Mocktails – For discerning non-drinker…

•April 20, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Non-Alcoholic treats

Cocktails don't always need alcohol to impress...

Cocktails don’t always need alcohol to impress…

So I haven’t had the time recently for a post, with the combination of work and other things getting a bit on top of me. That’s all dealt with and within the next few weeks you’ll see this blog get back to its best. This includes all the “cocktails o’clock”, “Product of the month” and general cocktail musing posts you have been used to seeing.

Anyway with my apologies, and spoilers, out of the way let us move onto the point of this post: Cocktails, or more accurately Non-Alcoholic Cocktails.

The inspiration for this post is my brother; he’s been on a bit of a detox since Christmas and stopped his alcohol intake completely (don’t worry I’ve been drinking his share). I admire him for it, although would never attempt such a feat (nor would I tell him that I admire him for it).

This post therefore will represent 3 non-alcoholic cocktails, inspired by my brothers detox, and then also some little tips on how to make them a little more interesting…

The Cocktails;

1)      Green Grape Glacier (cocktails.about.com)

Ingredients;

12 seedless green grapes

4 measures white grape juice

4 measure cold sparkling spring water

Image

Vividly Green, this cocktail is as refreshing as it looks…

Method;

-          Freeze Grapes & then mix 10 of them in a blender with the grape juice until smooth/thick.

-          Pour mixture into a highball glass.

-          Add the sparkling water and stir gently to combine.

-          Garnish with the remaining 2 grapes and serve with straws.

This drink is refreshing, fragrant and perfect for evenings spent watching the April showers. I find that using sparkling spring water instead of plain soda water adds more of a natural taste to the drink. Try using different grapes for slightly different flavours.

Fervent Shaker twist: this drink leaves itself open for the addition of a broad range of spirits, and I find that different spirits result in, unsurprisingly, different tastes… Using Gin creates a crisp refreshing evening drink, whilst Rum results in a more vivid summer spritzer. Then there’s Vodka, which results in the classic refreshing spritzer (although a splash of fresh lemon always helps here) and finally Tequila; which adds a specifically earthy and rather rich taste to the drink.

2)  Green Lemonade

Ingredients;

4 measures Lemonade

2 measures limeade/lime cordial

4 kiwi slices, peeled

¾ measure sugar syrup (agave nectar)

Kiwi/Lime slice for garnish

 

Image

The fizzy nature of this drink sets it apart from your standard mocktails… It looks pretty good too!

Method;

-          Muddle the sugar syrup and kiwi slices in a mixing glass.

-          Add limeade, lemonade and ice and shake well.

-          Strain into a highball glass full of fresh ice.

-          Garnish with a kiwi/lime slice.

This ‘mocktail’ is a bitter lemon style mixture with the kiwi adding its very own special brand of flavour. If you’re a fan of Kiwi, like me, then you’ll love this drink.

Fervent Shaker Twist: This one is easy; it’s built for vodka left right and centre. I worked up a post about the Kiwi inspired Mordor Mule a little while ago and this reminds me of it so much. So yes I’d go for vodka but it may also suit a tequila fan if balanced well.

3)  Spring Fever

Ingredients;

¾ measures lemon juice

¾ measures mango syrup

1 ½ measures apple juice

2 measures blood orange juice

 

Image

Striking as any red drink should be, this mocktail is very fruity and goes down a treat on those chilly spring nights…

Method;

-          Add ingredients into a shaker and shake over ice until the tin ices over.

-          Strain into a Collins glass half filled with crushed ice and serve with straws.

This is a slightly complicated drink in that blood orange has a very specific and almost pungent taste. I’m not a complete fan of this drink and that’s simply down to me preferring Valencia orange juice. However, that aside this drink has a certain feel about it that makes it perfect for those windy yet warm spring evenings. The use of orange & lemon juices also leaves this drink open for the addition of various spirits without a great change in the flavour (excluding those of the alcohol itself if you’re using aged spirits). Vodka is the obvious, albeit dull, choice but rum is the spirit to use if you want to taste some real magic. Using Golden rum (I’d suggest Havana Club Anejo) will add a sense of depth in the drinks flavour as well as the usual aged rum taste.

So there you go, proof that not only are cocktails for people who don’t drink alcohol but that the drinks that seem non-alcoholic only can always be turned into something a little more exciting for those who like their tipple.

