The Madras Is A Fruity Vodka Cocktail Perfect For Any Time Of Day

A refreshing, fruity cocktail is a must when you've got a sunny day by the pool ahead of you — or you simply want to bring the vacation vibes home during the colder months. Either way, you'll find the perfect year-round sip in the Madras.

A cousin of the popular Cape Codder, the Madras is a simple concoction of vodka, cranberry juice, and orange juice. It's a similar favorite that was highly embraced among the plaid-wearing preppy circles of the 1980s. As it happens, the Madras is said to be named after Madras plaid, a patterned textile that originated in a coastal city of India and made its way to wardrobes in the United States.

Despite its fancy name, the drink's easy method and common ingredients make it a go-to for home mixologists. Plus, its light and fruity flavor serves as an ideal choice at any hour of the day, from brunch 'til dinner. Thanks to the OJ, it's sweeter and more citrusy than a straight up vodka cranberry, tempering the bite of vodka and making it more palatable if you dislike the bitterness of cranberry juice.

Consider it a dynamic alternative to a mimosa, or a nightcap that packs a flavorful punch. And if you happen to have guests over, the Madras is always a surefire crowd-pleaser — so it's a recipe every host should keep up their sleeve.

How to make a Madras cocktail

Since vodka is a bar-cart staple, and orange and cranberry juice are common household mixers, you might already be stocked with the ingredients needed to mix a Madras. If not, purchase a bottle of your favorite vodka, grab the fruit juice, and prepare to set sail for Madras-land.

The typical Madras recipe calls for a shot of vodka, three parts cranberry juice, and one part orange juice. You can easily tweak the ratios to fit your personal tastes, but here we'll outline the measurements to start with.

If you have a cocktail shaker on hand, pour in 1 ½ ounces of vodka, 1 ounce of orange juice, and 3 ounces of cranberry juice. Throw in some ice, seal it up, then shake well. Strain into a highball glass over ice. If you don't have a shaker available, you can simply mix the ingredients together directly in a highball glass with ice. Top it off with your preferred fruity garnish (both a lime wedge and orange wedge work well) and voilà — you've got a boozy vacation in a glass.