The Dalmatian

Coral-pink and slightly opaque, this cocktail (developed by SAVEUR online editor Helen Rosner) looks demure, but it packs serious heat: bitter and sweet, earthy and deep, with a slow, lingering burn from the vodka and pepper. It’s one of those drinks that makes you look at the glass in wonderment after your first sip.

The Dalmatian The Dalmatian
A tart, bright, and peppery grapefruit cocktail which awakens the senses and refreshes the palate.
Yield: makes 1 cocktail

For the Black Pepper Syrup (makes about 1 1/2 cups)

  • 14 cup crushed black peppercorns
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar

For the Cocktail

  • 1 12 oz. black pepper simple syrup
  • 1 12 oz. Karlsson’s Gold Vodka or other vodka
  • 3 oz. fresh grapefruit juice


  1. Make the black pepper syrup: Place sugar, water and peppercorns in a small pot and bring to a boil, stirring once or twice. Once sugar is dissolved take off the heat and let cool. Leave the peppercorns in the syrup to lend it a stronger flavor; strain them out when it is spiced to taste. Chill.
  2. Make the cocktail: Combine the simple syrup, vodka, and grapefruit juice in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake vigorously for about a minute; strain into an ice-filled glass.