Finlandia Announces Vodka Cup US Finalists

December 19, 2011 — Finlandia Vodka Cup US Finalists

The Finlandia Vodka Cup is an annual cocktail competition that brings mixologists from across the globe for a chance to win bragging rights. Oh, and $25,000. That too. This year, 14 of the 20 people vying for finalist positions came from US mixologists. And we’ve got their names and recipes. Thanks goes to Finlandia for the info and photos. (Photos of the cocktails appear below the recipes)

BARTENDER: Jay Hudson, Denver, Co.

RECIPE:  Col. Pepper’s Lonely Mango

  • 1.5 oz Finlandia Mango
  • 3/4 oz Southern Comfort Fiery Pepper
  • 3 dash Tabasco Sauce
  • 2 oz Mango Puree
  • 2 oz Club Soda

Pour 1 1/4 oz of Finlandia Mango, 3/4 oz of Southern Comfort Fiery Pepper into a mixing glass with ice. Add 3 dashes of Tabasco Sauce, and 2 oz of Mango Puree. Shake to Mix. Strain into glass over ice. Garnish with a jalapeno.

BARTENDER: Ken Kodys, Denver, Co.

RECIPE:  Fins of Faith

  • 1.25 oz Finlandia Vodka
  • .25 oz Yellow Chartreuse
  • 2.5 oz Coconut Water
  • .5 oz Demerara Syrup (2-1)
  • 1 oz Fresh Squeezed Lime Juice
  • 2 dash Peychauds Bitters
  • 4 Peppadew Peppers
  • 5-8 Baby Arugula Leaves

Muddle 4 Baby Arugula Leaves and 3 Peppadew at the bottom of a mixing glass. Add Demerara, Finlandia, Chartreuse, Lime, Coconut water and Peychauds bitters. Add 3 cubes block ice and shake for 10 seconds Fill Finlandia highball with block ice and double fine strain contents to remove all solids. Garnish with Baby Arugula and Pickled Peppadew.

BARTENDER: Jake Bliven, Eugene, OR

RECIPE:  Harvest Moon

  • 1.5 oz Finlandia vodka
  • 1/2 oz Dry vermouth
  • 3/4 oz lemon juice
  • 1/2 oz Spiced mead reduction (2:1 mead/ sugar simmered with 2 cloves, pinch of fresh ginger, cinnamon stick, 2 allspice berries and a star anise)
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
  • 1 dash Bar code baked apple bitters
  • 1.5 oz dry Granny Smith fermented apple cider (I used Woodchuck cider from Vermont)
  • 3 figs baked on a low setting with crushed pecans

Prepare figs and allow them to cool. Once cool, muddle three baked figs with Finlandia vodka. Add dry vermouth, lemon juice, spiced mead reduction, and bitters. Add ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a high ball glass filled with ice cubes. Top with Fermented apple cider, stir to mix in and garnish with a half sliced fig, lemon slice, “fanned” granny smith apple slice.


 BARTENDER: Gary Gruber, Prospect, Ky.

RECIPE:  Flor de Jamaica Cup

  • 1.75 oz Finlandia Grapefruit Vodka
  • 0.5 oz Pama Liqueur
  • 0.5 oz Monin Hibiscus Syrup
  • 0.5 oz Pom Juice
  • 1 Ruby red Grapefruit slice (No rind)
  • 6 Basil leaves

Build in shaker – Muddle Slice of ruby red grapefruit with (5) Basil leaves. Add Ice and remaining ingredients. Shake and double strain over glass filled with ice. Garnish with a freshly smacked basil leaf and red grapefruit zest.

BARTENDER: Tad Carducci, Hackettstown, NJ

RECIPE:  The Screaming Greenie

  • 2 oz Finlandia Vodka
  • 1/2 oz French Absinthe
  • 1/2 oz Fresh lemon juice
  • 1.75 oz Simple syrup
  • 8 fresh Italian basil leaves
  • 8 oz ice

Add all ingredients to the cup of a high-powered blender. Add one cup of ice and blend on high for 20 seconds Pour into highball or Collins glass. Lightly smack basil leaf to release aroma and garnish with basil leaf and lemon wheel.

BARTENDER: Bridget Cheslock, San Diego, CA

RECIPE:  Elderflower Creamsicle

  • 1.5 oz Finlandia Tangerine Vodka
  • 3 drops St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur
  • 2 oz Freshly Squeezed Clementine Juice
  • 3 oz Polar Vanilla Sparkling Water
  • 1 dash Angostura Bitters

Add ice to a shaker. Pour Finlandia Vodka, St. Germain and Clemetine Juice into shaker. Cover and shake for 8 seconds.  Pour shaker ingredients into a highball glass with ice. Pour Polar Vanilla Sparkling Water into highball glass. Add a dash of Angostura Bitters. Finish with a garnish of a Clementine twist.

BARTENDER: Raul Faria, Las Vegas, NV

RECIPE:  The Spice Trade

  • 1.25 oz Finlandia vodka
  • .75 oz Barenjager honey liqueur
  • 4 oz Fresh squeezed nectarine juice
  • .25 oz Fresh lime juice
  • .75 oz Fresh vanilla bean simple syrup
  • 1 dash Saffron (6-8 strands)
  • 6 Mint leaves

In a mixing glass add mint, saffron, fresh lime juice and vanilla syrup then muddle contents. After muddling add fresh nectarine juice, Finlandia vodka and honey liqueur to glass. Shake vigorously. Pour over highball glass filled with crushed ice. Garnish with mint sprig and nectarine twist.