But as always remember to drink responsibly, I only ever suggest to add 1-2 measures of alcohol per drink and each measure is roughly 25ml (although sometimes I like to go halfway between the two and use just 35ml).

Notes: Pictures are courtesy of;

Green Grape Glacier – Pinterest

Green Lemonade – MixedGreensBlog

Spring Fever – Festen.dk

Please check out their websites for further information/more fun stuff :)

Cocktails at the BAFTAS

•February 20, 2014 • 1 Comment

Herein are cocktails to inspire the mind, as well as the mouth…

So further to my previous post (yesterday) this post combines the five cocktails served by Grey Goose at the BAFTA’s after party at the Rosewood Luxury Hotel in London, England.

Created by Master Mixologist and Grey Goose global ambassador Joe McCanta these 4 cocktails (as well as Grey Goose’s Signature cocktail – The Grey Goose Le Fizz) have been inspired by some principals that have been a theme this past year, here are what Grey Goose have to say about them:

“The four GREY GOOSE Awards Season Cocktails have been inspired by the themes of ‘Pioneering Spirit’, ‘Unconditional Love’, ‘Futurism’ and ‘Return to Retro’ which are represented by some of this year’s most acclaimed movies, in addition to Grey Goose’s ultimate celebratory cocktail, the Grey Goose Le Fizz.”

These cocktails are a combination of easy to mix and difficult to master drinks that will make you question your own tastes and also why you never thought about trying them before.

Yeah I know you probably didn’t know about them until now, but that’s not the point…

So without further ado, the cocktails of the2014 BAFTAS are:

1)  The Grey Goose Le Fizz

Recipe:

35ml Grey Goose Original Vodka

25ml St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur

20ml Fresh Lime Juice

70ml (top up) Soda Water/Champagne

What better place to start than the cocktail perfect for any celebratory occasion…

Method:

-          Hand-squeeze the lime juice into a tall champagne flute or large wine glass.

-          Add the remaining ingredients and top up with cubed ice.

-          Stir well and serve with a cocktail stirrer.

This cocktail is one of Grey Goose’s favourites, billed as the ‘signature celebratory cocktail’ it comprises of high grade vodka, fresh lime, a French elderflower liqueur and soda water to create something just a little bit special.

This cocktail is Grey Goose’s replacement for a champagne cocktail, and to be honest it works really well. I’m not one for too much champagne so a tasty alternative is always welcome. Should the Soda water be a little too ‘dry’ for your palate then try a splash of lemonade instead – it’ will taste a lot sweeter but it might be more to your tastes…

Grey Goose say:This uniquely balanced cocktail uses soft, floral elderflower and refreshing lime to highlight the smooth, rounded taste of Grey Goose Vodka.”

2) The Martini De La Mer

Recipe:

2 parts Grey Goose Original Vodka

2 sprays Sea Spray Essence

Meaning ‘Sea Martini’ this cocktail is something a little special…

Method:

-          Add the ingredients to a mixing glass and stir gently over ice to chill.

-          Strain into a very well chilled coupe glass.

-          Garnish with micro-shiso, red amaranth and a large caper.

Whilst extremely difficult to replicate, this cocktail is a very swanky deal. Using just two main ingredients this cocktail really does show off both the quality of the vodka and the smoothness of its creation. The garnishes add both to the aroma of the drink as well as the overall pleasure. The trick with this cocktail is to chill the mixture right down. This creates the body and complexity you need to really enjoy it.

Grey Goose say:Inspired by ‘Pioneering Spirit.’ Celebrating a pioneering spirit that overcomes adversity, our signature cocktail receives a maritime makeover. Lightly spritzed with an oyster shell infused ‘sea spray’ essence, the GREY GOOSE Martini De La Mer invokes aromas of the open sea and is beautifully garnished with micro-shiso, amaranth and capers.”

3) The Lower East Side

Recipe:

1 part Grey Goose L’Orange Vodka

2 parts Fresh Squeezed Blood Orange Juice

1 bar spoon Grand Marnier*

A Drizzle of Aged Balsamic (Vinegar)*

Based on the classic Wallbanger cocktail, only brought up to date for the 21st Century…

Method:

-          In a glass filled with cubed ice, build the grey goose & orange juice.

