Few days before my exams started I was by Belvedere Vodka, the Polish super premium Vodka brand for a bartending masterclass with their global brand ambassador Allison Dedianko at Wink.

She showed us how to make six cocktails (scroll down for recipes) & then we all got a chance to try our hand at making our favorite one. She even mentioned how it’s such a pleasure to bartend in India with the wide availability of fresh fruits & ingredients. Bartending isn’t an exact science like baking but instead it’s a lot like cooking. It allows a lot of room for experimentation & personalization. You can modify anything to fit your tastes, just be sure to have fun with it! Another great tip? Chill the glass. There’s nothing worse than a cool beer in a warm glass, same goes for cocktails.
I knew I couldn’t mix my drink & take photos at the same time, so I photographed Karishma mixing her drink, a saffron & cinnamon daisy.

I always thought I was a sweet cocktail kind of gal but when I tasted all the drinks I was surprised to find that my favorite was the clove sour.

I was a tad intimidated to be behind the bar but Allison & the resident bartender were great teachers.

The clove sour I made with fresh clove infused simple syrup.
 Turns out Allison was right, you do appreciate your drink more if you make it yourself.

Here are the recipes to the drinks were learnt. Try making some this weekend (& don’t forget to share a photo if you do!)

Lemongrass Silver Fizz
50 ml Belvedere Vodka
10 ml Fresh lemon juice
10 ml Simple syrup
2 inch slice of Lemongrass
15ml Egg white
Topped with Cream Soda

In a cocktail shaker muddle lemongrass.
Add lemon juice, egg white and simple syrup.
Dry shake the ingredients with ice and fine strain into a champagne flute.
Top with cream soda.

Since cream soda isn’t very commonly found in India, Alison just substituted it with some vanilla syrup & regular soda (similar flavors). Remember that these recipes are just a starting point, feel free to play around with them

Pineapple and Cardamom Martini
50 ml Belvedere Vodka
20 ml Pineapple juice.
10 ml Cardamom infused Simple syrup.
2 Cardamom pods.
2 chunks of fresh Pineapple

Muddle cardamom with Simple syrup and  fresh pineapple.
Add rest of the ingredients and shake with cubed ice.
Fine strain into a chilled martini glass.
Garnish with a pineapple leaf.

Saffron and Cinnamon Daisy
50 ml Belvedere  Vodka
25 ml saffron and Cinnamon syrup
25 ml lemon juice.
Dash Premium triple Sec
Dash Egg white

Dry shake all ingredients to emulsify the egg white and create a foam.
Add ice and shake until very cold.
Fine shake into a chilled Martini glass.
Garnish with a piece of cinnamon.

Clove Sour
50 ml  Belvedere Vodka
25 ml clove infused simple syrup
25 ml lemon juice
2 dashes Bitters.

Shake with ice and strain over fresh ice into a rocks glass.
Garnish with a slice of lemon.