Yay! Summer is here… The kids are out of school, which means instead of yelling at them to pay attention to Zoom all day I’m yelling at them that they can’t watch more TV. While I love my kids they do make me feel like a need a cocktail fairly often. Since I’m told being drunk all of the time is irresponsible and bad for my liver…bitters and soda is one of my favorite ways to feel like I’m having a cocktail when I should really be drinking more water.
This could not be easier, just seltzer and bitters. I highly recommend getting a seltzer maker, we have an Aarke and I love it. Once you have unlimited seltzer at your disposal start investing in some bitters, try out new and weird flavors. Use them so season your seltzer to taste, and voila you have the grown up version of putting fruit in your water. This can really be as simple as a few dashes of angostura, more or less depending on your taste. Or you can get really creative, and mix and match to create interesting combinations. Some of my favorite are a couple of dashes Scrappy bitters lime with a dash of lavender, or Fee Brothers orange with a dash of cardamon. Staying hydrated has never been so fun.
For me cocktail recipes can come about in several different ways, but this one happened because my husband walked into my studio looked at a bottle and said “you should make a cocktail called Henry David Chareau”. I had to do some research, I am not an expert in Thoreau after all. I learned that, though he was a tee-totaler, he made a mean rhubarb shrub. And so this cocktail was born.
In addition to the Chareau liquor and the rhubarb shrub I decided to go with St. George’s Botanivore Gin. If Thoreau was going to approve of any alcohol it would probably be this one with its 19 botanicals and its bright, herbaceous flavor. The result is a simple three ingredient cocktail that is spirt forward and has an pleasant interplay between the sweetness of the Chareau and the tartness of the shrub. As it turns out aloe and rhubarb get along very nicely.
Henry David Chareau
2 oz. St. George Botanivore gin
1 oz. Girl meets Dirt Rubarb shrub
.5 oz. Chareau Aloe liqueur
Combine in a shaker with ice and shake until chilled. Strain into coupe and garnish with a bit of trashy novel.
Another spring cleaning cocktail for you this week. I really hate throwing things away if I can help it, and I admit that I probably stretch a few bottles a little past their best by date, you know which ones I’m talking about. By the way this doesn’t mean that they’ve gone off, its just a suggestion that they may no longer be at peak flavor. Despite this fact, I would highly suggest keeping your vermouth fresh, and not just because I have been personally victimized by unrefrigerated vermouth. Bad vermouth will ruin a good cocktail. This goes for sweet vermouth, though it does last longer, as well as Lillet Blanc in my opinion. Which means that you need to buy your vermouth consistently in small quantities ,or in the case of Lillet drink it consistently and in larger portions.
While I am perfectly happy to drink Lillet over ice or as a spritz, some times you just want something a little more serious. Based on the classic 50/50 martini combo (gin and vermouth in equal amounts) this is the perfect cocktail for when you want a martini but not the ABV of a martini, and you just are never going to like vermouth that much. Lillet, and one of my favorites, Highclere Castle gin are the perfe
Highclere Half and Half
1.5 oz. Highclere Castle gin
1.5 oz. lillet blanc
Combine in a shaker with ice and shake until very cold. Strain in to a coupe and garnish with a bourbon cherry.
I had an opportunity to experiment with some of the fantastic products, and create a cocktail for Tea Drops for National Beverage Day. Tea Drops are great, and its always a pleasure when a company that I already love approaches me to collaborate. Its especially awesome when the company is as amazing as this one is, loved by Oprah (no brag), they are fair trade, organic, woman led and owned, and American made. Oh yeah and the tea is delicious.
I really wanted to create a cocktail that utilized the tea in the way that its meant to be brewed, so just like when your making a cup of tea with a tea drop, you can just throw your tea drop right into the cocktail shaker. The blueberry Açai white tea has such a great flavor, and I wanted to compliment it with some floral notes. This is also the first time that I’ve experimented with making an air, and while it does take a bit to figure out the correct technique it’s so fun when it works.
2.5 oz. St. George Botanivore Gin
.5 oz. Creme de Violette
.5 oz. St. Germain
.5 oz. lemon juice
1 blueberry açaí white tea Tea Drop
Top with soda water
Combine all ingredients, except the soda water, in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake until very chilled and the tea drop has been dissolved. Double strain into a cocktail glass, and top with Blueberry Açai white tea air.
Blueberry Açaí white tea Air
1 blueberry Açaí white tea Tea Drop
150 ml hot water
2 tbsp sugar
2-3 grams Lecithin powder
Pour hot water over the tea drop and sugar, stir to combine. Let steep for several minutes, and then strain into a large bowl. Sprinkle lecithin powder over top and mix with an electric mixer to create foam. **This does require a bit of experimentation to master a technique that will work for you.**
I’m choosing to look at things through lunettes Roses (rose glasses), and hoping that traveling will soon be in my future. In anticipation I’ve been practicing my French, which is not good despite growing up in a bi-lingual country and being forced to take it in school. I’m proficient enough to be allowed to order in French by Parisian wait staff, but I wouldn’t describe it as conversational. C’est la vie en lunettes roses pour moi!
This cocktail is a very spring inspired riff on a Negroni. Its uses a classic equal parts ratio to combine Amass peach vodka with a French grapefruit liqueur and some Lillet Blanc over ice for a super refreshing and fruity beverage. Pour one of these and imagine your basking in the sun on the French coast.
1 oz. impeachment peach vodka
1 oz. Vedrenne Pamplemousse Rose
1 oz. Lillet Blanc
Combine ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake until chilled, or just pour it in a glass with ice and stir it with you finger Negroni style.
