Homemade Liqueurs: Let's make some!

My recent business trip to the Caucasus netted me a few liters of darn cheap but really very smooth vodka (this to compensate for the fact that I didn’t find any Caviar that could even nearly motivate the price).

So, now with more clear booze in my cabinet than I could ever hope to consume on its own, I thought I’d try my hand at liqueurs. While making akvavit is fun and all (and being a Swede I have had enough experience making the stuff), I’d rather produce something I can make use of in cocktail production. I’ve already set a coffee liqueur brewing (planning on filtering it in a couple of weeks), but I’d love to get more recipes.

So Dope, gimme your best shot(s)!

Outrageously simple, but good:

Infused pineapple. (Chuck some pineapple in booze for a few days. Eat. Drink booze. Add booze to anything that calls for pineapple juice.)

Fill a large mason jar ~1/3 full with washed, whole, pit-in dark plums. Add a spoon or two of sugar. Fill to the top with vodka. Cover and place in back of cupboard til Christmas. Both the plums and the vodka will be very tasty indeed.

This calls for lemoncello.

Please find some way of making the apricot brandy? apricot liqueur? that a Dutch colleague of mine made a few years ago using, I think, fresh apricots. Then please find some way of sending me some of it.

I don’t have the recipe and don’t remember any details about the distilling or infusing or whatever process, nor do I have contact information for said colleague to find out any of that information. But I do remember that it was absolutely STUNNINGLY good, if that helps any.

Thanks in advance! :wink: Good luck with your distillery.

Cucumber Vodka.
drink it on the rocks on a hot day when you have no plans

Seconded. Lemon and lime peels, simple syrup, and a freezer. I’ve never done cucumber vodka but I’ve heard it recommended quite a bit.

My most requested recipe is for Bailey’s, but that requires cheap Irish whisky, like Jameson’s.

For vodka, try a Cranberry liqueur. In a large, food grade plastic bucket, mash up 5 pounds of frozen cranberries. Add 3 cups white sugar and mash some more. Pour in 1/2 gallon vodka and stir. Let set 24 hours. Add 1.5 gallons vodka and let set, covered, for 48 hours. Strain through cheesecloth to remove the fruit. Taste and adjust sweetness to your liking. Bottle.

How about a decent chocolate vodka? Most of commercial varieties are crap.

Martha Sewart has some good recipes in the back of The Hors D’ouvres Handbook. I can’t find the recipe for the strawberry liqueur, but from memory it was similar to this:

apple pie moonshine

My raspberries have just started coming in. Last year I tried making some liqueur by reducing some frozen raspberries to a thick paste (for a more intense flavor) and adding cheap vodka and sweetener. It was decent.

This year I’m too lazy to cook them down. Each night when I pick berries, I just eat the most perfect ones fresh, and throw the slightly irregular ones into a bottle with good white rum in it. It especially seems like the ideal use for the little overripe berries, kinda like spatlese grapes. I’ll test it in a few weeks.

Not a bad idea. There are quite some possibilities there. I’m thinking relatively coarse and not so sweet, to be used as a bitter element in cocktails.

This I like. One bottle of lemoncello coming up!

I found myself with 45 pounds of sour cherries recently. After making approximately 3.6 tons of jam I still had cherries left over so I filled a quart jar 3/4 full of cherries, added 1.5 cups of sugar (more or less) and filled it with vodka. After sitting for a week it’s quite tasty, we’ll see after a couple of months. I don’t feel like I have a good handle on the correct amount of sugar for the best taste but I doubt I can go too far wrong.

If you want a non-sweet chocolate vodka (which sounds incredible, I’ll be by in six months or so!), try chocolate nibs.

(I might be by sooner…)

Do you like honey? If so, Bärenfang/Bärenjäger is an option. Tasty stuff.

I haven’t tried making it myself yet, but here’s a recipe I found:


• 8 cloves
• 1/2 vanilla bean
• 1 liter vodka
• 350 grams honey


  1. Chop the cloves and split the vanilla bean, put them in a spice bag, and add them to the vodka. (Alternatively, you can just dump them in, and they will steep faster, but you’ll have to strain the vodka.)
  2. Let it steep for about 24 hours before removing the spices.
  3. Stir the vodka vigorously while pouring the honey in a thin stream. Blend them completely.
  4. Store the finished liqueur in a cool, dark place.

I find it is best served at or near room temperature; it loses too much aroma when chilled.

My recipe for CherryBim uses a gallon jar, but is similar:

Layer in about an inch of cherries. Toss in 5 sugar cubes and a couple of cloves. Repeat until the jar is packed full. Full with cheapass bourbon. Let age undisturbed for a month or two. Enjoy.

Okay, okay…

I’ll stop by Silenus and pick up some sour cherry hootch, and then pop in on Czarcasm when the chocolate brew is finished steeping.

We’ll call it the Chocolate-Covered Cherry IED, because after drinking it, you’ll be BOMBED.

You’re welcome. We’ll make cocktails.