The Best Booze To Pair With Green Juice For A Nutritious Disco, According To An Expert

We've all woken up from a night of sin, swearing we'd make up for it — if not karmically, then physically. Life's all about balance, and it's no secret that alcohol consumption takes its toll on our bodies. Those mornings spent hungover in bed or struggling through the day with symptoms ranging from nausea to anxiety and depression are all any of us need as a reminder. But there is a drink that dietitians swear by for curing hangovers: green juice. So why not get a step ahead and drink your booze and your juice together? 

By pairing green juice with a spirit, you can have a disco that's equally as nutritious as it is groovy — and potentially without the gloom of tomorrow's potential hangover looming over you. For pointers, Tasting Table spoke with Santino Carey, the Beverage Manager at the modern Japanese restaurant Mishik in NYC, on the art of making a green juice cocktail — and just like in life, Carey says balance is key. It all starts with taking note of the flavors of your juice and choosing a spirit that complements it. Carey pointed to gin as his preferred choice in earthy and tart green juices. "The botanicals in gin — [starting] with juniper and commonly including cardamom, pepper, lavender, citrus peels, or coriander — are a great complement to a juice that's on the savory side, like spinach and celery." 

But, for something more acidic, he also recommends whiskey. "In particular, I would suggest a bourbon here, as its sweeter notes would do a great job brightening up the acidic and tart nature of the juices," he said.

Green juice can make or break your cocktail

In the wise words of Santino Carey, "Always keep in mind that balance is key when using these juices, as they can either make or ruin a cocktail depending on how they are used." While the chosen spirit does come first, there are other elements to keep in mind, too. For instance, aside from the flavor profile of your green juice, Carey encourages you to take note of its texture. He also emphasizes using a spirit-to-juice ratio that highlights those qualities, rather than overshadows them. While there are versatile green juices (like the one Martha Stewart drinks every morning), that usually depends on your taste preferences and the spirit you choose.

One of the reasons Carey favors gin in his green juice cocktails is because, being a clear liquor, it's easier to balance. "I believe that gin mixes best because it won't overpower the juices, and the herbal notes of the spirit play particularly well with the verdant and earthy tones of the vegetables," he said. While whiskey and bourbon both have inherently deep, sweet flavors that can pair nicely with tart ingredients, brown liquors do prove to be harder to balance in your green juice cocktails — but Carey does offer the assurance that it will pay off if you succeed. 

There is no strict rule here as far as ratios go, not even for Carey. "Play with the ratio of spirit-to-juice to highlight those qualities in a way that works best for you," he says.