Summer is upon us in all its glory and it’s time to get the party started. And what better way to kick start your summer parties than by stepping into your bartending shoes.
Whether you are hosting a bash of your own or showing off your cocktail-mixing skills at a friend’s party, these time-tested vodka favorites will win you all the hearts any night of the week!
Vodka Cocktail #1: Black Russian
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This awesome vodka concoction was first mixed by Gustave Tops, a Belgian barman in 1949 who served it to the then U.S. ambassador to Luxembourg, Perle Mesta. The drink is not very elaborate itself and is basically a Russian version of Irish Coffee but as any cocktail head would tell you, the difference between white and dark liquor really makes all the difference!
To make your own Black Russian, you will need:
20ml Coffee liqueur (instructions given at the end)
Serving Glass old fashioned glass
Ice Cubes As required
Fill your Old Fashioned Glass with ice cubes. Pour the vodka on the ice and then add the coffee liqueur. Do not shake or stir the drink. Serve!
A variation of the recipe calls for the drink to be topped off with cola which makes the drink a Dirty Black Russian. But that usually just adds to calorie count and the drink is better with simple flavors anyway.
Vodka cocktail #2: Bloody Mary
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So this cocktail may be more famous as a hangover cure rather than an actual drink on its own merit, but the Bloody Mary is a wonderful brunch drink that doesn’t leave you with the guilt of getting drunk before noon!
The spiciest cocktail on the bar, the Bloody Mary was possibly named after Mary, Queen of Scots, who was famous for her love of, well, bloodshed. Gruesome history apart, the sensual drink could almost be considered diet food if you discount the generous vodka addition.
To make your own Bloody Mary, you will need:
3 oz tomato juice
1 1/2 oz vodka
1/2 oz fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
I stalk celery
Salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
1-2 tsp hot pepper sauce
1 lemon wedge for garnish
Serving Glass highball glass
Ice cubes crushed, to serve
Mix the vodka and the tomato juice with crushed ice in a cocktail mixer. Season to taste and add the sauces in desired quantities. Mix well and pour into the glass. Garnish with celery stalk and lemon wedge. Rub one lemon wedge along the rim of the glass and touch it with salt. Serve chilled.
Vodka cocktail #3: Long Island Iced Tea
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Another one of those seemingly innocent drinks, this classic drink features 5 white spirits but it works just as well made only with vodka as well. The origin of this drink is disputed- most people like to believe that it was first created by a Tennessee moonshiner named Charles Bishop in the early 1930’s as a way to sell his “wares” without being nabbed in the then “dry” state. Another claim for the drink comes from a 1970’s Long Island bartender named Robert Bott. But whatever be the birthplace of this cocktail, the Long Island Iced Tea is the closet alcoholic’s guilty pleasure!
To make your own Long Island Iced Tea, you will need:
1/2 oz vodka
1/2 oz tequila
1/2 oz triple sec
1/2 oz light rum
1/2 oz gin
1 oz sour mix
1 oz sweetened cola
1 lemon wedge (to garnish)
Ice Cubes to serve
Serving Glass Collins Glass
Pour all the spirits and the sour mix in a cocktail mixer and shake well. Put the ice cubes in the serving glass and pour the mixed spirits on top till the glass is full barring 2 inches from the top. Gradually pour in the cola and let it dissolve into the spirit itself. Garnish with lemon and serve chilled.
Vodka cocktail #4: Sex on the Beach
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This may just be the raunchiest cocktail on the bar menu, but this yummy fruity drink is a party must-have. Perfect for hot summer pool parties, the drink is really simple to put together and if you remember the proportions well enough, you can never go wrong!
To make you own Sex on the Beach, you will need:
1 1/2 oz vodka
3/4 oz peach schnapps
1/2 oz crème de cassis
2 oz orange juice
2 oz cranberry juice
1 orange slice (to garnish)
2-3 maraschino cherries (to garnish)
Ice Cubes crushed, to serve
Serving Glass Highball Glass
Mix the spirits and the fruit juices with the crushed ice using a cocktail mixer and give it a good shake. Pour the drink out in the glass and garnish with the orange slice and the cherries. To make it headier, lace it with a little vodka before serving.
Vodka cocktail # 5: Cosmopolitan
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This particular cocktail was made the phenomenal must have it is today by the super-hit TV show Sex and the City. The sensual cocktail has since been dubbed the quintessential girlie-girl drink and is always high on demand on any ladies night. The Cosmopolitan is super easy to get right but mastering it isn’t an exact science because everyone likes it customized to their own tastes!
To make your own Cosmopolitan, you will need
1-1/2 oz citron vodka
1 oz Cointreau
1/2 oz fresh lime juice
1/4 oz cranberry juice
A few laces orange peel (to garnish)
Ice cubes crushed, to serve
Serving glass cocktail glass
Pour the spirits and the fruit juices in a cocktail shaker with the crushed ice and shake well. Pour out the drink in a chilled cocktail glass and lace with the orange peel. Lace with more vodka to make it stronger or throw in more cranberry juice to make it sweeter.
1. To make homemade coffee liqueur, Combine 3 cups of sugar with 3 cups of water and add 1-1/2 tablespoons of coffee instant coffee. In a saucepan, bring the mixture to a boil over medium high heat and let it simmer over medium heat for roughly 10 minutes. Remove pan from heat and cool.
2. When the coffee is down to room temperature, add 1 quart vodka and 1 tbsp vanilla extract to it and mix well. Transfer the liquid into containers with cheesecloth covers and let it sit for 3-4 weeks in a cool, dry and dark place. Then pour into resealable air tight containers and store in the fridge.