Rosemary Infused Vodka

This summer, Eric took it upon himself to manage our “urban garden”, three large planters that sat in front of our apartment building (there was no room, or sunlight, in the back).  It was a fun activity of both of us.  It gave him a project for him to work on and I was given access to fresh, homegrown ingredients whenever I wanted them.
And, for the first few months, it was a huge success.
But then, after a weekend on the Cape, we came home to find the leaves on the tomato plants shriveled up.  The only explanation we could come up with was that they had gotten blight.
And that was the end of our flourishing garden.
Except for one thing: the herbs, which included basil, parsley, rosemary, thyme, oregano, sage, and lavender, were still hanging to

  
The herbs are still sitting outside in the pots and we are doing our best to find unique ways to use them.  Some have made their way into a variety of meals, but others have gone into baked good or have been bottled with olive oil.
But then I thought, wouldn’t it be fun to infuse some alcohol too?  As much as we enjoy wine, Eric and I are cocktail people.  With beer and wine, you are limited on what you can do with them to alter their flavor.  Certainly pairing them with food can effect how they taste. What’s so enjoyable about making cocktails, however, are the endless possibilities for what can be included. 

Rosemary lends itself well to both savory and sweet pairings, which is what lead me to make a batch of rosemary infused vodka.  Mix that with some lemon juice and a splash of tonic or use it to make a batch of Bloody Marys the next time you host brunch.

I wanted to add that this was my gift for one lucky attendee (it turned out to be the wonderful writer/photographer of Lemons and Anchovies) of the 2nd Annual FoodBuzz Blogger Festival, which was held this past weekend in San Francisco.  She will be posting a cocktail containing the rosemary vodka on her site in the next week or so, but, in the meantime, I highly suggest taking a look at her lovely blog.

Rosemary Infused Vodka

Ingredients

3 sprigs of organic rosemary, 5-6 inches in length
Vodka

Directions
In a large jar or jug, add the rosemary.  Pour in the vodka, cover, and let sit for 3-5 days.  After the first day, try the vodka.  Within a few days, it will take on the flavor of the rosemary.
Place a colander over a metal bowl and layer that with cheesecloth.  Pour the vodka over the cheesecloth, which will separate the rosemary from the liquid.  
Pour the vodka back into the container and cover.


Rosemary Vodka and Tonic

Ingredients
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 oz rosemary vodka (or more, if you like it stronger)
3-5 oz tonic (or more, if you put in too much vodka)
1 rosemary sprig, for garnish (optional)

Directions
Pour vodka and lemon juice over ice, top off with tonic.  Garnish with rosemary sprig.

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ElianaNovember 8, 2010 - 4:52 am

I;m not much of a drinker but this vodka sounds like something that needs to be a part of my life.

Angie's RecipesNovember 8, 2010 - 4:57 am

I just read a post about Pomegranate Vodka, and now your rosemary infused vodka..wow…I love the idea of using herbs in vodka. Sounds really special and great!

Jo RomeroNovember 8, 2010 - 6:26 am

This sounds lovely – and it gives me a great idea for home-made Christmas presents this year! Thanks for sharing.

Daydreamer DessertsNovember 8, 2010 - 6:30 am

Sounds lovely, but can I add a touch of mint to mine? ;)

The Small Boston KitchenNovember 8, 2010 - 10:55 am

This is just awesome…and sounds pretty easy to do! I think someone mentioned the idea of Christmas presents for these? I bet the rosemary vodka would make a mean vodka sauce too!

JoanneNovember 8, 2010 - 11:40 am

I think it's way more valuable to have herbs than tomatoes anyway. I find myself going through herbs like it's nobody's business because they just don't keep very well once you've brought them home from the store. This vodka sounds fantastic…there are definitely a myriad of uses for it. Love the Bloody Mary idea…favorite drink ever.

Mardi @eatlivetravelwriteNovember 8, 2010 - 11:55 am

How funny that you should post this – we were standing looking at all our shrivelled plants outside yesterday – except the rosemary which just keeps on keeping on and wondering what to do with it. What a great idea. I also love Josie's idea of a touch on mint.

Chef DennisNovember 8, 2010 - 1:42 pm

Hi Brian
Welcome back!! I'm sure Amanda will amke good use of that wonderful vodka!
It was so nice meeting you!
Cheers my friend!
Dennis

EmilyNovember 8, 2010 - 1:43 pm

I love infusing alcohol at home. I've never tried doing it with herbs so this is a great recipe to have!

JacquelineCNovember 8, 2010 - 3:28 pm

Just a note: be sure when infusing in alcohol, to use only organic herbs! Anything sprayed on commercially grown herbs will be present in your vodka later…

Fun and Fearless in BeantownNovember 8, 2010 - 3:30 pm

I wonder what it says about me that I wouldn't mind a taste of a rosemary vodka cocktail right now…This looks wonderful and I bet the fresh herbs taste lovely in your dishes too!

A Thought For FoodNovember 8, 2010 - 3:31 pm

A great comment, Jacqueline! That is very important. I'm going to edit the recipe right now.

JeanNovember 8, 2010 - 4:03 pm

Yes! I'm the proud owner of Brian's wonderful creation. I've already got a cocktail in mind and I'll be posting later this week. Thanks so much, Brian–it was so nice to finally meet you. :-)

Bianca @ Confessions of a ChocoholicNovember 8, 2010 - 8:20 pm

You had me at vodka :) I've never had rosemary infused vodka but it sounds fantastic!

