Holidays are the time for making spirits bright, right?
Instead of buying expensive flavored spirits for all your holiday cocktail recipes, why not make your own? A bottle of vodka infused with your own creative blends of local fruit and organic spices also makes a great gift for those that imbibe.
This easy to follow tutorial from Wired How-To will show you how to transform plain old vodka into a handcrafted masterpiece in a few easy steps.
All you’ll need is some vodka, something to infused flavor, some unique jars or bottles, and a creative mind! Here’s more on how to find/choose your ingredients:
- Vodka – Vodka is easily the most important (and expensive) part of the process. Although practically any brand will do in a pinch, close attention should be paid to its ingredients and distillation methods. In short, the fewer high quality sources of starch (wheat, potato, or even soy), and the more distillation and filtration, the better. A quick and dirty test: If it smells like rubbing alcohol and burns going down, spend the extra ducats to upgrade. It doesn’t matter what kind of flavor you infuse if the base vodka tastes like death.
- Flavor – In terms of flavor, it’s an open playing field. Berries, melons, vegetables, and even spices can be infused to add some kick. However, just like gourmet cooking, the fresher the ingredients the more vibrant the flavor. Frozen or jarred fruits and vegetables should be avoided at all costs. At a loss for which flavor to shoot for? Some common choices include: Watermelon, lemon, apple, strawberry, peach, mango, cucumber, chili, mint, ginger, garlic, and lavender. If you want to get really saucy, try mixing a few.
- Infusion Jar – Almost any glass jar will work, if short on time or materials. If you can track down a bona fide infusion jar, even better. They’re easy to spot as most have a spigot at the bottom and a secure lid for the top. In a worst case scenario, you can always go to local retailer (Target, Wal-Mart, etc.) and pick up a cheap sun tea jar. Just make sure that whatever you bring home is clear, can hold up to 750ml, and has a tight lid.
Image: Buddha’s Hand Infused Vodka
Credit: Flickr – geminica