Though often criticized by mixologists for its lack of flavor, vodka’s neutral taste makes it a true chameleon of spirits — its versatility playing well in drinks for every season. So although the summer of 2021 saw a comeback for the Cosmopolitan, don’t expect to put that bottle of Grey Goose in storage as temps begin to drop.
From classic Espresso Martinis and White Russians, to seasonal riffs on old favorites, vodka cocktails can be the perfect beverages to help drinks lovers ring in the end of humid days. Looking for inspiration? Read on for 10 of the best vodka cocktails to make this fall.
Drink your dessert this fall with a decadent, coffee-scented Mudslide. A take on the White Russian, the Mudslide adds in Baileys Irish Cream for added sweetness and a smooth, creamy finish. Serve on the rocks or frozen to satisfy your sweet tooth.
Let’s be honest, the Espresso Martini needs no season or occasion, but we’ll happily drink it as the leaves start to change. Created in 1983 by London bartender Dick Bradsell, this cocktail is made with vodka, coffee liqueur, fresh espresso, and simple syrup. Top with coffee beans for added presentation (and a caffeine boost).
For a cocktail to sip fireside, try this take on the Moscow Mule. To make it, combine vodka with marshmallow and ginger syrup, and top with soda water. A squeeze of lime adds the citrusy tang we love in Mules, while a toasted marshmallow garnish adds a touch of sweetness and nostalgia.
Created by The Public House’s Matt Labarge, the Dream Potion No. 9 is Yoo-hoo made for adults. Cold brew vodka is combined with honey syrup and half and half, and shaken to perfection for a frothy texture. Top it off with orange bitters for added brightness and fall feels.
For those not ready to put down their summertime Cosmos, the Twisted Holiday Cosmo will come in handy. Made with vodka, cranberry juice, lime, and citrus spice syrup, this drink is the perfect Thanksgiving aperitif, with aromas of cinnamon, cloves, and zesty citrus that evoke fall.
Inspired by a trip to Australia, this cocktail combines two of the country’s culinary staples: Tim Tam cookies and Espresso Martinis. To make it, shake together vodka, espresso, Tim Tams, and coffee liqueur, and fine strain into a coupe glass. The result is a chocolaty treat sure to impress guests from Down Under and beyond.
A holiday staple, pomegranate steals the show in this sessionable drink. Combined with vodka, lemon juice, agave, and rose water, the richness of the fruit is balanced by a delicate florality. Top with a rose petal for a pink drink ideal for toasting the end of rosé season.
A festive take on a Screwdriver, this variation adds clove simple syrup to the mix. The aromas of baking spices, combined with the brightness of fresh orange juice, make this a drink perfect for holiday brunches. Top with a slice of orange and cloves, and sip with everything from Thanksgiving sandwiches to cheesy omelets.
If crisp weather brings out your cravings for all things rich and luscious, the White Russian is a sure fall staple. The three-ingredient drink is made with vodka, coffee liqueur, and cream, and can be paired with dessert or sipped on its own at movie nights (“The Big Lebowski,” anyone?).
An infusion of cranberry instantly adds a seasonal touch to the classic Moscow Mule. In addition to vodka, lime, and ginger beer, cranberry simple syrup is added to this recipe for a touch of nuance. Add a festive presentation, including a copper mug and whole cranberry garnishes, and you have a drink made for serving at holiday parties.