Chernobyl Rocks

National Vodka Day motivated me to dabble with vodka cocktails. Chernobyl is the result, 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 Basics

The interesting thing about Vodka is it can be made by distilling almost anything. 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, 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.

The Chernobyl

Japanese Midori Liqueur is a beautiful melon flavored shade of green that instantly grabs your attention. This 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 nuclear experiment a success!

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! Print


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Midori, vodka, pineapple, agave and lime

  • Author: TJ


  • 11/2 oz Russian Standard Vodka
  • 11/2 oz Midori Liqueur
  • 1/4 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 pineapple juice
  • 1/4 oz Agave Nectar
  • 1 stemmed bourbon cherry – garnish


Up, In a Cocktail Glass

  1. Chill your cocktail glass in the freezer for 30 minutes
  2. Add all ingredients to a mixing glass with ice
  3. Stir slowly for 30 seconds to allow time to properly chill
  4. Strain and pour into your chilled cocktail glass
  5. Garnish with a bourbon cherry

On The Rocks

  1. Combine ingredients as above
  2. Stir or shake in a cocktail shaker
  3. Serve in a rocks glass over ice
  4. Garnish with a cherry

Coupe Glass Nuclear Explosion

  1. Freeze a coupe glass in a freezer, and chill the bottled Midori in the fridge
  2. Shake the remaining ingredients until cold and strain them back into the top of the shaker
  3. Pour the midori into a large shot glass, invert the coupe glass over the shot glass and hold them tightly together while turning both of them upright
  4. Place a cherry in the coupe glass, pour the shaken ingredients into the coupe, then remove the shot glass releasing the midori, creating the “explosion”