By Kathryn Roberts

Apple martinis, or appletinis, offer a fruity and refreshing take on the traditional cocktail. Generally made with vodka rather than gin, the drink lends itself to variation. Once you master the basic drink, experiment with syrups, fresh herbs, liqueurs or spices to create a new favorite. Make a pitcher of the drink for an easy summer party cocktail.

Nightlife in Helsinki
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Mix up a pitcher of appletinis for a summer night soiree.

Step 1

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice cubes. If you do not have a cocktail shaker, use a large glass or a small pitcher.

Step 2

Add 3 parts vodka, 1 part apple schnapps or brandy, and 1 part sour mix. Alternatively, use 2 parts schnapps or brandy and omit the sour mix. Sour mix has a high sugar content, so the result will be a less-sweet cocktail. The drink also will look more clear without the apple-green color of the sour mix.

Step 3

Place the cover on the shaker and shake vigorously for at least 20 seconds. If using a glass or pitcher, stir until well mixed.

Step 4

Strain the drink into a chilled martini glass. If using a pitcher or glass, hold a fork against the edge to catch the ice when pouring into the martini glass.

Step 5

Garnish the appletini with a fresh slice of apple. Granny Smith apples offer a nice sour garnish. Alternatively, use two or three thin slices from different colored apples for contrast.