Black & White & Red Russians All Over

I skipped my calendar's drink for yesterday (a rum drink that I'll mix up this weekend with an upcoming rum drink). Instead I played around with black Russians, a drink I've liked from time to time.

CVS has various flavors of Absolut on sale this week, and I'd picked up a bottle of Raspberry (only because they didn't have Pear, which I really want to try). I figured raspberry would go well with the coffee liqueurs that black Russians call for.

For my first try I finished up my bottle of Kahlua: 2 to 1 proportions of vodka to Kahlua. Watching TV occasionally bears educational benefits: while I was watching Great Cocktails on the FLN network last week, the host emphasized shaking your drink until it's good and cold. I keep my vodka in the freezer, so I shook my concoction till the outside of the shaker was good and frosty.

Verdict: I've had that bottle of Kahlua forever, so maybe all the coffee taste was at the top of the bottle, but it gave more of a caramel than a coffee flavor to the black Russian. Not bad, just not what I wanted.

For my second try, I used Starbux liqueur and just freehanded the proportions, giving it a good until frosty shake again. Verdict: better, and the raspberry does go well with the coffee flavor. A little sweet and not a drink I'd have every night (though I'd like to try Tia Maria in it), but a nice alternative to the usual plain vodka black Russian. I'm not a fruit in my drink kind of guy, but a raspberry or two would be great too.