I’m not one to pass up a good libation, so Asian Caucasian is ringing in the New Year with this mildly spicy, Thai-inspired cocktail! Damien is not a drinker, so guess who was “forced” to do the taste-testing on this one? You got it! Really tough assignment! This spritzy muddled vodka drink is SO good — it has a touch of sweetness from the simple syrup, flavorings from the lemongrass, mint, and basil, and a touch of heat from the chili peppers. Wow! Wow! Wow! Could be my new go-to cocktail!
- 1 piece lemongrass, tough outer skin removed
- 4-5 Thai basil leaves or regular basil (more for garnishing)
- 4-5 sprigs mint leaves (more for garnishing)
- 2 ounces vodka
- ¾ ounce *simple syrup
- 8 ounces club soda
- Juice from ½ lime
- 3-4 cucumber slices
- 4 thin slices jalapeño peppers
- 2-3 thin slices red Thai chili peppers (seeded)
- In a martini shaker, muddle the first three ingredients. Add the vodka, simple syrup, and club soda to the shaker and lightly shake to combine.
- Using a strainer, pour the mixture into a cocktail glass and squeeze in the lime juice, stir well. (Discard the ingredients from the shaker.) Garnish the drink with cucumbers, jalapeño peppers, red Thai chili peppers, basil, and mint.
Pour equal parts water and sugar in a small saucepan. Heat the ingredients until dissolved. Remove from heat and cool. Keep in the refrigerator until ready to use.