Pumpkin Spiced Russian

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Cocktail History

The Pumpkin Spiced Russian is an autumn cocktail that was created by Emma Stokes and was first published in her book Have Yourself a Merry Little Cocktail. It’s a seasonal variation of the White Russian that is made with vodka, coffee liqueur, and milk, all of which are taken up a notch by adding pumpkin spice syrup and a caramel sauce rim.

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Vodka: This is a spirit made with grains, vegetables or fruits, and alcohol. We used Russian Standard Gold Vodka because it’s smooth, easy to sip, and fairly inexpensive without compromising the quality. For a mocktail version of this drink, try STRYKK Not V*dka in place of the vodka.

Coffee Liqueur: This is a liqueur made with coffee, spices, sugar, and alcohol. We used Mr. Black Spirits Cold Brew Coffee Liqueur because it has a bold coffee flavor with very little sweetness. For a mocktail version of this drink, try Lyre’s Coffee Original Non-Alcoholic Spirit in place of the coffee liqueur.

Milk: This is a liquid rich in calcium and protein that is produced by mammals. We used Prairie Farm Vitamin D Whole Milk. For a dairy-free version of this drink, try oat milk in place of the milk.

Caramel Sauce: This is a sweetener made with sugar, salt, vanilla, butter, and cream. We used Torani Puremade Caramel Sauce because it’s flavorful but has a thinner texture.

Pumpkin Spice Syrup: This is a sweetener made with pumpkin purée, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla extract, brown sugar, white sugar, and water. We made ours at home using Alex’s sous vide recipe.

Pumpkin Pie Spice: This is a spice blend made with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. We used Simply Organic Pumpkin Pie Spice.

Cinnamon Stick: This is a dried spice that has been rolled into a stick. We used cinnamon sticks from the bulk section at our local grocery store.

Bartending Tools

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following bar tools:

Jigger: This is used to measure and pour ingredients. We used the Japanese jigger from the A Bar Above 14-Piece Silver Bar Set.

Bar Spoon: This is used to stir ingredients. We used the Barfly Stainless Steel Teardrop Bar Spoon.

Tasting Notes

The Pumpkin Spiced Russian features a mixture of pumpkin spice and coffee aromas, begins with an immediate hit of pumpkin and caramel from the rim blended with the sweetened flavors of coffee and pumpkin in the mouth, and goes down with a lasting coffee note accented by caramel and spices.

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: We aren’t kidding when we say this one is rich! Neither of us is typically keen on the type of drink with fancy rims and candy-sweet ingredients, but we’d be lying if we said we didn’t finish ours pretty quickly. Messy rim and all, it’s worth making one or two at your holiday get-togethers this year.

Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

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Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

Take Our Quiz →

Alex’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐
“I’m not huge on sweet, indulgent cocktails like this with extravagant, messy rims and sweet flavor, but this was a pretty tasty. Alhough slightly kitschy and certainly sugary, I could see anybody enjoying this in place of dessert. One difference between a standard White Russian and this is that we ended up using skim milk, which is what we keep in the fridge. That kept it a bit lighter than cream would have, and that helped out a bit since the typical recipe doesn’t call for a syrup like this does. Also, the caramel and pumpkin spice rim was messy, but it did add a lot of decadent flavor to the drink. I definitely wouldn’t have more than one if not just for calories alone, but it’s delicious as long as you’re on a cheat day.”

Kendall’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“One word—yum! Although a little heavy on the coffee flavor for my taste, this drink is still a fabulous (and very decadent) recipe that I would absolutely request again. Normally I’m not big on pumpkin spice, but it is really tasty when paired with the caramel sauce rim. Try this instead of pumpkin pie for the perfect autumn indulgence!”

Recipe

This cocktail recipe was adapted from Have Yourself a Merry Little Cocktail: 80 Cheerful Tipples to Warm Up Winter by Emma Stokes.

Have Yourself a Merry Little Cocktail: 80 Cheerful Tipples to Warm up Winter
Have Yourself a Merry Little Cocktail: 80 Cheerful Tipples to Warm up Winter
Hardcover Book; Stokes, Emma (Author); English (Publication Language); 144 Pages – 12/01/2020 (Publication Date) – Pop Press (Publisher)
$19.95 Amazon Prime

AuthorHave Yourself a Merry Little Cocktail

Yields1 ServingPrep Time5 mins

Ingredients
 2 oz Vodka
 1 oz Coffee Liqueur
 ¾ oz Milk
 ¾ oz Caramel Sauce
 1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
 1 Cinnamon Stick

Method
1

Pour pumpkin pie spice on a plate, rim a lowball glass with ¼ oz caramel sauce, and dip glass in pumpkin spice until coated.

2

Add vodka, coffee liqueur, pumpkin spice syrup, ½ oz caramel sauce, and cracked ice to glass.

3

Stir for 10-15 seconds.

4

Slowly top with milk.

5

Garnish with cinnamon stick.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 2 oz Vodka
 1 oz Coffee Liqueur
 ¾ oz Milk
 ¾ oz Caramel Sauce
 1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
 1 Cinnamon Stick

Directions

Method
1

Pour pumpkin pie spice on a plate, rim a lowball glass with ¼ oz caramel sauce, and dip glass in pumpkin spice until coated.

2

Add vodka, coffee liqueur, pumpkin spice syrup, ½ oz caramel sauce, and cracked ice to glass.

3

Stir for 10-15 seconds.

4

Slowly top with milk.

5

Garnish with cinnamon stick.

Pumpkin Spiced Russian

Make It a Mocktail: Use STRYKK Not V*dka in place of the vodka and Lyre’s Coffee Original Non-Alcoholic Spirit in place of the coffee liqueur to try a booze-free version of this drink.

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More Pumpkin Cocktails

If you like this pumpkin-flavored cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

Smashed Pumpkin Cocktail Recipe

Smashed Pumpkin: A bourbon cocktail made with lemon juice, pumpkin spice syrup, orange bitters, and an egg white

Pumpkin Cider Cocktail Recipe

Pumpkin Cider: An apply brandy and dark rum cocktail made with apple cider, pumpkin cubes, butter, sugar, whole cloves, star anise, cinnamon sticks, and grated nutmeg

Pumpkin Spiced Espresso Martini Cocktail Recipe

Pumpkin Spiced Espresso Martini: A vanilla vodka cocktail made with espresso, coffee liqueur, pumpkin spice syrup, and grated nutmeg

Thanksgiving Nog Cocktail Recipe

Thanksgiving Nog: A dark rum cocktail made with water, heavy cream, pumpkin purée, brown sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, ground cinnamon, ground cloves, ground allspice, ground nutmeg, ground mace, whipped cream, and a cinnamon stick

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