Cucumber-Infused Caesar and Thai Mango Caesar recipes

Canadians love many things, but when all the hockey and plaid layering leaves us in a parched state, there's one drink in particular that's sure to quench our thirst: a Caesar. You'll rarely find this clamato-drenched vodka cooler outside of the Great White North, where summer afternoons and Sunday brunches are relatively incomplete without them. In honour of National Caesar Day, we've got two new twists on the classic cocktail, courtesy of Canuck bartenders Rob Renda, Shane Beehan, Kate Boushel and Cory Gaudette.

CUCUMBER-INFUSED CAESAR

Nothing adds coolness and freshness to cocktail like cucumber, and I find it makes a great counterpoint to the savoury nature of the Caesar. It’s essential to muddle the cucumber slices right in the mixing glass, as you would with lime in making a Mojito. It takes a bit more effort, but it’s well, well worth it.

Ingredients
4 slices cucumber
2 dashes Tabasco pepper sauce
3 grinds fresh cracked salt and black peeper
3 dashes Fresh Cracked Salt and Pepper
1 oz Iceberg Vodka
4 oz. Mott’s Clamato Cocktail
Garnish
Cucumber slice
Fresh cracked salt and pepper
Rim
Fresh Cracked Salt and Black Pepper

Preparation
1. In a mixing glass, muddle everything but the vodka and Mott’s Clamato Cocktail.
2. Add the Iceberg Vodka and Mott’s Clamato Cocktail, and stir well to mix and spread the flavours around.
3. Rim a highball glass and fill to the top with ice.
4. Strain the mixture into the highball glass, and garnish.

*Add fresh basil, dill or even mint to the muddle of ingredients for some herbiness. If you can find a cucumber-infused vodka to use, even better as it will lend another layer of cucumber flavour.

THAI MANGO CAESAR

Mixing fruit juices into a Caesar is great for people who don’t like the taste of more traditional Caesars, as it sweetens the Mott’s Clamato Cocktail. The other barrier to cross with non-Caesar fans is texture, and mango helps eases people’s minds, as it has a thicker mouthfeel, similar to tomato juice. This recipe calls for Sriracha, a popular Thai hot sauce, and always, always gets a hugely positive response.

Ingredients
1 oz. Iceberg Vodka
1/2 barspoon Sriracha hot sauce
2 grinds fresh cracked black pepper
1 1/2 oz mango nectar
2 1/2 oz Mott’s Clamato Cocktail
Garnish
Mango chicken chunks on a skewer (or just mango chunks for ease)
Rim
Fresh cracked salt and black pepper

Preparation
1. Rim a highball glass with citrus and rimmer.
2. Fill the glass to the top with ice.
3. Add the ingredients in the order listed.
4. Stir well to mix up the cocktail and garnish.

*The flavour of mango pairs well with many different and diverse ingredients, so it’s fun to experiment. A rimmer of lemon pepper seasoning always brightens the mango flavour of the drink.

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