I’m going for my favorite very simple cocktail, a Vanilla Stoli and Coke, and giving it a twist to make it a cherry vanilla vodka cola cocktail. Before we get into why this is one of my favorite drinks, let’s start with why I’m twisting it up. First off, there’s a high probability we may be moving soon, though I’m not ready to share with the world where or why. Tune in next week to find out more. So, that said, I’ve been trying to work on using up what we have in our fridge and pantry. I have some gorgeous naturally preserved cherries that I bought back when I was working on the recipe for the Almond Brownie Martini. In the interest of using up at least some of these before it’s time to do a final fridge clean up, I thought it might be fun to do a riff on a Vanilla Stoli and Coke with a cherry flare to make a cherry vanilla vodka cola cocktail. However, rather than using Coke, I thought I’d go with my favorite natural brand of soda – Blue Sky and integrate their Cola into my drink. It’s a little hazardous for me to be drinking this after 5 p.m. in the first place, as any caffeine after about 3 p.m. can really wreck my ability to go to sleep at a reasonable time. As such, this is a weekend only drink.
So – why Vanilla Stoli and Coke or Cola? Cocktails, wine and coffee were three things that I just didn’t have much exposure to until I was a young adult. I suppose that’s pretty reasonable, but I was also the only student in my senior class who hadn’t ever been drunk in high school – or at least, I was the only one who was willing to admit I was that kind of a home body in front of my peers. High school and I did not mix well. But I digress. When I was finally old enough to pursue any and all of those vices on my own, I had no idea what I liked. As a result, I kind of followed along or took a best guess about what might sound good. It’s how I ended up drinking mochas forever, when in reality, I actually prefer Americanos. I ended up in a rut of cheap white zinfandel and really sweet Rieslings before I realized that I really prefer deep dark red wines, like Shiraz and Tempranillo. The first time I had a cocktail, it was a whiskey sour, because that’s what my ex drank. As it turns out, I really like whiskey sours, as long as the sour mix is all natural (in other words, from a lemon and some sugar – not from a scary looking bottle that probably doesn’t include anything natural or real). At some point or another, I got tired of whiskey sours and went out on a limb for a Vanilla Stoli and Coke (I’m sure someone recommended it to me). I really enjoyed it and stayed with it forever. And by forever, I mean through most of my twenties until I went to the Marshall Islands and met a friend who introduced me to gin and tonics. At that point, I switched my allegiance and drank G&Ts for two years. I just might be a creature of habit.
Fortunately, for me (and for my blog readers, too), I’ve branched out a bit since. There’s only so much you can do with a G&T for a happy hour post, and I’m pretty sure I’ve exhausted most of the possibilities already.
A cherry vanilla vodka cola cocktail would be a great addition to a summer barbecue. It’s a fizzy and slightly sweet drink and perfect for lounging on the deck as well. I know that’s what I’ll be doing this weekend (provided the sun decides to peek out behind all the clouds). Cheers!
- 2 ounces Vanilla Stoli Vodka
- ½ ounce cherry syrup from maraschino cherries or similar
- Cola or Coke to top
- Cherries to garnish
- Combine the vodka and cherry syrup in a glass. Add ice. Top off with cola or coke. Garnish with cherries and enjoy! Serves 1