Friday, October 4th was National Vodka Day and that motivated me to dabble with vodka cocktails. The result is the Chernobyl, a gorgeous drink that may seduce you into having more than one. If you do, remember that like roentgens, you can easily surpass the recommended exposure limit. Let’s begin by talking a little about vodka.
Vodka can be made by distilling almost anything, and is around the world. Fruits, grains and vegetables like potatoes are what we most often associate with vodka but literally anything goes as long as it contains distillable sugars.
The U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (27 CFR 5.22) defines vodka as; “neutral spirits so distilled or so treated after distillation with charcoal or other materials, as to be without distinctive character, aroma, taste, or color”.
That doesn’t sound very enticing, so why is vodka so popular? The very thing that sounds unappealing, the fact it is flavorless and colorless, is its greatest attribute. Precisely because it has no distinctive flavor like, brandy, rum, tequila, gin or whiskey it is extremely versatile. Vodka is the chameleon of alcoholic spirits that can become anything you want it to be.
Japanese Midori Liqueur is a beautiful melon flavored shade of green that instantly grabs your attention. A melon flavored cocktail sounded appealing and I ended up with something that tasted as good as it looked. It’s less boozy than most of the classics but the flavor is off the charts. One of my testers said it was the best cocktail I had ever served her. With that high praise, I call this experiment a success!
- 1–1/2 oz Russian Standard Vodka
- 1–3/4 oz Midori Liqueur
- 1/4 oz fresh lime juice
- 1/4 oz fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 oz Agave Nectar
- 1 Woodford Reserve bourbon cherry with stem for garnish
Up, In a Cocktail Glass
- Chill your cocktail glass in the freezer for 30 minutes
- Add all ingredients to a mixing glass filled halfway with ice
- Stir slowly for 30 seconds to allow time to properly chill
- Strain and pour into your chilled cocktail glass
- Garnish with a bourbon cherry
On The Rocks
- Combine ingredients as above
- Stir or shake in a cocktail shaker
- Serve in a rocks glass over ice
And just one more thing…
Midori is the Japanese word for green and has a sweet flavor from muskmelon. The traditional way to enjoy a midori cocktail is to toast someone by saying, Moshi Moshi!