Pimm’s Cup cocktail

Recipe here.

This was REALLY, REALLY tasty and refreshing and has the potential to be a new favorite summer drink.  I muddled a strawberry in with the cucumber, to add a little more sweetness and omitted the rhubarb garnish, because it just seemed a little superfluous.  Frankly, you could probably omit the lemon slice and herb sprigs, too.  They don’t impact the flavor (other than for you to be able to smell them as you sip,) but they do make a pretty presentation.

I took this photo before topping the cocktail off with the ginger beer and forgot to take another one afterward (I was too eager to start sipping, I guess!,) so the finished drink will be a little lighter in color and will fill the glass a little more.  I halved the batch and only made one drink, because Hubby’s not a gin guy and isn’t a fan of sweet-ish drinks.

Corpse Reviver Cocktail

This recipe comes to me from my buddy, Alan Payne, and was inspired by a version from the Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, Virginia.  It is refreshing and light and PERFECT for summer.

Corpse Reviver

2 parts grapefruit-infused vodka (Alan uses Findlandia; I use Absolut.)
1 part Cointreau or Triple Sec
1 part Lillet Blanc
2 parts grapefruit juice (the best/freshest kind you can find)

Shake with ice in a cocktail shaker, then strain into small martini glasses.  Garnish with a maraschino cherry, if desired.

Celery Julep

IMG_8008This drink recipe from the Serious Eats website is from the new cookbook of Matt and Ted Lee.  Not only is this drink quite yummy (for serious fans of both celery and bourbon ONLY,) and are The Lee Brothers fabulous cookbook authors, but their charming mother used to be the Head of School at my childrens’ school.

I was startled by the ELECTRIC green color of the simple syrup, so was expected to be bowled over by celery flavor, but truthfully, the bourbon really takes over once the drink is assembled.  The celery flavor is still there, but it’s definitely mild and not overpowering.  I might recommend a mild-flavored bourbon, rather than the Maker’s Mark that I used, but I don’t know enough about bourbons to be able to recommend one for you.


Colada Morada (hot drink to celebrate Dia de los Muertos)


We made this rich, delicious drink to celebrate Dia de los Muertos and Halloween after Boy learned about it in his school’s Spanish class.  The teacher talked about it so favorably, that Boy came home asking if I could find a recipe.  It is VERY thick and warm, so a little bit goes a long way; serve it in the tiniest (demitasse?) cups you have.  We had some leftover that I froze into small popsicle molds, too – YUM!  Totally different than the intended recipe, but good nonetheless.

Martinez Cocktail

I gave this cocktail a try recently. It looked appealing, because I am developing an unhealthy fascination with really like gin. The maraschino (I used Luxardo brand) liqueur was a little difficult to find, but I eventually found it at Spec’s. This was okay, but it didn’t dazzle me, in fact, I didn’t even finish it. I’m discovering that, for me, gin isn’t meant to be sweet. I like it with really good quality olives as a salty, savory drink and haven’t really found a sweet gin cocktail that I like yet. This cocktail may be enough to finally convince me to stop trying. If, however, you like gin and you like sweet drinks, this might be just the thing for you. I did find the history of the drink interesting (click recipe link to read it); it’s hard to imagine this drink as a martini precursor/namesake (since, in my opinion, the martini is vastly superior), but interesting, nonetheless.

Placebo Mocktail

Before my brother and sis-in-law’s baby shower, we had my brother and sister-in-law over for dinner one night and printed out a bunch of “mocktail” recipes, got a bunch of different juices and ingredients and had a great big taste test. The kids had friends over that night, so everybody got to join in the taste-testing fun. I wanted the Mom-to-be (and any other non-dipsomaniacs) to have something tasty and fun to drink (without alcohol, of course), so I let her choose which one she liked best. She ended up choosing this drink, which we served at the party (it requires a bit of prep, but can easily be made up ahead of time, so is great for a party, just add the seltzer at the last minute), but there were lots of others that we didn’t end up trying on our “taste test” night that I’ve had (set aside in my ever-expanding “Make Soon” folder) ever since. I decided to make this one for the kids tonight, in part to assuage my guilt at turning down Boy’s incessant after-school Jamba Juice requests*.
So, anyway…we decided to try The Placebo mocktail tonight, as a special treat for Boy. The kids LOVED this and it was pretty easy. The only hitch is that you have to have the Monin Granny Smith apple syrup on hand; I don’t really think there’s a substitute (except possibly another flavor – orange? pomegranate? of Monin syrup). There are lots of restaurant supply places and larger grocery stores that carry the Monin syrups, so you might be able to pick it up, depending upon where you live (don’t know if you can get it in Korea, Trish, but I’ll send you some if you want), but I ordered it (in preparation for the taste test) online.
* It’s not that I really have anything personal against Jamba Juice, but there are a few things that bug me about the place:
1) The smallest size drink that they offer is 16 ounces. That’s just ridiculous. No one should be drinking that much super-sweetened juice/yogurt/whatever in one sitting. If you do, it should count for a meal, in my opinion. C’mon…couldn’t you offer an 8 ounce size for kids or people with smaller appetites? My kids never finish a whole one (not that I would want them to!), but I feel so guilty asking them (as I do sometimes) to agree on a single flavor, so that they can split one. It’s not the money that I mind so much when I buy two whole ones, but it just seems so wasteful to buy two whole drinks, knowing that each of them will only be half-consumed.
2) Styrofoam cups? Really? It’s 2009, folks. I know that “styrofoam keeps them colder”, etc, but if you are drinking it in a timely fashion, you can drink it out of a paper or recyclable plastic cup and it will stay cold enough for plenty of time…
3) I can make my kids a smoothie at home (I *always* have plenty of frozen fruit, juice, milk, yogurt, etc. on hand) in minutes, with better (and organic) ingredients, for MUCH cheaper, with a washable glass. Just kinda irks me to buy it, knowing that I have ripe bananas (individually wrapped, thankyouverymuch) in my freezer at home.
Hmmm…in reading this, maybe I *do* have something personal against Jamba Juice…but, the kids love it and so I sometimes cave…

Passion Fruit – Ginger Cocktail

First, I made a ginger simple syrup:
Take equal parts water and sugar, add some peeled, coarsely chopped fresh ginger and boil them together until slightly thickened and syrupy. Let cool to room temperature and then pour into a container and refrigerate overnight. The next day, strain out the ginger. This will keep in the refrigerate for about a week, or maybe 10 days, but if you keep it in a plastic squeeze bottle in the freezer, as I do, you can pull it out when you need it and it will keep indefinitely. It won’t totally freeze (because of the high sugar content), so it can be used almost directly out of the freezer (let is warm up for just a minute or two.)
Second, I put 2 ounces of vodka into a small cocktail shaker.
Third, I just happened to have a pitcher of Welch’s frozen concentrated passion fruit juice mixed up in the fridge (leftover from making this salad dressing), so I added about an ounce of it to the shaker.
Fourth, I added a little squeeze of fresh lime juice (about half a lime’s worth.)
Fifth, I added a little squirt (about a tablespoon?) of the ginger simple syrup.
Add ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Mmmm…tropical and refreshing. Yummy.