The Mixology Talk Podcast, Episode #162

It’s one of the easiest mixology techniques there is! This week we’re talking all about infusions and how you can easily make them for use in your cocktail recipes.

Click here to Subscribe on your Smartphone and never miss an Episode!

On your iPhone:

  • iTunes Podcast App IconLook for the iPhone’s default “Podcasts App”. It may already be there, or you may need to download it. It looks like this:
  • In the app, click “Search” in the bottom-right corner and search for “Mixology Talk Podcast
  • Click on the icon under the “Podcasts” section, and in the next screen click the purple “Subscribe” button.

Stitcher iconIf you prefer, you can also subscribe using the “Stitcher” app, also free & available in the App store.


On your Android Phone:

  • Stitcher icon AndroidDownload the “Stitcher” app from the Play store by searching for “Stitcher”
  • Click on the “Search” icon and search for “Mixology Talk Podcast
  • Click “+” to add the show to your Playlist.


For the months of September and October, you’ll see a lot of infusions on A Bar Above – from easy ones (like this tea-infused Gin Old Fashioned cocktail) to stuff that’s a lot more advanced (hint: that’s the next podcast episode).

And if you’re really into the infusion process, make sure to head over to our educational courses page and sign up for our new Alcohol Infusion Workshop for more infusion recipes and techniques.

Making infusions is such a fun and easy technique to use at your bar because it literally could NOT be any simpler. Your morning coffee or tea is, in fact, an infusion!


What are infusions? This is where you brew alcohol with herbs, fruits, spices, etc. to get an extraction of flavor. By doing this, you can create homemade spirits with the flavor profile you desire, with which you can then make delicious craft cocktails. 

This process also works for syrups and extracts, so you aren’t limited to alcohol. 

Behind the bar, the two kinds of infusions you will find the most often are infused syrups and infused spirits. And many of the things you buy for your backbar are actually already infused.

From liquors (infusions + sweetener) to amari (bitter infusions) to bitters (super concentrated bitter infusions), infusions are happening whether you are doing them or not!


Check out this episode to get tips on infusion ingredients for your favorite cocktails.

  • What flavors are good choices for infusion and what aren’t
  • The basics of making infused syrups and infused alcohols
  • Ways to speed up your infusions without ruining them
  • Why you should NEVER infuse alcohol on the stovetop… but you can infuse syrups that way!

Watch Now:


Nerdy Infusion Techniques:

Want to infuse with us? We’re making a bunch of infusions, and you can join us in the Facebook group. Head here to join & to see the video where we’re getting our favorite infusions started.



 The fun thing about infusing alcohol is that you have a lot to play with. Of course, safety concerns come into play the more advanced you get and the more unique your ingredients.

You can infuse pretty much any spirit, but infused vodka is probably the most common and easiest spirit to begin with because its neutral flavor makes it a great base for cocktails with a variety of flavors.You can even turn a bottle of vodka into gin. Check out the recipe!



But before we get too advanced, here some common ingredients to get you started:

  • Fresh fruits/fresh berries, which bring natural sweetness 
  • Fresh cranberries, which provide a different kind of bright flavor than sweet fruits like strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries
  • Cinnamon sticks & ground spices
  • Vanilla bean pods (check out our vanilla extract recipe, too!)
  • Other fresh ingredients sprigs of rosemary, fresh ginger, and other fresh herbs
  • Spicy ingredients like jalapeños or other hot peppers 

As with making cocktails, just take into consideration the flavor combinations you’re creating. 




  • Sealable container like a Mason jar 
  • Bottle of liquor
  • Whatever flavorful ingredients you’ve chosen


  1. Boil your airtight container first to ensure you have a sterilized, clean glass jar.
  2. Pour in the liquid, and then add your ingredients.
  3. After 24-48 hours, taste your flavored vodka (or whatever spirit you’re infusing) to see how it’s going and if the flavors are working how you’d like.
  4. Steep your 
  5. Use a mesh strainer to pour the newly-flavored, strained vodka into a sealable glass container.
  6. And now you can add your vodka infusion to your favorite drink!

