Art of the Cocktail: Cherry Brandy

Art of the Cocktail, Beer & Cocktails, Cook, DIY, Drink, Make, Try This at Home, Weekend Project

I have big plans to make the most of the bright, ripe cherries I’ve spotted at the farmers’ market lately. And while I’m bringing seasonal produce to my kitchen table, why not bring it to the bar with homemade cherry-infused brandy?


Spirits with the word “infused” in the name can sound intimidating, but they’re not just for artisanal producers anymore. Flavoring alcohol with fruits, herbs and spices is an age-old technique that’s gaining popularity.

To make your own Cherry Brandy, all you need are a jar with a lid, your favorite brandy and some fresh cherries. Once it’s ready, substitute Cherry Brandy for regular brandy in cocktails and enjoy the refreshing fruit flavor.


Cherry Brandy


1 cup cherries, lightly crushed

2 cups brandy


Have ready a clean, widemouthed 1-quart jar and its lid. Rinse the cherries and pat dry. Pour the brandy into the jar, add the cherries and gently push down to submerge them. Wipe the rim clean and seal tightly with the lid. Store the jar in a cool, dark place, shaking it every day.


After a week, taste the brandy. If it hasn’t reached the desired flavor, shake and taste it every day or two until you’re satisfied with the flavor. Strain the brandy mixture through a fine-mesh sieve or paper coffee filter and discard the cherries. Return the strained brandy to the jar and seal tightly with the lid. Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 months. Makes 2 cups.

3 comments about “Art of the Cocktail: Cherry Brandy

  1. Strawberry-Sage Pisco Sour

  2. Glen Hyman


    Why do you have to refrigerate after you strain out the cherries? will it not last forever in the alcohol?
    please let me know as I am going to try this but was going to bottle it and keep it for years….or less :)

    1. Williams-Sonoma Post author

      Hi Glen, it’s true that brandy, which is often around 80 proof, might be safely stored at room temperature after being infused. However, to be on the safe side it should be refrigerated because this recipe doesn’t call for sterilizing the jars and lids and creating a vacuum seal, or heating the ingredients, which means that there’s a slim chance bacteria could be present in the jar with the finished product, if even on the rim or seal of the jar. Also, occasionally infused liquors can develop off flavors from being exposed to heat and light, and storing it in the fridge will help prevent this from happening. So make this recipe and enjoy it within a few months — perhaps you can serve cherry sidecars at your next cocktail gathering?


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