Grape Ape Cocktail Recipe

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Grape Ape Nutrition Facts





Alcohol %:12%

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 Grape Ape cocktail is a fruity and vibrant drink that gained popularity in the 1970s. It was named after the famous Hanna-Barbera cartoon character, Grape Ape, who was a giant purple gorilla. This cocktail is perfect for those who enjoy sweet and colorful drinks, and it is often served at parties and celebrations.

  • The Grape Ape was popularized in the 1970s
  • Named after the cartoon character, Grape Ape
  • Perfect for parties and celebrations

How Grape Ape Tastes?

The Grape Ape cocktail is a sweet and fruity drink with a vibrant purple color. It has a refreshing and tangy taste, with a hint of sourness from the lemon-lime soda. The combination of grape vodka, blue curaçao, and cranberry juice creates a unique and delightful flavor.

Interesting facts about Grape Ape

  • The Grape Ape cocktail is named after a 1970s cartoon character
  • The vibrant purple color of the drink is achieved by mixing grape vodka, blue curaçao, and cranberry juice
  • This cocktail is often served at parties and celebrations


  • Grape vodka: 1.5 oz(45ml)
  • Blue curaçao: 0.5 oz(15ml)
  • Cranberry juice: 2 oz(60ml)
  • Lemon lime soda: 1 oz(30ml)
  • Ice: As needed
  • Garnish: Lemon Wheel:1

A few good options for Grape Ape are:

  • Grey Goose
  • Belvedere
  • Khor
  • Smirnoff

Learn everything on which Vodka to choose

Grape Vodka

It provides a grapey punch to the cocktail. Skimping on this and your Ape might not seem so Grape after all. Too much, and you'll overshadow the other flavors. Without it, you lose the signature flavor.

Alternatives: Try infusing plain vodka with fresh grapes.

Mary Mitkina

Blue Curaçao

This gives our Ape its blue hue and adds a bitter orange undertone. Without it, the drink would be a bit too one-dimensional, missing that citrusy zing.

Alternatives: Triple sec with a drop of blue food coloring can mimic the taste and color.

Alex Green

Cranberry Juice

It balances the drink with its tartness and color. Too little and the drink might be overly sweet; too much and it becomes too tart.

Alternatives: Pomegranate juice could work as an interesting twist, giving it a different kind of sharpness.

Emma Rose

Lemon-Lime Soda

Adds effervescence and sweetness. Taking this out would make the drink flatter both in taste and appearance.

Alternatives: Plain soda water with a splash of lemon and lime juice for a less sweet version.

Mary Mitkina


It keeps your concoction cool and refreshing. No ice? Prepare for a lukewarm experience that may not be as enjoyable.

Alex Green

Lemon Wheel

It's not just a garnish; it provides a hint of zesty aroma when you take a sip. Omitting it wouldn't be catastrophic, but why miss out on the extra flair?

Emma Rose

Recipe. How to make Grape Ape Drink

  1. Fill a highball glass with ice
  2. Add 1.5 oz of grape vodka
  3. Add 0.5 oz of blue curaçao
  4. Add 2 oz of cranberry juice
  5. Top with 1 oz of lemon-lime soda
  6. Stir gently to combine
  7. Garnish with a lemon wheel

Pro Tips

  • Use fresh lemon-lime soda for a more refreshing taste
  • For a more vibrant purple color, add a drop of purple food coloring
  • Serve in a chilled glass for the best experience

Perfect Pairings


  • Cheese Platter: The fruitiness of Grape Ape pairs fantastically with an assortment of cheeses, especially those that are rich and creamy.
  • Fried Calamari: The crispness and slight acidity of the cocktail cut through the fried exterior for a refreshing contrast.


  • Glazed Ham: The grape and cranberry flavors complement the sweet and savory glaze on a juicy ham.
  • Grilled Chicken Salad: The citrus notes in the cocktail add a fresh burst that pairs well with a light, healthy salad dressing.


  • Lemon Tart: The sharp citrusy notes play well with the cocktail's lemon-lime soda.
  • Chocolate Fondue: The sweetness of the fondue and the bitterness of the chocolate create a delightful mix with this fruity drink.

Non-alcoholic Pairings

  • Sparkling Water with a Splash of Cranberry: This keeps the palate clean and complements the cranberry in the cocktail.
  • Grape Juice & Soda Mocktail: Non-drinkers can enjoy a similar flavor profile with this mocktail version.

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What you could change in Grape Ape

  • Grape Vodka: You can use regular vodka and add a splash of grape juice or grape-flavored liqueur
  • Blue Curaçao: You can use triple sec or orange liqueur and add a drop of blue food coloring

Explore all drinks starting with G here

And of course - twists🍹

Cucumber Grape Ape

  • Replace lemon-lime soda with cucumber tonic
  • Add a few slices of cucumber

The cucumber adds a layer of refreshment and sophistication. The drink will feel more spa-like and less sweet.

Spicy Grape Ape

  • Add a small slice of jalapeño to the shaker
  • Shake with the cranberry juice and grape vodka

The heat from the jalapeño brings a surprising twist, contrasting with the sweet fruitiness.

Midnight Grape Ape

  • Swap blue curaçao for blackberry liqueur
  • Use black grapes for garnish

This dark cousin brings a brooding intensity to the party, with deeper berry notes twisting the original flavor profile.

In case you forgot basics how to make Grape Ape

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 Grape Ape

What type of occasions is the Grape Ape cocktail suitable for?

The Grape Ape cocktail, with its vibrant color and sweet taste, is great for casual gatherings, beach parties, themed parties or any festive occasions.

What types of glasses can I use to serve the Grape Ape cocktail?

Though highball glasses are most commonly used to serve the Grape Ape cocktail, it can also be served in Collins glasses or any other glasses that can retain the effervescence.

How can I make a non-alcoholic version of the Grape Ape cocktail?

You can make a non-alcoholic Grape Ape cocktail by replacing grape vodka with grape juice or a grape-flavored soda and omitting the blue Curaçao.

What other garnishes can I use for the Grape Ape cocktail?

Apart from the lemon wheel, you can also use lime slices, cherry, or even an umbrella for a fun and festive look.

Can I make larger batches of the Grape Ape cocktail for parties?

Yes, the Grape Ape cocktail can easily be scaled up to make larger batches for parties. Just make sure to keep the ratios of ingredients the same.

Can I premix the Grape Ape cocktail and refrigerate it?

Yes, you can premix the Grape Ape cocktail without the soda and ice, and refrigerate it. Add the soda and ice just before serving for the best taste.

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