MonetNovember 9, 2010 - 3:21 am

I can only imagine what would happen with our plants. Ryan and I are attempting to start a garden right now (but we haven't had the best track record with growing vegetation…wish us luck!) This sounds AMAZING. You are one creative culinary genius! Much love!

Andrew FrishmanNovember 9, 2010 - 5:46 am

Mmnn!. . . I LOVES me some vodka, especially when it has been done infused.

Es importante estar seguro, si uno ha de ser infundida en otro, que la identidad original no se pierde ni subsumidos, pero comprometidos y complementarias.

A Feast for the EyesNovember 9, 2010 - 5:55 am

Hey Brian! That vodka looks very familiar. I believe that was the gift you brought to Table 9.
It was nice to meet you at the Foodbuzz Festival in San Francisco! Debby

katNovember 9, 2010 - 2:07 pm

That sounds so tasty! I would love it. Strangely my husband can't taste rosemary.

Anna JohnstonNovember 9, 2010 - 2:22 pm

Now that's an interesting twist…., Rosemary infused Vodka…, nice one :)

The CilantropistNovember 9, 2010 - 4:26 pm

I am jealous of Jean that she got some of this and I didn't, Boo. Maybe you can make me a drink with your leftovers (if there are any!) and send it my way? :)

Stair ClimbingNovember 9, 2010 - 7:00 pm

And how do you serve this rosemary vodka?

baking.serendipityNovember 10, 2010 - 2:37 am

What a great use for herbs!

Island VittlesNovember 10, 2010 - 3:20 am

great last photo! I love infusing booze…it`s easy and people love it as gifts! Theresa

Cake DuchessNovember 11, 2010 - 2:26 am

I bet that tasted lovely. I adore the smell and flavor of rosemary:)

My Man's BellyNovember 11, 2010 - 5:08 pm

I have rosemary infused gin on my counter at the moment and love it. I really like your suggestion of the rosemary vodka with lemon and tonic – so refreshing!

SeanNovember 12, 2010 - 1:31 am

I'm the founder/moderator for Punk Domestics (www.punkdomestics.com), a community site for those of use obsessed with, er, interested in DIY food. It's sort of like Tastespotting, but specific to the niche. I'd love for you to submit this to the site. Good stuff! (P.S. I just taught a class on infusions and liqueurs, so it's a topic dear to my heart.)

DaisyNovember 12, 2010 - 6:19 pm

this is awesome! as a vodka lover, those drinks sound like heaven. my boyfriend hates rosemary (weird, I know!) so this is the perfect way to keep him away from my stash!!

JackieNovember 15, 2010 - 10:43 am

Okay, seriously, where have I been and why have I missed all of these posts?! It's probably over that period where I took an internet hiatus to sort out my life…

My birthday's in February. Let's toast with some of this!

Jax x

annaNovember 15, 2010 - 7:31 pm

This sounds AMAZING. I love love love rosemary!

RachelNovember 20, 2010 - 10:14 pm

Ooo! Good idea on the rosemary. We just learned that you can use a whipped cream whipper to instantly infuse liquid (liquor) and we want to try making some infused cocktails soon!

AnonymousDecember 10, 2010 - 11:27 pm

This is a great rosemary vodka drink.. I bet the rosemary infused vodka would be marvelous in this!

ROSEMARY COCKTAIL
1 cup fresh lemon juice
1 cup sugar
2 (8-inch) rosemary sprigs
1/2 cup vodka
Chilled club soda or seltzer
Garnish: 8 (3-inch) rosemary sprigs

Combine lemon juice, sugar, and rosemary in a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring until sugar has dissolved, then reduce heat and simmer 2 minutes. Cool thoroughly and discard the rosemary sprigs used in this mixture.

Put a few ice cubes in the bottom of your glasses. Combine equal parts syrup mixture and vodka (several tablespoons to 1 shot of each depending on the size of your glasses) and top off with club soda.

[...] Rosemary-Cucumber Lemonade Stir together juice from 3 lemons and 1 teaspoon honey. Add 1 shot rosemary-infused vodka and ¾ cup seltzer. Garnish with a cucumber spear and lemon [...]

Rosemary Infused VodkaMay 1, 2012 - 6:55 am

If you would like to try what I feel is the very best look for ENLIGHTENED GRAIN SPIRITS

EG INSPIRATION

THE INSPIRATION FOR THE INFUSION OF LAVENDER AND ROSEMARY INTO VODKA CAME FROM A LIFE AS A BARTENDER AND MY PASSION FOR THE CULINARY ARTS.

ASPIRING TO CAPTURE THE AROMATICS OF THE HERBS DE PROVENCE SO PROMINENT IN FRENCH CUISINE IN THIS FIRST INFUSION, THE SOFT YET UNMISTAKABLY FLORAL NOTES OF LAVENDER REFRESH THE PALATE AS THE POWERFUL ELEGANCE OF THE SAVORY OILS OF ROSEMARY BRING AN ENJOYABLE WARMTH TO THE INFUSION NOT COMMONLY FOUND IN CLEAR SPIRITS.

IT IS MY HOPE THAT YOU TAKE AS MUCH JOY IN DRINKING THIS AND THE YET RELEASED ONE OF A KIND SPIRITS AS I DID IN THEIR CREATION.
All The Best,
EG

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