-          Float the Grand Marnier on top and garnish with a slice of Blood Orange

-          Drizzle on the Balsamic for the finished touch and serve with a stirrer.

A great penultimate drink, this cocktail is based on the Harvey Wallbanger and brings it into the new century with its taste- bud-tantalising combination of fresh blood orange, classic French spirits and a splash of the finest Balsamic. Not one for the feint of hearts and certainly not for those with an aversion of the use of Balsamic. This drink is best used to impress at after dinner events and guaranteed to blow the roof of your friends mouths (one way or another).

*the balsamic should be of a high quality to suit the drink, but as long as it is not cheap and nasty it should work. Also the Grand Marnier is one of many orange-brandy liqueurs; feel free to use your favourites.

Grey Goose say:Inspired by ‘Return to Retro.’ A sophisticated twist on the most popular drink of the 60s, the Harvey Wallbanger, this downtown classic is a unique blend of Grey Goose L’Orange, seasonal blood orange juice and liqueur, with a slight drizzle of aged balsamic to give an intriguing gritty bite.”

4) L’Amour Moderne

Recipe:

2 ½ parts Grey Goose Le Citron Vodka

2 parts Fresh Pomegranate Juice

1 part Fresh Pink Grapefruit Juice

1 part Campari (Bitter Italian Aperitif)

1 part Passion Fruit Syrup

¼ part Fresh Lime Juice

Originally a Valentines cocktail, it was so good they kept it on for the after party…

Method:

-          Combine all the ingredients over ice, in a cocktail shaker and shake until well iced.

-          Double strain into a martini glass and garnish with an orange zest.

This cocktail looks the most complicated, but as you can tell from the method it’s a classic mix’n’shake cocktail. But don’t let that take away from its class. This drink was created especially for Valentines and was such a hit they used it again for their awards season selection. Nothing shouts quality cocktail than that résumé.

Grey Goose say:Inspired by ‘Unconditional Love.’ A taste of love in a modern age, passionate but bittersweet, with fresh, fruity notes. This romantic reddish-pink martini perfectly balances rich pomegranate and passion fruit flavours with sharp pink grapefruit and a bitter aperitif, strikingly garnished with orange zest.”

5) The Cosmonaut

Recipe:

45ml Grey Goose Le Poire (Pear)

25ml fresh lime juice

17.5ml domaine de canton ginger liqueur

1 dash cardamom bitters

Space aged and classy; this cocktail has it all!

Method:

-          Build over a single large spherical ice cube in a spherical rocks glass.

-          Garnish by skewering a space-candy-covered grape with a cocktail stirrer and serve.

This cocktail is based on futurism and boasts an all-around Sci-Fi feel. The drink is literally from the future of the cocktail scene. Flavoured vodkas have been around for a little while now, with citrus flavours being favoured over others, but more and more we are seeing different fruity flavours. The Grey Goose vodka used in this cocktail is flavoured with pear and is surprisingly refreshing; making it the perfect addition to this futuristic cocktail.

Try it with a splash of lemonade or if you’re feeling really fancy try using French champagne to really bring it all together. Only a little mind, you don’t want to go to over the top!

Grey Goose say: “A futuristic cocktail, the Cosmonaut is a refined and elegant blend of Grey Goose La Poire, ginger liqueur, fresh lime and cardamom bitters built over ‘planetary’ ice-spheres. Inspired by futurism, the space-candy rolled grape adds some playful glamour.”

stephen-fry-bafta

The BAFTA’s: Making Cocktails Even Cooler…

•February 19, 2014 • 1 Comment
Image

The Bafta’s are host to some of the biggest names in Hollywood… Oh, and the occasional Prince.

Let me be honest, I love cocktails. Any good publicity for cocktails is a great thing indeed, so when I saw the photos on the Grey Goose RSVP facebook page last night my heart jumped for joy.

The annual British Academy of Film and Television Arts awards ceremony has always had an after party for the guests to mingle, photo’s to be taken and of course congratulations/scornful looks to be given to the award winners. And rightly so in my book! And this year was no different; hosted by one of the top end premium vodka brands in ‘Grey Goose’ the event saw star a studded collection of celebrities attend and enjoy what looked like a fantastic evening of glitz and glamour.

