[Originally posted on Men’sHealth.com]
BY KRISTY ALPERT, PHOTOGRAPH BY MARK ALPERT, FEBRUARY 18, 2014
The Modern Mixologist, has a simple Olympic cocktail for you: “My favorite Russian cocktail is a glass of frozen Russian vodka chasing a spoonful of Russian caviar,” he says.
Looking for something more suave?
He suggests The Sochi Shake Up.
“For this drink, I wanted to include some Russian drinking trends so I called my friend Dimitri Belyavsky in Moscow,” Abou-Ganim says. “He confirmed that indeed vodka is the only spirit base to utilize, then went on to say that northern berries such as cassis, cranberry, raspberry and more indigenous ones like ashberry, cloudberry, bilberry, whortleberry, and sea-buckthorn were often included. I also discovered when I visited Moscow that Russians drink a lot of black chai tea. I tried to combine as many of these flavors to create a unique, complex, and flavorful libation.”
So if caviar with a vodka chaser isn’t your thing, this cocktail may just be.
The Sochi Shake Up
By Tony Abou-Ganim, author of Vodka Distilled: The Modern Mixologist on Vodka and Vodka Cocktails
What you’ll need:
2 oz. vodka, such as Beluga Gold Line Noble Russian
½ oz. Crème de Cassis
1 oz. white cranberry juice or regular cranberry juice
1 oz. freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ oz. chai tea syrup *
Mint, lemon slices, and fresh berries, for garnish
How to make it:
In a mixing glass with ice, add the vodka, cassis, cranberry juice, lemon juice, and chai tea syrup. Shake until well blended. Strain into a double Old Fashioned glass filled with ice. Garnish with lemon slices, fresh berries, and a sprig of mint. Serve with a celebratory toast: Na zda-rov’-ye Ваше здоровье – “Cheers”
*To make chai tea syrup bring 16 oz. of water to a boil, remove from heat, and steep 2 chai tea bags for 10 minutes. Discard tea bags and dissolve 16 oz. of granulated sugar. Allow to cool to room temperature, bottle, and store in your refrigerator until ready to use.