Drinks

St Germain & Black Currant Martini

 

St Germain & Black Currant (Ribena) Martini

This may be my new favorite cocktail. Seriously. Sweet and flavorful and goes down easy!

I used to drink Ribena (black currant juice) growing up. I think it’s a British thing (my mom is from England), as not many people over here seem to know what it is. It’s delicious. It dawned on me recently that this delicious drink that I enjoyed as a child might now be able to be enjoyed in libation form. And I was right! Try it!

St Germain & Black Currant Martini

Ingredients

1 oz. St Germain
1 oz. Vodka (used Ciroc this time)
1 oz. Ribena (it’s sold in concentrate form)
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
ice
fine sugar, for rim

Directions

Mix all ingredients (except sugar) in a shaker and shake vigorously. Using half of the lemon, rub the lemon juice around the rim of a martini glass and dip in the sugar. Strain the drink into the glass and enjoy!!

 

Blackberry Gin & Tonic + Blackberry Simple Syrup

Friday, what took you so long? Pour me a drink, please.
The hubs is currently at a bachelor “party”. By “party” I mean excursion. By excursion I mean a five-day-vacation in Costa Rica. That leaves me to rodeo the three kiddos by myself for five days (yes, I like to think I’m a good wife too, thank you). I’d like to pretend that after only two days I haven’t already complained of how difficult it is to come home after a long day at work and manage these little rugrats, but I have. To any single mom out there, I salute you because I don’t think I could survive. But that’s what a good drink is for, right? 
I’ve been kicking myself for the amount of fresh fruit I’ve let go to waste recently. I finally got smart and starting freezing the excess or creatively incorporating it into snacks and drinks. I had a couple packages of blackberries sitting in the fridge so before letting them go to waste, I decided to make some Blackberry Simple Syrup (thank you Ashleigh for the simple syrup inspiration!). I love the idea of using a fresh fruit syrup to jazz up a drink (boozy or not). Plus the color of blackberries screams sweet summertime. Of course I paired my syrup with gin… sorry, I love it! I swear I’ll venture out with my next drink… This was the perfect little cocktail to end a long week and kickoff the weekend. I think I deserve it honestly. 
Blackberry Gin & Tonic
Yield: One Drink
Ingredients:
1 1/2 oz. gin (I used Bombay Saphire) 
1 oz. Blackberry Simple Syrup (recipe below)
1/2 oz. Freshly squeezed lime juice
2-3 oz. Tonic water
Blackberries, for garnish
Directions: 
Fill a glass with ice. Add gin, blackberry simple syrup, and lime juice. Stir. 
Top with tonic and garnish with fresh blackberries. 
Drink. Repeat.
Blackberry Simple Syrup 
Yield: Approx. one cup
Ingredients:
6 oz. Blackberries
1/2 c. water
1/2 c. sugar
Directions:
Combine ingredients into a small saucepan. Bring mixture to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer for approx. five minutes. Press the berries against the side of the pan to release the juices. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Refrigerate until ready to use. 

Simple Syrups: Ideas for Making, Storing & Gifting

I am a wee bit obsessive about simple syrups. Lately my husband and I have gotten pretty serious about mixology … it’s one of the few hobbies that we share (opposites attract, right??). It’s so fun to experiment with different flavor combinations – fruits, herbs, bitters, etc. Plus it allows me to use a lot of the herbs I have growing in my garden.  

Simple syrup has to be one of the easiest things to make. Seriously, boxed mac & cheese has more steps than simple syrup does. You simply put equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan and heat until dissolved. There are countless ways to add flavors to the syrup, and I’ve included two variations below, one with lavender and the other with mint. I’ve also had great success with thyme and rosemary.

Simple Syrup Variations

Lavender-Infused Simple Syrup

1 cup sugar

1 cup water
4 sprigs of lavender

Mint-Infused Simple Syrup

1 cup sugar

1 cup water
12 mint leaves

I’ll keep my simple syrup in the fridge for 2-3 weeks. To extend the life, I’ll usually try to freeze some of the batch in ice cube trays, using a small leaf from the infused flavor source to identify the type of syrup I’m freezing. Note that the simple syrup cubes will not get as hard as ice cubes because of the sugar content. 

Simple syrups make great gifts too. It’s homemade, unique and will be appreciated by any cocktail lover. I typically use mason jars to store and gift, with a chalkboard top for labeling and some twine and herbs for decoration. 

Fourth of July Piña Colada Party Shooters

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Friday and happy (almost) 4th of July! Hopefully you’re enjoying a day off of work with family and friends in celebration of our great country. And on top of our freedom to celebrate, who doesn’t love a long weekend?!

For today’s Friday libation I tried something I’ve admittedly never attempted before, a layered drink. I started small with a shooter (though regardless of size, it did take several attempts and combinations before I finally achieved the layered look I was going for AND a drink that tasted delicious). Turns out creating a layered drink is like science… And I hate science. But don’t worry, I did all the dirty work for you. Getting a layered affect in a drink is all about density as it relates to sugar content. The more sugar, the denser or “heavier” the drink. Again, I hate science nor am I a science wizard, so forgive my terminology or lack thereof. The key in my opinion to keeping the layers clean is to use a small spoon or straw to assist in your pouring. If using a spoon, turn it upside down with the tip just above the previous liquid layer, and pour the liquid slowly over the back of the spoon. This will help to not interupt previously poured layers and muddy colors.
As with any shot, I recommend choosing a good quality liquor… And my favorite part of these little shooters is the pineapple star chaser, optional of course but how cute?! Make a tray of these little guys ahead of time and chill until party time.
4th of July Piña Colada Shooters
Makes one shooter

Ingredients:

1/2 Tablespoon grenadine
1 Tablespoon piña colada mix
2 Tablespoons blue G2 Gatorade
2 Tablespoons white rum
Pineapple star cutout, optional
Directions:
In a double sized shot glass, pour the grenadine directly in the middle of the glass. Pour the piña colada mix very slowly down the back of a spoon. Next, again using the spoon, slowly add the Gatorade. Top with rum. Add pineapple to the edge of the glass.
Drink. Repeat. (But not too many times!)
Cheers to the 4th of July!
Stephanie