Alaska Cocktail Recipe

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Alaska Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Alaska Cocktail is a classic gin-based cocktail with origins dating back to the early 1900s. It is believed to have been created in honor of the Alaskan Gold Rush, and its popularity spread across the United States during the Prohibition era. This cocktail is a favorite among gin enthusiasts and those who appreciate a well-balanced, herbal drink.

  • The name 'Alaska' is thought to be a nod to the cold, icy landscapes of the state
  • The cocktail gained popularity during the Prohibition era, as gin was a commonly available spirit
  • The Alaska Cocktail is often enjoyed as an aperitif, before a meal

How Alaska Tastes?

The Alaska Cocktail is a complex and herbal drink, with a slightly sweet and citrusy undertone. It has a strong, bold flavor profile, with a smooth and silky finish.

Interesting facts about Alaska

  • The Alaska Cocktail is sometimes referred to as a 'Yellow Chartreuse Martini', due to its main ingredient
  • The cocktail is traditionally served in a chilled coupe or martini glass
  • The Alaska Cocktail has seen a resurgence in popularity in recent years, as more people discover the unique flavor profile of Yellow Chartreuse


A few good options for Alaska are:

  • Brockmans
  • Silent Pool Gin
  • Hendrick's Gin

Learn everything on which Gin to choose


2 oz of gin is the backbone of our Alaska cocktail. It's like the rhythm to a song, if you go off beat, the whole thing jumbles! Too little gin, you might as well be drinking a herbal tea. Too much, and you'll overpower the delicate dance of flavors with a punch of juniper. Gin brings a range of botanicals to the party that sets the stage for the rest of our ingredients.

Mary Mitkina

Yellow Chartreuse

At 0.75 oz, Yellow Chartreuse kicks in with its sweet, herby touch. This French liqueur is like the enigmatic character in a novel you can’t quite figure out - complex with hints of honey, saffron, and anise. Skip it, and you skip the heart of the drink. Less, and it doesn’t sing; more, and you lose the gin to a chorus of herbs.

Emma Rose

Orange Bitters

A couple of dashes, precisely 2, of orange bitters act like the zesty best friend - they bring out the best in gin and Chartreuse, highlighting the drink's depth. They’re the cherry on top, or, well, the bitters in the glass! Without them, our Alaska is like a night sky without stars – still good but lacking that sparkle.

Alex Green

Lemon Twist

This garnish isn't just here to look pretty. When you express a lemon twist, you're spritzing citrus oils that brighten the whole cocktail. It's like adding a spritz of cologne before a night out – it completes the ensemble. No lemon twist, and the cocktail feels a bit less cheery, like an Alaska without the Northern Lights.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Alaska Drink

  1. Chill the glass: Place a coupe or martini glass in the freezer to chill for at least 10 minutes
  2. Combine ingredients: In a mixing glass, combine the gin, Yellow Chartreuse, and orange bitters
  3. Stir: Fill the mixing glass with ice and stir the cocktail for 20-30 seconds, until well chilled and diluted
  4. Strain: Remove the chilled glass from the freezer and strain the cocktail into the glass
  5. Garnish: Express the oils from the lemon twist over the cocktail, and then place the twist on the rim of the glass

Pro Tips

  • Use fresh ingredients: The quality of your ingredients can greatly affect the taste of your cocktail. Always use fresh ingredients for the best results.
  • Chill your glass: A chilled glass can help keep your cocktail cold for longer. Place your glass in the freezer for at least 10 minutes before making your cocktail.
  • Stir, don't shake: Stirring your cocktail helps to maintain the clarity of the drink and prevents it from becoming too diluted.

Perfect Pairings


  • Grilled veggies: The herbal notes of the gin and the yellow Chartreuse complement the smokiness of grilled vegetables.
  • Seafood: Try oysters or shrimp to echo the botanical characteristics in gin, and the slight sweetness from the Yellow Chartreuse.
  • Cheese Plate: A selection of mild cheeses, such as brie or goat cheese, can provide a creamy counterpoint to the somewhat sharp and complex flavors of the cocktail.

