao and brought in a quality chocolate vodka. The chocolate flavor in most Creme de Cacao is phony and barely there anyway, and all it lends is a heavy stickiness. The ice cream provides sweetness, and the vodka gives a better jolt of chocolate as well as a pleasant kick that makes this more than a girl-drink.

To an iced shaker, add:

2 ounces Creme de Menthe
2 ounces chocolate vodka
3 ounces melted vanilla ice cream

Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Created 9/2/2010

The Carnosaur, the bloodiest Bloody Mary

Posted in Booze News and Events, Classic Cocktails, Drink It Like a Man, What I'm Mixing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 26, 2013 by cocktailvultures

carno2 copy

If you’re a regular reader of our blog, you know we’re big fans of the classic Bloody Mary (see But we’re Vultures, and we’re always on the lookout for more.

Anywhere there’s brunch, there’s a Bloody Mary. And brunch starts to proliferate as Spring approaches and grills come out. The smoky scent of grilling meat, the clink of glasses… A Bloody Mary — with meat.

First, take a nice piece of London Broil, your favorite cut, and rub it down with some steak seasoning. (We used a Montreal steak spice). Grill for 5 minutes on each side, then place the meat between two plastic cutting boards and press the juices out into a convenient container.

To an iced shaker, add:

2 ounces vodka
4 ounces tomato or vegetable juice
1 ounce meat juice extrusion
1/2 ounce freshly-squeezed lemon juice
1/2 ounce Demitri’s Spices (

Shake vigorously. Strain into an ice-filled highball glass. Add a skewered, thin slice of the prepared London Broil, as well as a straw and some of your favorite Bloody Mary garnishes. Ours include celery, olives and lemon wedges. Go nuts! This drink is a fragrant, fun celebration.

carno meat

carno blood