BARTENDER: Mike Henderson, Denver, Co.

RECIPE: Beet Down #2

  • 1.5 oz Finlandia Tangerine
  • 1 oz Aperol
  • .75 oz Yuzu Juice
  • .5 oz Ginger Syrup*
  • .25 oz Grapefruit Juice
  • 1 oz Marinated Beet Cubes
  • 1 other Large Sprig of Mint

In a mixing glass or tin combine and muddle beet cubes, yuzu juice, grapefruit juice, and ginger syrup. Add Finlandia Tangerine, Aperol, and mint. Add ice and Shake vigorously for about 10 seconds.Double fine strain into a Collins Glass filled with 3 cubes of Kold Draft or Block ice. Garnish with a large sprig of mint and 3 beet cubes skewered on a cocktail pick. Finish with a stainless steel spoon straw.

*For Ginger Syrup combine 2 cups coarsely chopped ginger, 2 cups sugar, and 1.5 cups water. Simmer over heat for 1 hour, bottle, and let cool.

BARTENDER: Todd Thrasher, Alexandria, VA

RECIPE: Nothing Left to Lose

  • 1 oz Finlandia Vodka
  • 1/2 oz Yellow Chartreuse
  • 3 oz Bay Leaf Soda with Roasted Lemon
  • 4 dash Lemon Bitters

Fill a glass with crushed ice.  Add Vodka and Chartreuse. Add Bitters and Soda. Stir gently.

BARTENDER: Chris Asay, Rumson, NJ

RECIPE: Strawberry Kissel Explosion

  • 1.5 oz Finlandia Vodka
  • 1 oz Amaretto
  • 1.5 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1 oz Orange Juice
  • 1.5 oz Simple Syrup
  • 2 dash Rhubarb Bitters
  • 1000 ml Water
  • 5 grams Sodium Alginate
  • 150 ml Strawberry Juice
  • 50 ml Tuaca
  • 50 ml Honey Syrup (2:1, Honey:Water)
  • 6 grams Calcium Lactate Gluconate

In a shaker combine Finlandia Vodka, Amaretto, Lemon juice, Orange Juice, Simple Syrup and Rhubarb bitters shake well. Strain into a Champagne flute rimmed with toasted almond sugar. Add in 10 Strawberry Pearls (For the strawberry pearls: prepare an Alginate bath by combining Sodium Alginate and Water.)

In a separate bowl mix Strawberry juice, Tuaca, Honey syrup and Calcium gluconolactate and mix with an immersion blender. Let solution sit for 12 hours

Using a syringe drop the strawberry solution into the alginate bath. A membrane will form around the juice after moments. Use a slotted spoon to remove the pearls and rinse in water. Garnish with a Strawberry.

BARTENDER: Scott Fitzgerald, Odenton, MD

RECIPE: Look Better Naked

  • 1.5 oz Finlandia Cranberry
  • 1 Packet of Low Cal Sweetener
  • 1/2 Squeeze Fresh Lemon
  • Soda Water

Fill Glass 1/3 with ice, top with lemon wheel. Repeat 2 more times for “layered” look. In a separate glass, combine Finlandia, sweetener, and fresh lemon juice. Gently shake. Put straw through the center of the lemon wheels to hold them in place, Pour ingredients over ice and lemon wheels. Top off with Soda Water.

BARTENDER: Michael Bulmash, Baltimore, MD

RECIPE: Sinlandia

  • 1.50 oz Finlandia Raspberry
  • 1. oz Malbec
  • 1. oz Blackberry Brandy
  • 1 dash Triple Sec
  • .50 oz Passion Fruit Syrup
  • .50 oz Soda Water
  • Mixture of fresh fruits

Combine Finlandia Raspberry Vodka with Malbec, Triple Sec, Blackberry Brandy, and Passion Fruit Syrup. Add mixed variety of fruits & muddle. Shake well over Ice. Pour into glass & top with soda water.

BARTENDER: Christine Misiura, Orlando, FL

RECIPE: Mixed Berry Fizz

  • 1 oz Finlandia Raspberry Vodka
  • 1 oz Finlandia Black Currant Vodka
  • 1 oz Creme de Mure (blackberry liqueur)
  • 4 other fresh blackberries
  • 3 other fresh raspberries
  • 4 other lemon wedges
  • .75 oz Monin Pure Cane Syrup
  • 5 oz Sprite

Muddle blackberries, raspberries and lemon wedges. Add ice to mixing glass. Add Finlandia Vodkas, simple syrup and creme de mure. Shake vigorously and strain over fresh ice into glass (20 oz high ball). Top with Sprite and lightly stir. Garnish with lemon/berry pinwheel.

BARTENDER: Jason Beatty, Indianapolis, IN

RECIPE: Peach Treaty

  • 4.5 cl Finlandia Classic
  • 9 cl Rooibos Tea with Berries
  • 9 cl Peach Juice
  • 2 cl Orange Blossom Honey with Water
  • 1.5 cl Lemon Juice
  • 3 Ice Spheres with Violets Frozen Within

Add ice spheres into glass. Add ingredients into mixing glass with separate ice and shake vigorously. Strain ingredients over ice spheres into glass. Garnish with lemon wheel.

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