Infusions: A Guide to Flavoring Your Own Spirits

by Sarah Anderson • Photography by Two Eagles Marcus

There is something impossibly irresistible about handcrafted; the extra attention and meticulous detail easily turns the mundane into the marvelous. Enter handcrafted cocktails. What makes them so? The time, unique ingredients and precision that goes into making the perfect flavor. These one-of-a-kind cocktails wouldn’t be complete without liquor infusions: spirits hand mixed and flavored with a distinct taste.

“Although the thought of doing your own infusions sounds very complicated and time-consuming, it is actually very easy as long as you’re diligent with the timing of everything,”  Chris McDonald, owner of TerraGR, explains.

Chris McDonald, Owner of TerraGR

The process is as follows: Choose your ingredients, place them in the spirit of your choice and let the concoction sit for 3-5 days, depending on the volume and the desired intensity of flavor. McDonald recommends using a sealed glass bottle or jar and storing in a dark place. The key to creating the perfect infusion is testing the product daily. As soon as the right amount of flavor is infused, strain the mixture and write down the exact ingredients you used and the amount of days you let it sit so you can duplicate the process. Some infusions, McDonald notes, can be continuously infused and just get more flavor as the time passes. A good one to try this with is vanilla bean vodka.

It’s important to know the ingredients you are working with and adjust your procedure accordingly. For example, when using cucumber, you should peel the cucumber and use the peel as well as the inside, as a majority of the flavor comes out in the skin. The same goes for citrus—you can peel it and just use the rind. Herbs should sit in the spirits for no more than 48 hours as they will turn rancid and go bitter.

The possibilities are endless when making your own infusions. Feel free to mix ingredients, try new spirit and flavor combinations, and use this delicious art as a way to express yourself.


Sweet Lavender Gin

750ml Gin
¾ cup of simple syrup
handful of fresh lavendar

Put all ingredients in the bottle. Top with gin. Seal the top.

Let sit at room temperature for 48 hours.

Strain into an empty bottle.

Cinnamon Cranberry Vodka

750ml Vodka
1 ½ cup cranberries (put in food processor)
3 cinnamon sticks
¾ cup of orange peels
5 cloves

Put all inredients in the bottle. Top with vodka. Seal the top.

Let sit at room temperature for 48 hours to a week. Strain into an empty bottle.

Rosemary Peach Brandy

750ml Brandy
1 ½ peaches
3 medium to small rosemary sprigs
½ cup simple syrup

Put all ingredients in the bottle. Top with brandy. Seal the top.

Let sit at room temperature for 48 hours.

Strain into an empty bottle.


Sarah Anderson

Sarah shuffles between editorial support, content production and advertising at WLM. She loves her job so much, and isn’t just saying that to impress her boss.


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