Licorice Cocktail Recipe

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Licorice Nutrition Facts





Alcohol %:24

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 Licorice Cocktail is a delightful concoction that dates back to the early 20th century. It was first created by a renowned bartender named Jack, who was known for his unique and innovative drink recipes. Jack was inspired by the sweet and aromatic flavor of licorice, which was a popular treat at the time. He decided to create a cocktail that would capture the essence of this beloved candy, and the Licorice Cocktail was born. This drink quickly gained popularity among those with a taste for sweet and sophisticated beverages, and it remains a favorite among licorice lovers to this day.

How Licorice Tastes?

The Licorice Cocktail is a sweet, smooth, and slightly spicy drink with a rich, velvety texture. The combination of anise-flavored liqueur and vodka creates a bold and complex flavor profile, while the addition of lemon juice adds a subtle tanginess that balances the sweetness of the drink. The overall taste is reminiscent of black licorice candy, with a hint of citrus and a warming, slightly bitter finish.

Interesting facts about Licorice

  • The Licorice Cocktail was first created in the early 20th century by a bartender named Jack.
  • The drink is inspired by the sweet and aromatic flavor of licorice candy, which was a popular treat at the time.
  • The Licorice Cocktail remains a favorite among licorice lovers and those with a taste for sweet and sophisticated beverages.


A few good options for Licorice are:

  • Grey Goose
  • Belvedere
  • Khor
  • Smirnoff

Learn everything on which Vodka to choose

Anise-flavored liqueur

1 oz of anise-flavored liqueur provides a bold licorice essence, the star flavor of our cocktail. It's sweet with a hint of spices. Too much could overpower the other elements, too little and you might miss that signature anise kick!

Alex Green


1 oz of vodka serves as the neutral backbone, uplifting the anise without stealing the show. Vodka's subtlety is key—think of it as the quiet friend who makes sure everyone else shines. Swap it for a clear rum, and expect a sweeter, more playful profile.

Mary Mitkina

Lemon juice

0.5 oz of lemon juice adds a fresh zesty edge to balance the sweetness. It's like the zingy reply in a witty banter—keeps things lively! Forgetting it might leave your cocktail tasting a bit flat. A swap for lime could offer a tarter twist.

Emma Rose


1 cup of ice chills the ingredients, dilutes the mix to the perfect strength, and helps blend flavors together. It's the unsung hero—without it, you'd just have a room-temperature, overly strong concoction.

Alex Green

Garnish: Lemon twist

A lemon twist is more than a pretty face; its oils add aroma and a whisper of citrus that flirts with your senses before each sip. It's the cocktail's final flourish—without it, the drink would be like a suit without a tie.

Mary Mitkina

Recipe. How to make Licorice Drink

  1. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Add 1 oz of anise-flavored liqueur, 1 oz of vodka, and 0.5 oz of lemon juice to the shaker.
  3. Shake well until chilled and combined.
  4. Strain the mixture into a chilled cocktail glass.
  5. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Pro Tips

  • Shake the cocktail shaker vigorously to ensure the ingredients are well combined.
  • Use fresh lemon juice for a brighter, fresher flavor.
  • Chill the cocktail glass before serving to keep the drink cold longer.

Perfect Pairings

Food Pairings

  • Savory: Mild seafood dishes, like grilled white fish, or shellfish like oysters and clams pair nicely, as the anise and lemon cuts through the brininess.
  • Sweet: For dessert, consider a simple lemon sorbet. The anise's sweetness complements the cold tartness, creating a balanced finish.
  • Cheese: A selection of soft, creamy cheeses such as Chevre or Brie can be pleasantly offset by the cocktail's sharp citrus note.

Drink Pairings

  • Water: Plain or sparkling water to cleanse the palate between sips.
  • Beer: A light pilsner or a wheat beer would offer a refreshing counterbalance without overpowering the cocktail's flavors.

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What you could change in Licorice

  • Anise-flavored liqueur can be replaced with Sambuca or Absinthe.
  • If you don't have vodka, Gin can be used as a substitute.
  • Lemon juice can be substituted with lime juice for a different citrus twist.

Explore all drinks starting with L here

And of course - twists🍹

Black Licorice Twist

Replace anise-flavored liqueur with black Sambuca. Add a splash of cola. The result? A darker, deeper licorice note with a hint of caramel. This one's for the bold at heart.

Mediterranean Breeze

Mix in a dash of herbal liqueur like Chartreuse instead of lemon juice. Pair with toasted almonds on the side. Expect a cocktail that whispers tales of ancient, herb-scented shores.

Citrus Fizz

Top the cocktail with sparkling lemonade after stirring the other ingredients over ice (no shaking). The result is a fizzy, bubbly experience that tickles the palate, perfect for warm afternoons on the patio.

In case you forgot basics how to make Licorice

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

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

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 Licorice

What are the convenient glasses to serve the Licorice cocktail?

A coupe or a martini glass is usually preferred for serving the Licorice Cocktail.

How long does it generally take to prepare Licorice cocktail?

It generally takes about 5 minutes to prepare the Licorice cocktail.

What is the best time to enjoy the Licorice cocktail?

Licorice cocktail is perfect for an evening drink, especially as an after-dinner cocktail.

How can I add more depth to the flavor of this cocktail?

A few dashes of bitters can add a depth of flavor to the Licorice Cocktail.

Is there a non-alcoholic version of the Licorice Cocktail?

Yes, a mocktail version can be made using non-alcoholic substitutes like anise syrup and lemonade in place of anise liqueur and vodka respectively.

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