The Screwdriver Cocktail Recipe

Posted in Vodka on March 7, 2014


The Screwdriver is one of the most popular cocktails all around the world. It is believed that the first such cocktail was actually stirred with a screwdriver in the absence of anything better and this is how it got the name. No one knows for sure if this story is true or not. However, the first written reference about this cocktail was in the 40s when it was mentioned in the Times.

It can’t get easier than making a Screwdriver. Even a kid can do it although this is obviously not recommended. All you have to do is to mix vodka and orange juice in a highball glass with ice cubes. Given its simplicity, there is no wonder that the Screwdriver is very popular. It is excellent for parties because you can make it in higher quantities before the party starts and it is also great at home when you don’t feel like making something more complicated.

This cocktail is indeed highly popular and it is also known under different names in various countries. As it was expected, it also has lots of variations which are equally simple to make.

As it is the case with all simple cocktails, their secret is not in how skilled you are at mixing drinks, but in the quality of the ingredients you are using. Anyone can stir some vodka and orange juice together, but the final result will be impacted by how good those two ingredients are. Go for the best vodka you can find and for premium brands of orange juice without pulp. If you can make the Screwdriver with freshly squeezed juice, it is even better. Some people like to use flavored vodka for the cocktail. You can choose orange or berry flavored vodka even though some say that even cucumber flavored vodka works great.

How to Prepare the Screwdriver

The cocktail is traditionally served on the rocks in a highball glass.

You need the following ingredients:

  • 2 oz. of vodka.
  • 5 oz. of orange juice.
  • Ice
  • A slice or orange for garnish.

Fill the glass with ice and pour the ingredients in. Stir them well and then garnish with the slice of orange. You can also use a maraschino cherry for garnish.

Screwdriver Variations

There are lots of variations that you can try if you are in for something new. Here are some examples:

  • The Sonic Screwdriver – made with vanilla vodka and blue curacao in equal proportions.
  • The Mexican Screw – it replaces vodka with tequila.
  • The Dew Driver – it replaces the orange juice with Mountain Dew.
  • The Rusty Screw – it uses brandy instead of vodka.
  • The German Screw – it uses schnapps instead of vodka.
  • The Italian Screw – it uses Galliano instead of vodka.
  • The American Screw – it replaces the vodka with bourbon.
  • The French Screw -it uses cognac instead of vodka.
  • The Cuban Screw -it uses rum instead of vodka.
  • The Left Handed Screwdriver - it uses gin instead of vodka.
  • The Screwed Shirley Harrison – it uses absinthe instead of vodka.
  • The Royal Screw – it uses Chambord instead of vodka.
  • The Double Screw – it uses Cointreau instead of vodka.

It might seem that you can actually mix any base ingredient with orange juice and come up with a Screwdriver variation.  This is true because the cocktail is tasty and easy to make, so all cultures have contributed to it.

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