You can’t get much more Californian than an appletini. Originally called the Adam’s Apple after the barman who created it in the late 90s at Lola’s West Hollywood restaurant, the appletini perfectly captures the spirit of a pre-9/11, pre-Recession America. This irreverent, radioactive green cocktail is fun, eye-catching, and deceptively boozy. In short, it’s pure West Hollywood hedonism in a glass.
This easy-to-drink cocktail quickly became a hit, especially with young women. The candy-coloured drink was attractive, an interesting mix of sour and sweet, and served in martini glasses the size of Olympic swimming pools. Local law enforcement soon had to step in after pulling over several drunk women who said they’d been drinking apple martinis all afternoon at Lola’s. After pulling the drink from the menu, the restaurant had to reinstate the loved Appletini following public outrage. And so the fate of the notorious appletini was sealed.
The artificial-tasting appletini was right at home in an era unafraid of high-fructose corn syrup and sweet, syrupy concoctions. It’s since been landed with a reputation for being the drink of choice for uncultured young women and gay men.
But What Exactly is an Appletini?
An apple martini, or appletini for short, is a cocktail containing vodka and an apple-flavoured liqueur or mixer. This could include apple juice, apple cider, apple brandy, or most traditionally, sour apple liqueur, which gives the drink its bright green colour.
In recent years, bartenders have been trying to clean up appletini’s image by using more natural ingredients. Substituting the apple sour liqueur for fresh apple juice or some quality apple cider prevents making the drink too tangy and “green-flavoured”.
In that spirit, Drinks&Co recommend trying this super simple appletini recipe without apple sours and with an emphasis on natural ingredients.
Ingredients (Makes 1):
- 50ml vodka
- 50ml cloudy apple juice (can also be substituted with regular apple juice if you don’t have it)
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- a slice of apple to garnish
How to Make an Appletastic Appletini
- Shake the vodka, cloudy apple juice, lemon juice and maple syrup in a cocktail shaker filled with ice until the shaker feels very cold.
- Strain into a martini glass and garnish with a slice of apple.
The drink is fruity, refreshing and naturally sweet.
- Some variations include a dash of vermouth to give added depth.
- Substitute the vodka for rum to make a “Rumpletini”.
- Swap apple juice for apple cider for a slightly boozier version.
- Add a cherry instead of an apple to garnish.
- Use apple sour liqueur for some 90s nostalgia!