Sustainable cocktail recipes to help you toast Earth Day the right way

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As Earth Day approaches on April 22, we are facing more environmental challenges than ever before. It is up to every industry to do its part for the planet, and spirits are no exception.

While some brands merely pay lip service to the idea of sustainability, a select few are truly making a difference while delivering products of exceptional quality that demonstrate the true meaning of artisanal craftsmanship.

We’ve rounded up some of our favorite brands — some you may be familiar with, and some you may not — but all of them are making the effort to create sustainable products and be good stewards of the land where their products originate. Our list includes a little something for everyone and recipe ideas for each so you can celebrate Earth Day the right way.

Koskenkorva Vodka's The Harvester
Koskenkorva Vodka

Koskenkorva Lemon Lime Yarrow Vodka

$17 750mL on Wine-searcher.com

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37.5% ABV

This very smooth vodka is made in a small village in Finland, where it has been sustainably made since 1953. Koskenkorva a standard bearer for both the resurgence of Nordic spirits and eco responsibility as a way of life.The company collects carbon dioxide from the fermentation process and uses it in greenhouse farming. The company aims for fully carbon-neutral production by 2025 and is a Green Company award winner.

Recipe idea: The Harvester

1.35 oz. Koskenkorva Lemon Lime Yarrow
0.5 oz fresh lime juice
0.6 oz fresh orange juice
0.6 oz simple syrup
4 yellow cherry tomatoes
10 basil leaves
Salt & pepper
Soda water

Directions

Muddle the cherry tomatoes in a shaker with vodka.
Add other ingredients and shake vigorously with ice.
Fine strain in a Mason jar filled with ice, top up with soda water and stir.
Garnish with basil leaves and cherry tomatoes.

Montanya rum Maharaja
Montanya Rum

Montanya Oro Rum

$39 750mL

40% ABV

Hailed as a “connoisseur’s sipper” this incredibly smooth rum is dry with a complex flavor profile including cinnamon, honey, vanilla and the body not dissimilar to that of a red wine. The company is based in Colorado and is a Certified B Corporation, meaning it is recognized for and committed to sustainable practices. It is also a certified plastic neutral product. You can purchase their products on the company website.

Recipe idea: Maharaja Rum Cocktail

Glass: Martini or Coupe
(option: rocks glass, top with soda)

In a cocktail shaker with ice:

1/2 fresh lime, juiced
1.5 oz Maharaja Syrup (recipe below)
1.5 oz Ginger Syrup (recipe below)
3 oz Montanya Oro rum

Directions

Shake vigorously. Strain and serve. Garnish with a floating lime wheel and 3 Cardamom pods. Rim the glass with a combination of Turbinado sugar, powdered cinnamon and nutmeg (or other favorite spices).

Maharaja Syrup

2 1/2 c water
2 1/2 c natural or organic granulated sugar
2 1/2 T whole cloves
7 whole cinnamon sticks
25 Cardamom pods
2 1/2 t whole black peppercorns

Directions

Break all spices into small pieces in a mortar and pestle (do not powder the spices or substitute a powdered version). Place all spices in a dry frying pan and toast until lightly smoking and fragrant (do not burn). Transfer to a sauce pan and add water and sugar. Bring to a boil and let simmer for 45 minutes. Transfer to a jar, refrigerate and chill for 2-3 days before straining off spices.

Ginger Syrup

Fill a 40 oz. Vitamix or durable blender carafé with chopped (but not peeled), fresh ginger root. Add 1 3/4 cups fresh lemon juice, 1 3/4 cups Simple Syrup and 6 fresh mint leaves. Blend until finely puréed. Strain through fine strainer or cheesecloth bag. Refrigerate for up to 15 days.

Maker's Mark Kentucky Buck
Maker’s Mark

Maker’s Mark Whisky

$31 750mL at Drizly

45% ABV

You may be surprised to find such a well-known brand on this list, but his handmade Kentucky bourbon whisky based in Loretto, Kentucky, has dedicated tremendous effort to eliminate all landfill waste, operate an on-site recycling program as well as operating a natural water sanctuary and using solar power for its warehouse operations. In fact, the company is recognized as a Certified B Corporation.

Recipe idea: The Kentucky Buck

2 parts Maker’s Mark Bourbon

1/2 part fresh lemon juice

2–3 whole strawberries, hulled

1 dash Angostura Bitters

Ginger beer

Fresh strawberry for garnish

Directions

Muddle strawberry in a shaker.
Add Maker’s Mark, lemon and bitters and shake.
Strain into an ice-filled glass.
Top with ginger beer.
Garnish with a strawberry.

Mezcal Amarás Ponche Caribeno
Mezcal Amarás

Mezcal Amarás

$52 750mL

40% ABV

This 100% carbon-neutral brand using sustainably grown agave harvested by local farmers. The company’s organic planting program plants seven agave plants for every one harvested, and as much as 20% of each bottle’s net sale is given to promote social and environmental responsibility. You can purchase their products on the company website.

Recipe idea: Ponche Caribeno

1.5 oz Amaras reposado

.75 oz fresh Passion Fruit with seeds (Maracuya) or Monin Passion fruit Syrup

.75 oz lime juice

1 oz Piloncillo (brown sugar) and Cinnamon syrup

Pinch of salt

Garnish:cinnamon stick

Directions

In a shaker, add the ingredients and shake vigorously for 20 seconds. Pour the contents over fresh ice including the seeds for a bold look, or double strain for a clean look. Garnish with a cinnamon stick and serve.

Matchbook Distilling Strawberry Amaro
Matchbook Distilling

Matchbook Distilling’s Strawberry Amaro

$31 750mL

19% ABV

This strawberry Amaro is made on the North Fork of Long Island using local nettle, quassia, jasmine, rose, and nutmeg fruit. Matchbook creates custom spirits for clients, prioritizing science, tradition, anthropology and agriculture. The company isn’t open to the public, but you can visit by appointment, and you can order their products on their website.

Suggested serve

On the rocks, or with a splash of soda and a bright citrus slice!

This article was produced and syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

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Constance Brinkley-Badgett

Constance Brinkley-Badgett is MediaFeed’s executive editor. She has more than 20 years of experience in digital, broadcast and print journalism, as well as several years of agency experience in content marketing. She has served as a digital producer at NBC Nightly News, Senior Producer at CNBC, Managing Editor at ICF Next, and as a tax reporter at Bloomberg BNA.