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The Vodka Lover’s Essential Shopping List

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A real, dedicated vodka drinker doesn’t just have a well-stocked vodka collection ranging from classic potato to crazily flavored. To be a true vodka enthusiast, you need a well-stocked fridge as well, so you can instantly whip up one of the cocktailing world’s many great vodka-based drinks. Here, the essential shopping list for the vodka lover, organized by cocktail category. Focus on one area, or buy the whole lot and be prepared for any cocktail order you get. Grab your favorite bottle and let this list do the rest.

Matthew Kelly/Supercall

For Martinis


Some of our favorite Martini bars in the country serve the classic cocktail tableside via Martini carts, but the elegant presentation isn’t limited to bars and restaurants. You can set up your own at home. Any bar cart will do—all you need to do is stock it with supplies for classic, dirty, French and Perfect Martinis. Don’t forget the garnishes.

The Essentials:

  • Dry vermouth
  • Sweet vermouth
  • Quality jarred green olives
  • Lemons
  • Cocktail onions
  • Cornichons 
  • Pineapple juice
  • Chambord

Matthew Kelly/Supercall

For Bloody Marys


Perhaps the most beloved of all the vodka drinks, the Bloody Mary and its variations are savory delights to be had at brunch, or anytime really. Keep these essentials around, and you’ll be ready to set up a Bloody bar or mix a Bloody Caesar at a moment’s notice.

The Essentials:

  • Lemon juice
  • Tomato juice
  • Clamato juice
  • Horseradish
  • Celery Salt
  • Tabasco Sauce
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Celery stalks
  • Lemons and limes

The Extras:
  • Beef stock (for Bullshots)
  • Cooked shrimp
  • Cubed Cheese
  • Bacon strips
  • Old Bay
  • Olives

Matthew Kelly/Supercall

For Fruity Cocktails


Sometimes you just want to throw some vodka and fruit juice into a glass and call it a day. And that’s fine by us—there are many tasty cocktails that are also extremely simple to make. Stock up on these essentials if you’re in the mood for a Screwdriver, Greyhound or Sea Breeze.

The Essentials:

  • Orange juice
  • Grapefruit juice
  • Cranberry juice
  • Oranges
  • Lemons
  • Limes

Matthew Kelly/Supercall

For the Vodka Cranberry


Yes, you need more than just cranberry juice to make a really great Vodka Cranberry. Forget about shoddily made dive bar drinks or bottle service at the club—our versions of the Vodka Cranberry are 10 times better than the original. Here’s what you need to buy to make the best, kicked up Vodka Crans ever.

The Essentials:

  • Demerara sugar cubes
  • White sugar
  • Whole, fresh cranberries
  • Lemons
  • Limes
  • Oranges
  • Orange bitters
  • Allspice berries
  • Sparkling lemonade
  • Cranberry juice (if you insist on making the old-school version)
  • Soda water
  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Sherry 
  • Cranberry liqueur

Matthew Kelly/Supercall

For Black and White Russians


Whether you prefer a Black Russian or its creamier cousin, the White Russian, it’s easy to keep the ingredients stocked for these cocktails.

The Essentials:

  • Coffee liqueur
  • Heavy cream

The Extras:
  • Non-dairy creamer (for The Dude wannabes)

Matthew Kelly/Supercall

For the Ultimate Vodka and Caviar Experience 


Whether it’s New Year’s Eve, Valentine’s Day, an anniversary or just a classy evening in, caviar is the perfect way to celebrate. It also happens to be amazing with vodka. Whether you like it on the side with a cold shot of vodka or actually in your drink (as it is in the Roe Your Boat), here’s everything you need to host an elegant, caviar-fueled cocktail hour.

The Cocktail Essentials:

  • Cacao blanc
  • White chocolate liqueur
  • Salt
  • Roe (we like bowfin, salmon and golden whitefish roes)
  • Lemons

The Caviar Essentials:
  • A variety of roes
  • Rye toast
  • Blini
  • Crackers
  • Sour cream
  • Scallions
  • Red Onions
  • Eggs
  • Truffle honey

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