Skip to main content

The transfusion drink is our favorite golf cocktail — here’s how to make it

Vodka, grape juice, ginger ale, and lime. What's not to love?

Transfusion cocktail

Sure, golf is a great game. It’s a wonderful way to spend an afternoon in the sun, even if your last name isn’t Woods, Scheffler, Mickelson, or Spieth. If you don’t take it too seriously (and don’t spend all day stuck in sand traps), it’s a fairly stress-free leisure activity. The best part? After you finish the back nine, you can head to the clubhouse for a much-deserved cocktail. That is if you didn’t spend the whole eighteen holes downing Miller Lites.

And while there are countless famous golf course cocktails like the Azalea and the always popular Old Fashioned, we don’t think a day at the golf club is complete without a refreshing, flavorful Transfusion.

What is a Transfusion?

Maja Petric/Unsplash

Thankfully, this drink has nothing to do with blood of any kind. But, while its official history is a bit murky, many believe this drink received its name because of drinkers’ use of it as a hair-of-the-dog type hangover cure. When you see what the ingredients are, you’ll understand why.

This simple, fruity, refreshing cocktail is made with only four ingredients. They are vodka, ginger ale, grape juice, and lime juice. Really, that’s it. If ginger ale isn’t your thing, you can opt for lemon-lime soda or simply sparkling water or seltzer.

What you’ll need to make a Transfusion

Absolut Vodka
Tim Rüßmann/Unsplash
  • 2 ounces of vodka
  • 2 ounces of ginger ale
  • 1 ounce of grape juice
  • 1/2 ounce of fresh lime juice

The Transfusion recipe steps

Soheb Zaidi/Unsplash

1. Add ice to a shaker.
2. Add vodka, ginger ale, grape juice, and fresh lime juice to the ice-filled shaker.
3. Shake vigorously to combine.
4. Strain the ingredients in an ice-filled Rocks or Old Fashioned glass.
5. Add lime wheel and Concord grapes as garnish.

Bottom line

Glen Carrie/Unsplash

While the classic Transfusion is vodka, ginger ale, grape juice, and fresh lime juice, the best thing about this drink is its versatility. You can swap out ingredients to shape it into a drink that fits your palate best. If ginger ale is a little too spicy for you, try soda water, seltzer, or any other type of sparkling water. You can also add cranberry juice or other fruit juices to add new dimensions to the cocktail.

Also, make sure you don’t go too cheap on the ingredients. Don’t reach down to the bottom shelf for the vodka, even though it’s masked mostly by the other flavors. You don’t want to harsh, foul-tasting base. Also, get a well-made ginger ale (or sparkling water), flavorful grape juice (Concord is a good choice), and fresh-squeezed lime juice. If you want to get the most out of this drink, freshness is key. It’s fresh, fruity, and perfect for a day on the links or an afternoon grilling in your own backyard.

Editors' Recommendations

Christopher Osburn
Christopher Osburn is a food and drinks writer located in the Finger Lakes Region of New York. He's been writing professional
Drinks 101: What’s a brand ambassador (and are any worth paying attention to)?
What's a brand ambassador? Here's what
Pouring alcohol. Barman working at night and wearing uniform pouring alcohol into glass with ice

First there were influencers, now the brand ambassadors. These important figures -- equal parts drinks personalities and marketing muscle -- personify the companies they work for. And in an era of close consumer scrutiny and cherishing brand character substance as much as product turnout, brand ambassadors are more important than ever.

What's a brand ambassador? Fair question. The title has been a bit muddled as of late, especially with celebrities entering the fray. And while on the surface it can feel just like marketing 101, there's a unique component in the drinks industry that makes it all the more appealing.

Read more
This is how Bobby Flay makes store-bought barbecue sauce taste amazing
Make your sauce taste homemade with this easy trick
Person grilling

Love him or hate him, Bobby Flay is admittedly one of the more talented and famous chefs of our time. Between his countless television shows and cookbooks, the popular chef has amassed quite a dedicated fan following, looking to him for culinary inspiration in just about any dish. This time of year, the grilling expert is well-loved and sought after for his delicious barbecue tips, tricks, and recipes, and we've stumbled across one that we can't wait to try this summer.

In a YouTube video posted by The Food Network, Flay admits that while making homemade barbecue sauce is certainly a great option, not everyone has the time or desire to do so. He then goes on to explain that by simply adding a few key ingredients to a high-quality store-bought sauce, everyone's favorite summertime condiment can be elevated to whole new levels of finger-licking deliciousness.
The secret ingredients

Read more
Make the perfect summer meal: Our favorite sides for burgers
And one burger ingredient that you absolutely must try deep fried

We all love a deliciously juicy, straight-off-the-grill, steamy, meaty burger. To be sure, no other dish sings of summertime more than this beloved classic, and we can't get enough now that it's officially grilling season. But, just as no leading star is complete without her supporting cast, or no artwork complete without its gilded frame, no burger is complete without a delicious side dish.

These are five of our absolute favorite summertime sides that will perfectly complement your burgers this season.
Roasted tomatillo, corn, and black bean salad

Read more