Main Courses

  • Roasted Chicken: The botanicals in gin and the herbal qualities of Chartreuse pair nicely with a lemon-herb roasted chicken.
  • Pasta with Pesto: The green, herbaceous flavors of a classic pesto will resonate with the Chartreuse and freshen up the palette after each sip.


  • Lemon Tart: A dessert with a similar citrus note to the lemon twist used in the garnish could be a delightful follow up.
  • Almond Cake: The nuttiness of almonds complements the complexity of the gin and Chartreuse.

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What you could change in Alaska

  • Gin: If you don't have gin, you can substitute it with vodka. However, this will change the flavor profile of the cocktail.
  • Yellow Chartreuse: If you can't find Yellow Chartreuse, you can use Green Chartreuse. Keep in mind that Green Chartreuse has a stronger and more herbal flavor than Yellow Chartreuse.
  • Orange Bitters: If you don't have orange bitters, you can use Angostura bitters. However, this will give the cocktail a slightly different taste.

Explore all drinks starting with A here

And of course - twists🍹

Smoky Alaska


  • Gin:2 oz
  • Yellow Chartreuse:0.75 oz
  • Orange Bitters:2 dashes
  • Smoked Salt:1 pinch
  • Lemon Twist:1

Recipe: Prepare as per the original, but add a pinch of smoked salt before stirring. The smoky hint turns our Alaska into a campfire story - warm, intriguing, and perfect for those can't-resist-another-sip moments.

Elderflower Alaska


  • Gin:2 oz
  • Yellow Chartreuse:0.5 oz
  • Elderflower Liqueur:0.25 oz
  • Orange Bitters:2 dashes
  • Lemon Twist:1

Recipe: Adjust the Yellow Chartreuse to allow room for the elderflower's floral whispers. Stir together and prepare for a bouquet of flowers in your glass, turning each sip into a springtime frolic.

Berry Alaska


  • Gin (infused with berries):2 oz
  • Yellow Chartreuse:0.75 oz
  • Orange Bitters:1 dash
  • Berry Syrup:0.25 oz
  • Lemon Twist:1

Recipe: Infuse the gin with berries for a colorful twist. Add a dash less of bitters to balance the sweetness of the syrup. This variant is like a walk through a berry patch, whimsical yet sophisticated.

In case you forgot basics how to make Alaska

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

Insert the spoon into the glass until it touches the bottom. Keep the back of the spoon against the inside wall of the glass, and stir in a smooth, circular motion. The goal is to swirl the ice and ingredients together without churning or splashing.

Learn everything on how to stir

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Alaska

What is the best type of gin to use in the Alaska cocktail?

A gin with a botanical flavor works best in the Alaska cocktail, the botanicals blend nicely with the Yellow Chartreuse. However, the choice of gin can greatly influence the overall taste of the cocktail; so feel free to experiment with different types to find your personal preference.

Why is it called the Alaska Cocktail; is it popular in Alaska?

The origin of the name 'Alaska Cocktail' is somewhat unclear. While it might seem logical to assume it's popular or originates from Alaska, historical evidence suggests that's not the case. The most likely explanation is that its name is a nod to the icy, cold landscapes of Alaska, capturing the cool crispness of the drink.

Is there a non-alcoholic version of this cocktail?

Yes, a non-alcoholic or 'mocktail' version could be made by substituting the gin and Yellow Chartreuse with non-alcoholic spirits. Non-alcoholic gins and herb flavored syrups could mimic the flavors of their alcoholic counterparts.

Is this cocktail sweet or savory?

The Alaska cocktail is more on the herbal and slightly sweet side due to the Yellow Chartreuse. The gin brings a crisp, dry flavor to the cocktail, which balances the sweetness.

Is the Alaska Cocktail typically a summer or winter cocktail?

Part of the appeal of the Alaska Cocktail is its versatility. While it can be enjoyed year-round, its citrusy undertone and refreshing gin base may make it more appealing in the summer, whereas the herbal notes from the Yellow Chartreuse can be comforting in the winter.

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