Recipe Sleuth: Boozy Milkshakes From Ted’s Bulletin

On the hottest of days, we crave both milkshakes and cocktails. Ted's Bulletin combined them, and we can't get enough.

From left: the White Russian, Grasshopper, and Nutty Professor shakes. Photograph by Chris Leaman

In this oppressive summer heat, ice cream and cold booze are two chilly mood-lifters—and at Capitol Hill’s Ted’s Bulletin, you can get both in one glass. For his "adult" milkshakes, chef Eric Brannon blends vanilla-bean ice cream with vodka and flavored liqueurs such as Bailey’s and Kahlúa, and he gave us the formula for three of our favorites. (Note: these recipes call for 1 ounce of certain ingredients—that’s equal to one shot in most standard shot glasses—but feel free to up the booze to your taste and tolerance.)

For the milkshake that features vodka—the White Russian—Brannon says to save money by using a lower-end brand. Splurge instead on a good vanilla-bean ice cream, such as Edy’s—he says the varieties with beans impart a better flavor than versions that use vanilla extract—and high-end liqueurs. One more thing: Don’t fill your blender more than halfway, and keep your hand over the lid when mixing.

“Otherwise you’ll have the milkshake party all over you,” says Brannon.

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Boozy Milkshakes From Ted’s Bulletin
Each recipe makes 1 milkshake

White Russian
1 ounce Kahlúa
1 ounce vodka, such as Smirnoff
1¼ cups vanilla-bean ice cream, such as Edy’s


1 ounce crème de menthe
1 ounce Kahlúa
1¼ cups vanilla-bean ice cream, such as Edy’s
1½ teaspoons toasted, chopped almonds for topping  

Nutty Professor

1 ounce Bailey’s Irish Cream
1 ounce hazelnut liqueur, such as Hiram Walker or Frangelico
1¼ cups vanilla-bean ice cream, such as Edy’s

For all: ¼ cup whipped cream

Soften the ice cream slightly by leaving it out at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes. Place liquor and liqueur in a blender and top with the ice cream. Blend on medium speed until it’s incorporated, about 1 minute. Pour the milkshake into a tall glass, leaving about an inch at the top for the whipped cream. Top with whipped cream (and, in the case of the Grasshopper, the almonds) and serve.

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Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.