Midori is a bright green melon liqueur that deserves a place in your collection! Here’s more about it and how to use it in cocktails.

Midori

Here’s a unique liqueur that tastes as bright as a looks: Midori! This electric green liqueur was at its highest heights in the 1980’s, when neon drinks were the norm. But today it’s seeing a bit of a resurgence: and we think it’s worth adding to your collection. This melon-flavored liqueur tastes a bit like a watermelon Jolly Rancher, but if you use it correctly it can be seriously delicious. Here’s what to know!

What is Midori?

Midori is an electric green, honeydew melon-flavored Japanese liqueur. It was first released in 1964 with the name Hermes Melon Liqueur. When released in the US in 1978, the name changed to Midori, the Japanese word for green.

Midori became popular in the 1980’s, where it was often paired with sour mix and vodka to make a sickly sweet party drink, the Midori Sour. It got a bit of a bad rap and fell out of a popularity. Today it’s had a bit of a resurgence in cocktails. Use it wisely and it adds a sweet honeydew melon flavor and lovely green color.

What does Midori taste like?

Midori liqueur is very sweet, with a candy-like honeydew melon flavor: think watermelon Jolly Rancher. It’s typically mixed into cocktails instead of drinking it straight.

How much alcohol is in Midori? It is 21% ABV (alcohol by volume), so it has a relatively low alcohol content. Compare it to 40% ABV for spirits like whiskeyrumvodka and gin.

Are there any substitutes? Midori is a unique liqueur that’s worth seeking out. But in a pinch, you can substitute Bols green watermelon liqueur.

Why we like it

Midori has a deliciously candy-sweet flavor that makes a great cocktail when it’s paired with fresh citrus or other liquors. We love it in a modern Midori Sour.

Confession: we weren’t of drinking age in the 1980’s, so we don’t have any of the retro baggage related to this ultra-popular liqueur. While it has since faded in popularity, we think it deserves a revival.

How much does it cost?

Compared to other liquors, Midori is mid-priced. It costs about $12 to $13 for a 375 ml bottle and about $18 to $23 for a 750 ml bottle.

Midori is usually used in cocktails, not consumed straight or as a shot. Here are the most popular Midori cocktails:

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Midori cocktail

Japanese Slipper (with Midori)


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

The Japanese Slipper is a sophisticated sweet and sour green cocktail with notes of melon and citrus. A true stunner!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 ½ ounces* Midori
  • 1 ½ ounces Cointreau
  • 1 ½ ounces lemon juice
  • For the garnish: Cocktail cherry (optional)

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake 15 seconds until cold.
  2. Strain the drink into a cocktail or martini glass. Garnish with a cocktail cherry and serve. 
  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Shaken
  • Cuisine: Cocktails

Keywords: Midori

More cocktail guides

Need more liquor guides? We’ve got them! Here’s all you need to know about home bartending:

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you'll want to make again and again.

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