Sloe Screw: Start With the Base and Go From There

Sloe Screw Cocktail
Courtesy of S&C Design Studios
  • Total: 3 mins
  • Prep: 3 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 1 cocktail (1 serving)
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
174 Calories
0g Fat
3g Carbs
0g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 1 cocktail (1 serving)
Amount per serving
Calories 174
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 1mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 3g 1%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Protein 0g
Calcium 3mg 0%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

The sloe screw (commonly misspelled "slow" screw) is a popular orange juice and sloe gin highball that is incredibly easy to make. If you can mix up a screwdriver, this drink's the same thing, except there's no vodka (that is an option, though). It is definitely the most popular sloe gin cocktail and a fun retro drink.

The cocktail comes out of the late 20th-century bar scene when drinks were sweet, fruity, and often had suggestive or sometimes inappropriate names. It's fun though, and quite tasty, with the sweet taste of sloe berry liqueur against tart, acidic orange juice and makes a nice brunch cocktail.

There's also a whole line up of sloe screw cocktails that add things like brandy, Galliano, rum, and tequila. If you ever have a hard time remembering the ingredients in those, pay close attention to the names. There's always a clue that points to another popular drink from that era.


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. In a highball glass filled with ice, pour the sloe gin.

  3. Fill with orange juice.

  4. Garnish with an orange slice.

  5. Serve and enjoy!

Recipe Variations

  • You can modify this recipe by adding 3/4 ounce of vodka and cutting the sloe gin to the same measurement. Some people enjoy gin rather than vodka.
  • The sloe comfortable screw pours 1 ounce each of vodka and Southern Comfort, 1/2 ounce of sloe gin, and is filled with orange juice.
  • For a sloe comfortable screw against the wall, you'll pour 1 ounce each of vodka, Southern Comfort, and sloe gin, fill with orange juice, then float Galliano on top. ("The wall" refers to the Harvey Wallbanger, which Galliano is famous for).
  • You might be sensing a theme with the names if you guess that the sloe comfortable Mexican screw against the wall adds tequila. For this one, pour 1/2 ounce each of vodka, Southern Comfort, sloe gin, and tequila, fill with orange juice, then add a Galliano float.
  • The most complex and boozy of the lot is the sloe comfortable screw between the sheets. To make it, combine 1/2 ounce each of vodka, Southern Comfort, sloe gin, rum, and brandy, then fill with orange juice. (The name refers to the popular rum and brandy cocktail, between the sheets.)
  • Peach schnapps comes into play in the sloe comfortable fuzzy screw against the wall. In this version, pour 1/2 ounce each of vodka, Southern Comfort, sloe gin, peach schnapps, and Galliano (float it if you like), and fill with orange juice. ("Fuzzy" refers to the peach schnapps in a fuzzy navel.)

How Strong Is a Sloe Screw?

Sloe gin can be bottled anywhere between 15 percent and 30 percent ABV (30 to 60 proof). This will be a very light drink with an alcohol content around 7 percent ABV (14 proof) when made with the strongest sloe gin. While it's similar to high-point beer, that will go up, of course, if you add liquors for the variations. The majority of those will still not be considered tough drinks.