Pistachio Russian


Geek and Tonic has been away for a hot minute. Over 2 years, in fact.

It’s been a busy period, I’m sure that much is obvious – after all, many a-post extolled the significance of mixology in my life, but we all know that even the most passionate of hobbies have to take a back seat when push comes to shove.

Since I last posted, I’ve finished 5 games, designed a significant chunk of another, bought a house, changed jobs, had 2 dogs cross the rainbow bridge, and adopted another. All of that combined has taken a lot out of me, but I feel that all of it just made me stronger – and that’s all that matters, really.

I’m not going to bore you with a diatribe of personal stories because, frankly, they don’t have any place here – booze does. To that end, it feels fitting that the recipe that kick-starts this venture is a variation of the classic, beloved White Russian; vodka, some kind of delicious liqueur, milk/cream, this is the bread and butter of Geek and Tonic so HERE WE GO!

Believe it or not, I’ve only just started making cocktails again recently. In the last year and a half or so, it’s been all wine, all the time, mainly because of the convenience of being able to open the fridge, pop that cork and pour, Lady Gaga stylee. It can’t be denied that cocktails do require an extra degree of effort that is just so daunting sometimes – and that’s where the classic recipes shines. 3 ingredients, a bit of ice, a good shake, and baby you got a flavour stew going.

This particular flavour stew was made possible because we’ve just upgraded the bar and, sadly, had to nominate surplus bottles to get drunk sharpish; namely The Lakes Salted Caramel Vodka Liqueur and Dolce Cliento Pistachio Cream Liqueur. I LOVE both of them, flavourful and moreish in equal parts, but a new simple rule has been implemented to make sure that we don’t end up buying more than we can hold – will we buy it again immediately once it’s finished?

As much as I love both of the alcoholic ingredients, the answer was a resounding ‘no’. There’s always other options, and life is too short. 

But I couldn’t deny that they sounded simply delicious together. Maybe it was divine inspiration, maybe it was the excellent White Russian* I had yesterday, who can truly know, but the first recipe that came to mind when I saw the two together was easy: a Pistachio Russian. A wonderfully decadent, creamy combination of deep caramel and subtle nutty, savoury notes of pistachio, it’s the perfect option for someone who enjoys a rich mouthfeel, but isn’t one for coffee flavouring, not to mention the slight saltiness of the former becoming a great foil for the latter. There’s a bitterness that feels coffee-adjacent, but the overwhelming flavour profile is sweetness, so be warned that it’s best served after a meal (or any other time you damn well fancy, go wild, I’m not your mother).

I probably wouldn’t have too many consecutively with the sugar content, but I would savour every single one until my conscience kicked in. It’s so drinkable though, that might be more than you expect.

* The White Russian in question was from Bar Maroc in Huddersfield, a fantastically relaxed, calm space that combines cocktails with dope vegan pizzas, I would heartily recommend it to anyone who is in the area.


The Recipe

♦  2 ounces The Lakes Salted Caramel Vodka Liqueur
♦  1 ounce Dolce Cliento pistachio cream liqueur
♦  1 ounce milk (of your choice – we tried it with both whole and soy!)

Shake the ingredients together with ice and then strain into a chilled glass.


Thoughts, feedback or have your own recipe? Let us know here!