How better to welcome spring and say goodbye to citrus season then with a fresh citrus cocktail? Aptly named, I can’t take credit for this one. my husband created this cocktail for me and it was so tasty that I had to share it with you. This is the perfect way to get rid of those last couple of runty clementines/tangerines/cuties or whatever late season, super sweet, slightly withered citrus you have lingering in your fruit bowl.
This is essentially a riff on a daiquiri, with the addition of the fresh citrus and some Pisco for a floral note. This is a very spirit forward cocktail, and though I didn’t feel the need, if your citrus is not on the very sweet side you might want to add a touch of simple syrup for balance.
1 1/2 oz. Kuleana HuiHui white rum
3/4 oz. Capurro pisco
1/2 oz. lime juice
1/4 oz dry curaçao
Add all of the ingredients to a shaker, mudldle the clementine segments. Add ice and shake until very cold. Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with some peel.
Another addition to the Spring Cleaning series, this time I blew the dust of my bottle of Chareau Aloe Liqueur. This is a super fresh eau de vie made in California with a slight minty finish. Its the perfect modifier to a lot of classic cocktails, much like st. Germaine, there is really no excuse for it to be languishing at the back of my bar.
While you can easily add Chareau to your gin and tonic or margarita, why take the easy way? That being said, this cocktail might be an example of trying too hard. Its not that this was a bad cocktail, its just that it could be better, and I’m not sure how to get it there. But it looked so pretty that I had to post it. Let’s just call this one a work in progress.
2 oz. Amass Impeachment peach vodka
1 oz. Chareau Aloe liqueur
2-3 dashes Angostura bitters
Combine the vodka and Chareau in a shaker with ice and shake until very chilled. Strain into a martini glass and season with 2-3 dashes of bitters.
I have become obsessed with Gucci’s last few seasons, and I can’t get enough of the 1970’s aesthetic, the color blocking and the oversized florals. Since a wardrobe comprised exclusively of Gucci is not really within my budget I thought I would have some fun throwing together some outfits that are inspired by it instead. I paired an over-sized blazer from Everlane belted over an A.L.c. pleated midi skirt to create a modern take on a skirt suit. The slouchy suede Vince Camuto boots and a pair of calypso curvy hoops from Demarson New York keep the outfit from feeling too stuffy.
While it looks like the Tom Collin’s was most likely created almost a century prior, it was very popular during the 1970’s. Originally made with Old Tom gin or Plymouth gin, it turns out there is a whole family of Collins cocktails. There is some dispute that a Collins made with London Dry Gin is actually called a John Collins, or is that with Bourbon? You see the problem. Its undoubtably the simplicity of the the Tom Collins, made even easier with the over-sweetened Collins mixes of the time, that made it such a favorite during the disco fulled ’70's. Bonus points to anyone who can guess where the quote from the title is from!
1 1/2 oz. London dry gin
3/4 oz. lemon juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup
4 oz. club soda
Orange slice and Cherry
Combine all ingredients, except the soda, in a shaker and shake until chilled. Strain in to tall glass filled with ice and top with club soda. Garnish with an orange slice and cherries.
Recently I’ve started using Rent-the-runways unlimited service, which allows you to rent several pieces of clothing or accessories each month. I get to satisfy my urge to shop without having to worry about overflowing my closet or making bad choices, and I get to try out brands for fit, sizing, quality and comfort before I commit. I’ve been looking at this Doen dress for a while now, and when I saw it on the site I knew I had to give it a try. I love it so much I bought it (for 85% off the retail price)!
Okay, there are no lemons in a Pisco Sour, though if that’s what you’ve got go for it. Pisco is a brandy made in the wine regions of Chile and Peru. Its new to me, and it’s nothing like the brandy’s that I’m familiar with. I find Pisco is much lighter, brighter and more fruit forward in flavor. The Pisco Sour is probably the most commonly known Pisco cocktail and its the perfect introduction.
2 oz. Capurro Pisco
1 oz. lime juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup
1 egg white
Angostura bitters for garnish
Place all of the ingredients in a shaker and dry shake until combined, add ice and shake until very cold and frothy. Strain into a coupe and garnish with several drops of bitters.
It’s the second installment of Spring Cleaning, and today I’m tackling the half bottle of Southern Comfort that I’ve had sitting in the back of my bar for so long I can’t remember when or why I bought it. What I do know is that its not my favorite, and I need to figure out a way to make it better. I decide to take my inspiration from southern sweet tea. Keep in mind I’ve never had sweet tea or been to the south, so this is based completely on cliches.
I just happened to have some Oliver Pluff & Co. Blackberry tea from Charleston that I’ve been waiting to do some thing special with, and this seemed like just the thing. I accidentally infused this for about 18 hours, and while it maybe be a bit too astringent for some, I really liked it. This particular tea was lovely, the blackberry flavor is very prominent and really adds to the cocktail. This did end up being on the sweet side so I add lots of ice to the glass. This ended up being a very drinkable, elevated cocktail, and I’m please to report that I have an empty bottle to recycle!
Spill the Tea
2 oz. Black Berry tea Infuse Southern Comfort
1/2 oz. simple syrup
1/2 oz. lemon juice
Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake until chilled and very diluted. Strain into an old fashioned glass filled with lots of ice. Garnish with a lemon wedge.
Blackberry Tea Infused Southern Comfort
125 ml Southern Comfort
1 tsp. Oliver Plum & Co. Blackberry tea
Combine tea and Southern Comfort in a jar or bottle and infuse for 12-15 hours agitating once in a while.