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Entertaining
10 Cocktails That Sound Gross, But Taste Amazing

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We at Supercall have had the unfortunate experience of making some cocktails that sound like they could be delicious, but actually taste like a dumpster fire. There was the infamous, rancid Mac n’ Cheese-tini’; the historic, stinky Jerry Thomas ale and rye bread punch; and then, heaven help us, there was the blended Burger King Whopperito tequila cocktail (in retrospect, there was no possible positive outcome for that one). But on the contrary, some of the best drinking experiences come when trying a cocktail that sounds unappetizing but actually tastes amazing. From a frozen Bloody Mary made with milk to a Hot Toddy flavored like sweet-and-sour chicken, here are 10 cocktails that may sound strange, but actually taste delicious—we promise.

Matthew Kelly/Supercall

A Thanksgiving-appropriate riff on the classic beefy Bullshot (in itself, a drink that tastes way better than it sounds), this cocktail has plenty working against it: turkey stock, fried turkey skin for garnish, and gravy fat-washed vodka, a phrase that couldn’t be more unappealing. However, the result is super smooth, savory (but less salty than the bouillon-based Bullshot), and a little spicy, thanks to a pinch of cayenne pepper. Also, the crispy fried turkey skin garnish is the bomb, and anyone who says otherwise is wrong.

The Essentials

gravy fat-washed vodka
homemade turkey stock
lemon juice
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Unless you’re Paula Deen, any recipe with the phrase “a pound of butter” probably gives you chest pains. Thankfully, this rich cocktail uses that much to fat wash some Hennessy, but only two ounces of the stuff are in the actual drink. In addition to the buttery Cognac, this recipe calls for a homemade tobacco syrup, concocted by simmering baking spices, sugar and vanilla with tobacco. In the end, it yields a perfect balance of sweet, savory and bitter, and not at all like your uncle smoking a cigar while eating buttered mashed potatoes.

The Essentials

Hennessy
Honey Syrup
Tea
Matthew Kelly/Supercall

If you’re one of those people who cringe when they smell cilantro within a five foot radius, we dare you to try this cocktail to see if it inches you towards the cult of the divisive herb. Made with both a cilantro syrup and a celery syrup, it tempers those bold, vegetal flavors with gin, bubbly club soda, lime and balsamic vinegar. It’s light, refreshing, and herbaceous without being overpowering, and it’s been known to convert even the most devout of cilantro haters.

The Essentials

Gin
celery syrup
Cilantro
Matthew Kelly/Supercall
Caviar and chocolate are two of life’s greatest indulgences—but put them together in a cocktail, and you’re sure to receive some questionable glances. Trust us: This cocktail does the impossible by balancing sweet cacao blanc and white chocolate liqueur with a salty saline solution and topping of bright orange fish roe. The saline solution is key to bridging the polar opposite flavors of white chocolate and caviar, creating a drink that tastes downright luxurious.

The Essentials

Vodka
Cacao Blanc
Roe
Matthew Kelly/Supercall

Cocktails can have the same effect on the soul as a steaming bowl of chicken soup, so combining the two is a surefire way to achieve maximum nourishment. In this twist on the Hot Toddy, chicken broth is heated with pineapple syrup, lime and Sriracha to capture the sweet, sour and spicy flavors of the namesake Asian chicken dish. A glug of botanical gin highlights the herbs in the chicken broth (parsley, thyme, bay leaves and peppercorns), which are a pleasant foil to the fruity, spicy and salty notes of the rest of the ingredients.

The Essentials

Pineapple Syrup
Chicken Broth
Gin
Matthew Kelly/Supercall

The world has collectively gotten over the shock of eating black squid ink pasta by now, but there’s still a ways to go on convincing people to drink it in a cocktail. This spooky tipple may just do the trick with an intriguing combination of squid ink, grape brandy, sweet vermouth, lime and agave, garnished with a sprig of fresh oregano. It’s bold for sure, but that little bit of brine in the ink actually makes the sweet grape brandy and vermouth come together masterfully.

The Essentials

grape brandy
sweet vermouth
squid ink
Matthew Kelly/Supercall

If freezing a Bloody Mary wasn’t enough to give you pause, adding milk to the mix certainly will. But even if it sounds all wrong, it tastes oh-so right. Jalapeño-infused vodka plays up the savory tomato juice, while milk mellows out the spiciness to create a frozen drink that’s citrusy, creamy and zesty—perfect for hot summer days when a regular Bloody Mary sounds too heavy. While you’re experimenting, these Bloody Mary Jello Shots are also the best thing ever.

The Essentials

Tomato Juice
Jalapeño-Infused Vodka
Milk
Matthew Kelly/Supercall

A cocktail inspired by a bagel and lox sandwich may sound odd, but this breakfast-ready drink proves the meeting of the two was kismet. Earthy beets are turned into a tart shrub—with a taste similar to the combo of tomatoes and capers—which is mixed with cucumber vodka, lemon juice and soda water. A topping of everything bagel seasoning (poppy seeds, salt, onion, garlic and sesame seeds) and fresh dill further nod to the deli favorite. Dwight Schrute would be proud.

The Essentials

Cucumber Vodka
Beet Shrub
Lemon Juice
Matthew Kelly/Supercall

Objectively, adding olives to a Martini to make it dirty is already a weird move, so you might as well go the full nine yards with this Dirty Martini made with sardines. Don’t worry, we’re not asking you to muddle sardines into a mixing glass. Instead, fat wash gin with sardine oil, and use that gin in tandem with regular olive brine and dry vermouth. Garnish with a sardine-stuffed Castelvetrano olive, and drink up the savory, salty, silky final product.

The Essentials

sardine oil-washed gin
Vermouth
Olive Brine
Marisa Chafetz/Supercall

Albeit not as wild as some of the other cocktails on this list, heating up a Gin & Tonic is sure to make puritan G&T drinkers’ stomachs turn. The seemingly revolutionary idea is actually rooted in history; people were drinking hot Gin Twists—made with hot water, lemon and sugar—way back in the 1820s. In the modern day, we’re more inclined to borrow the floral, botanical flavors of tonic water by simply stirring together tonic syrup, gin and hot water, then garnishing the mug with an orange twist. Give it a try on a chilly day, and prepare to have your mind blown.

 

The Essentials

Gin
Tonic Syrup
Hot Water

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