Making drinks is easy, but pouring a slug of booze over a flavored ice cube is even easier. These frozen, make-ahead cubes contain everything needed to make a White Russian, Sazerac or Negroni, save for the base spirit (and a garnish, if you’re feeling fancy). Freeze up a tray or three at the beginning of the week, and come home every day to an (almost) instant cocktail that only gets better as the flavored ice melts into the booze. It’s a lazy drinker’s dream come true.
Instant Cocktail Cubes (Just Add Booze!)
The Dude would approve. These frozen cubes, layered with coffee liqueur-spiked coffee and whole milk, make already easy White Russians (or Caucasians, as he would say) even easier. Freeze up a trayful, then pop a cube into a glass, and top with vodka whenever you want that sweet fix. Swirl and drink right away for an ultra-strong drink, or wait until the cube melts completely before taking a sip. Feel free to add two cubes for even more of a creamy-coffee punch. Note: Don’t be afraid of the less-than-beautiful look the milk takes on as it melts. The drink will still taste great.
Negroni purists may scoff at this deconstructed variation on the classic aperitif, but innovative drinkers will appreciate how the drink changes over time as the frozen mix of Campari, sweet vermouth and zesty grapefruit water melts into the gin. The end result might not taste exactly like the old-school standard, but it will still sate your zesty, bittersweet cravings.
On a sweltering hot New Orleans day (or even a temperate Seattle evening), a simple Sazerac is a welcome refresher. These frozen cubes of water, simple syrup, absinthe and Peychaud’s bitters close the gap between you and that glassful of whiskey satisfaction. Drop one cube into a glass, add a pour of rye whiskey (or Cognac if you want to invoke the cocktail’s historical origins), and start drinking. Sip quickly if you want to feel that whiskey kick, or let the cube languish and melt if you prefer that silky, soothing, anise-tinged sweetness.