It’s no secret that one of my favourite cocktails is the Ballet Russe; it’s incredibly sour, yet so very, very tasty and a hell of a lot of fun to watch people drink for the first time – but what do you do when you don’t want to have your mouth blown apart by 2 ounces of lime and lemon juice? Well, according to the Russian Fizz, the answer is that you don’t change a damn thing about the original recipe, but you do add 3 to 5 ounces of ginger ale to it.
I mean, obvs, right?
The good news is that even after adding the ginger ale, you still have the iconic temperament of the Ballet Russe, but the ginger compliments the sharp nature of the other ingredients whilst removing the insanely sour edge of the original drink, leaving just a pleasant acidic note that tingles on the palate. The even better news is that it somehow adds a creamy texture to the drink, as well as hints of vanilla undertones which is frankly a marvel when you think about it – how on earth does ginger ale add vanilla?! It boggles my mind, but I’ve learned not to question these things, and just chalk it up to being a happy little accident, Bob Ross style.
On the whole, the Russian Fizz is a much gentler cocktail than the Ballet Russe, but it still has a zany edge to it. I can imagine that this would be the perfect summer BBQ drink, both refreshing and invigorating and almost certainly a drink that none of your guests will have tried! So why not do them all a favour and introduce them to the wonderful world of Ballet Russe and Russian Fizz?
Yes, this is a repurposed coffee cup.
♦ 1 ounce vodka
♦ ¾ ounce crème de cassis
♦ 1 ½ ounces lime juice
♦ ½ ounces lemon juice
♦ 1 ounce simple syrup
♦ 3 to 5 ounces ginger ale
Shake the first 5 ingredients together and strain into a chilled highball glass. Pour in the ginger ale, stir and serve.