Note: Infusion time varies greatly. Depending on the ingredients (dry spices vs fresh produce, etc.), you’ll have to let your alcohol steep for anywhere between 3 days and 2 months.

For a stronger flavor, you’ll have to let the infusion sit for longer. For example vanilla extract takes 2-6 months to full settle. Delicate ingredients like blueberries has a really mild flavor that takes longer to steep– but they also break down in the alcohol more easily.

Bitter flavors turn really quickly, so be careful with bitter flavoring ingredients like mint. Honestly, many infusions shouldn’t take longer than 1-2 weeks, but it does really depend on the ingredients and if you’re looking for intense flavors or not.



  1. Add your flavored ingredient to water and boil on the stove. 
  2. Once you’ve pulled out the flavor, pull the mixture from the heat source and strain.
  3. Taste your mixture (it will be hot!) and add sugar accordingly. 

Note: Sweet ingredients will obviously produce more natural sugar, so you won’t need to add as much granulated sugar yourself.

The great thing about these syrups is that you can add them to alcoholic beverages and non-alcoholic drinks, too! They make the perfect gift for anyone who loves cocktails, mocktails, or cooking. And extracts are great for anyone who likes to bake.


Don’t forget: Our swanky stainless steel fine-mesh strainer is the perfect choice for straining all the little bits out of your infusions, whether you’re working with fruit, tea, or pretty much anything else! 


Made with an extra fine mesh and double-welded handle, this strainer is made to last! Bigger cone lets you strain faster while still catching every last particle of ice, pulp, etc. This will be the last fine strainer you ever buy!

(Now that’s a good looking strainer, no?)

Was this Podcast helpful? Click Here to Give us a Rating in iTunes!

Then click “View in iTunes” under the Podcast Image on the left and enter your rating on the “Ratings and Reviews” tab in iTunes.


Your reviews really matter – they help more people find us in iTunes and help us improve this Podcast!


Infused alcohols, syrups, and extracts make fantastic holiday gifts, so if you get started now, you’ll have plenty of time to create unique and thoughtful alcohol gifts for your loved ones.

What are you infusing?  Have you done Sous Vide infusions? Let’s hear all about your tips in the comments!

Subscribe to our YouTube Channel and you'll catch all new episodes, as well as other great videos about cocktails, techniques, and more!

Follow the link in the button above to go straight to iTunes, or just search your favorite podcast app for "Mixology Talk Podcast"

Click the button to subscribe to the podcast in Stitcher!

[et_pb_4divi_cbg custom_query="on" post_type="podcast" fullwidth="3" posts_number="3" show_more="on" show_author="off" show_pagination="off" _builder_version="3.22.7" header_font="Oswald|600|||||||" header_text_color="#534e48" header_font_size="24px" meta_font="Roboto||on||||||" meta_font_size="14px" body_font="Roboto||||||||" body_font_size="16px" header_line_height_tablet="2" header_text_shadow_horizontal_length="header_text_shadow_style,%91object Object%93" header_text_shadow_vertical_length="header_text_shadow_style,%91object Object%93" header_text_shadow_blur_strength="header_text_shadow_style,%91object Object%93" meta_line_height_tablet="2" meta_text_shadow_horizontal_length="meta_text_shadow_style,%91object Object%93" meta_text_shadow_vertical_length="meta_text_shadow_style,%91object Object%93" meta_text_shadow_blur_strength="meta_text_shadow_style,%91object Object%93" body_line_height_tablet="2" body_text_shadow_horizontal_length="body_text_shadow_style,%91object Object%93" body_text_shadow_vertical_length="body_text_shadow_style,%91object Object%93" body_text_shadow_blur_strength="body_text_shadow_style,%91object Object%93" z_index_tablet="500" /]

We love getting your questions and answering them on the air! Submit your questions here and we’ll answer on an upcoming episode.