Let’s face it: the Capital Wasteland or the Mojave Desert or the ruins of the Commonwealth are hardly the best places to go looking for a Martini. Scavengers just have to make do, and that’s when they turn to the well-named Dirty Wastelander.
Now, you can try it too! Follow our recipe below:
The Dirty Wastelander
The ‘original recipe’ Dirty Wastelander is made up of three ingredients: whiskey, mutfruit (pronounced “mute-fruit”) and the ever-popular Nuka-Cola. Mix these together over a campfire and bam: you’ve got a drink that will make you feel stronger, tougher and more charismatic, but will take a big hit to your intelligence. Sounds like my average Friday night in a bottle, to be honest.
The whiskey and Nuka-Cola are easy enough to find real-world equivalents for, but what about the mutfruit? What the hell is that? Well, what we know is that they look like this:
AKA a really ugly version of a blackberry, or perhaps a blueberry. So we’ll go with that.
For what I’m hesitantly calling the ‘Traditional’ Dirty Wastelander (with real authentic chunky bits), follow the recipe below:
- 2 oz whisky
- 8-10 blackberries or blueberries
- Place the blackberries/blueberries in a mixing tin alongside the whisky.
- Muddle thoroughly until the berries release their juice.
- Double strain into a tall glass filled with ice.
- Top up with cola.
- Add straw, consider your life choices and serve.
But I wasn’t quite done with this drink; there’s a lot of potential here, if you can manage to find some slightly rarer ingredients. If you’d prefer to have something a little more refined, try the French Dirty Wastelander instead—perhaps the Rakish Wastelander would be a better name.
The Rakish Wastelander
- 3oz whisky
- 1 oz red vermouth
- 1 oz Chambord
- Angostura bitters
- Add all ingredients to a mixing tin with a handful of ice.
- Stir for 10-15 seconds.
- Strain into a chilled Martini glass.
What do they taste like?
Despite what I may have said earlier, the Traditional Dirty Wastelander was not nearly as bad as I thought it would be. Let’s face it, it’s pretty hard to fuck up a whisky-and-coke, but I was convinced that the addition of some chunky fruit business could do it. Contrary to my expectations, the blackberries I added weren’t lost to the often overbearing flavour of the cola, and the double-straining technique manages to avoid most of the pulp lingering at the bottom of the glass.
Don’t get me wrong; I like a bit of pulp in some of my drinks, such as the The Super Mutant, but the idea of soggy fruit and cola really puts my teeth on edge. I really feel for those poor people of the Fallout universe—they wouldn’t even have a strainer to get rid of the worst of it.
It keeps the heart and soul of the drink without dulling it down with sugar-sweet cola.
The Rakish Wastelander, on the other hand, was a different story. It keeps the heart and soul of the drink without dulling it down with sugar-sweet cola. Every flavour gets its day in the sun (not to mention on the tongue), and the Chambord adds an interesting little twist on what is essentially a Manhattan.
Mine was made with Canadian whiskey, and you can use whatever style you personally prefer; after all, even the suavest of wastelanders have to make do with what they can scavenge. I would, however, recommend trying this with a bourbon to keep those sweet tones nice and bright.
In summary, the Traditional Dirty Wastelander is a whisky-and-coke with a kick of fruit to keep it interesting, while the Rakish Wastelander keeps the best bits of the recipe (the fruit and the sweetness), but dials them down to where you can actually appreciate them fully.