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Drink Mon Feb 16 2009

Cinnamon Infuses Vodka with Cinnamon

36 hours of steeping

I love cinnamon. No really. I try to find interesting things to do with it. I'm totally biased, I know. But I love it. So when reading recently about different infused vodkas I got to thinking about the best way to infuse vodka with cinnamon. Using powder seemed like it would create an awful texture in the final drink, but I worried that the sticks wouldn't release enough flavor.

I had no reason to worry. Vodka, as I learned, is incredibly easy to infuse. All I did was take this inexpensive bottle of vodka, throw in a handful of cinnamon sticks (of course I got really good ones from The Spice House) and I let it sit on a counter for a couple of weeks. I think it only needed a week, but I wanted to make sure I had enough time to redo it if necessary. But I didn't need to.

Once it was infused I set about trying cool ways to use it. It tastes fantastic with Coke (which makes me think homemade vanilla or cherry vodka may be in my future as well), superb with spicy ginger beer, great with ginger ale and a dash of grenadine or bitters. It also matched well with chocolate liqueur (and a splash of milk), Irish cream, hot cocoa (or coffee if you're into it), and might even be tasty drizzled over a bowl of vanilla ice cream. I feel like so much more could have been done with it if I'd really gotten creative with the mixing of spirits. I think I'll be doing it again and experimenting further.

 
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adam / February 16, 2009 11:00 PM

I can vouch for that cinnamon-infused vodka. It was spicy but not overpowering, and perfect for winter.

What about trying coriander or horseradish, like they do at Russian Tea Time? Both seriously good, although I bet the horseradish will need filtering, even if you're using the straight root. I volunteer for taste testing.

art / February 17, 2009 8:53 AM

two ingredients and many possibilities. that color is striking.

Vidiot / February 17, 2009 3:53 PM

Cinnamon syrup is also easy-peasy and quite good.

AEM / February 17, 2009 4:47 PM

if you want your mind to get blown, i suggest trying a pomegranate / cinnamon infusion mix, for reals.

and then after that try basil-infused vodka.

and then if you are still standing, and need some more advice on things to put in your liquor, feel free to call. ha ha ha ha ha.

Vidas / February 17, 2009 7:47 PM

I've made various infused vodkas and its certainly easy to do.Horseradish vodka is a favorite. Some recipes call for grating the horseradish root but I get excellent results by cutting 4 3 inch by 1/4 inch "sticks" of root and simply dropping them in the bottle for a week. Pour vodka out into a clean mason jar, flush out the root with water and pour the vodka back in the bottle.

Certainly flavors, particularly strong ones such as horseradish infuse pretty quickly. Stone fruits such as cherry or peach take alot longer - up to a month to infuse.

My favorite for cocktails is lime zest and ginger root infused vodka.

Cinnamon / February 18, 2009 3:19 PM

Great suggestions everyone! Lime zest and ginger sound perfect for summer. Pomegranate juice is purchased for finishing up what I already have. And basil infused vodka seems perfect when muddled with fresh strawberries. Horseradish sounds perfect for bloody marys. So many options to try.

Teresita / May 20, 2009 3:13 PM

I didn't know you could infuse spices just as spices! My Filipino friend just recently introduced me to infused fruit. That made sense. And adding spices to it makes sense. But just infused spice? I have to try it!

zhenya / March 19, 2010 8:03 PM

if you like horseraidsh vodka try Referent horseradish vodka available at Binnys http://www.binnys.com/spirits/search/?advs=2&astxt=referent

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

The State of Food Writing

By Brandy Gonsoulin

In 2009, food blogging, social media and Yelp were gaining popularity, and America's revered gastronomic magazine Gourmet shuttered after 68 years in business. Former Cook's Illustrated editor-in-chief Chris Kimball followed with an editorial, stating that "The shuttering of Gourmet reminds...
Read this feature »

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Drive-Thru is the food and drink section of Gapers Block, covering the city's vibrant dining, drinking and cooking scene. More...
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