Image

The Rosewood Luxury Hotel, London: Perfect for such a fancy soiree…

Now I love a good awards show like this, especially when the deserved actors/actresses win the deserved awards and after they go through the elation (or heartbreak in some cases) that winning & losing an award will bring the very minimum they deserve afterwards is a completely unjudged drink or two.

The hosts: Grey Goose, are an extremely high grade vodka brand from the wonderful country of France and therefore a perfect companion for an award show as renowned as the Baftas.

Serving various cocktails to some of the biggest names in the Hollywood phone directory; this entire after party screamed great publicity for cocktails, not to mention alcohol in general.

Image

Celebrities world renowned share a cocktail or two. Left to Right: Steve McQueen, Dede Gardner, Sari Mercer and the fantastic Chiwetel Ejiofor.

Especially with the bad rap alcohol is getting due to this utterly ridiculous drinking ‘game’ (I use the term game for lack of a better descriptive word – it most certainly is not a game) known as necknomination. It’s a stupid idea survived by stupid people thinking they need to better the person before them, reminding me of the saying: “Whos the bigger fool? He who leads, or he that follows.”

This whole situation is giving anti-alcohol groups an unlimited amount of ammo in an unfair war against something that, in moderation, can actually be of benefit to a lot of people. So I for one am glad this awards ceremony has shown the class alcohol brings to events such as these, not to mention the glorious cocktails supplied by Grey Goose. So whether you’re planning a party for the Oscars (March) or the Emmy’s (august), this cocktail-after-party from this years BAFTAS should provide at least a small amount of inspiration to you all…

With winners like the fantastic Chiwetel Ejiofor and stunning Cate Blanchett this BAFTAS really hit the mark and, if you keep an eye out, soon on this very blog you’ll spy some of the cocktails they were all drinking recipes and all so you too can feel like a movie star; even if it is for only a drink or two.

Next on the Fervent Shaker: BAFTAS The Grey Goose Cocktails (here’s the link)

Image

Check back tomorrow for these great cocktails broken down and shared with you all…

My Sweet Valentine: 5 Cocktails you should be drinking this Valentine’s Day

•February 13, 2014 • 15 Comments

Cocktails: Made, literally, with love…

Cocktails: Making Love a little smoother since, well, forever.

Here below are 5 of the best cocktails you’ll be drinking this Valentine’s Day. Some will open the door for you, others might just slam it in your face; pick wisely and, as always, enjoy in moderation…

Please note: These cocktails are so good you’ll be wanting more and more, so they are best used for the love of your life, and if you’re single why not invite a few friends over and celebrate an argument free life – after all you shouldn’t miss out. Right?!

1) Agave Kiss

Recipe:

2 measures Very Smooth Silver Tequila

1 measure Crème De Cacao

1 measure Double Cream

½ measure Chambord

Garnish: White Chocolate flakes & Fresh Raspberries.

Cream and Tequila: Pefection. The Raspberries add a little love.

Cream and Tequila: Pefection. The Raspberries add a little love.

Method:

- Rim a cocktail glass with the flakes of white chocolate (use some lime juice/water as adhesive)

- Combine the ingredients over ice and shake until

This drink is a mixture of pure bliss with a splash of Tequila.  Blending chocolate, raspberry and tequila with the cream in this cocktail brings out the best of all the different flavours and then finishes it off with a smooth creamy texture that only double cream can supply. Hint: The smoother the tequila the better the overall taste of this drink.

2) Love Potion

Recipe:

30ml Sipsmith Vodka

20ml Sipsmith Damson Vodka

2 fresh strawberries

½ a lime

10ml sugar syrup

35ml Pineapple Juice

20ml Mango Juice

1 shot of strawberry Champagne

Image

Elegant and Sophisticated… Just like the person you’re sharing one with… It’s OK, we don’t judge here!

Method:

- Muddle the strawberries and sugar syrup in a shaker and then add the rest of the ingredients.

- Shake well, over ice, until the shaker ices over and strain into a martini glass.

- Serve next to a shot of strawberry champagne.

This cocktail is a perfect fit for this year’s Valentine’s day; utilising one of the best gins in the world (and the only one distilled in London) as well as some fabulous creativity with the addition of a strawberry champagne shot.

If you can’t be bothered to stay in and make your own then make your way to the ‘Kensington Palace Restaurant & Fish Shop’ this February 14th as this is their valentine cocktail this year.

3) Frosted Rose

Recipe:

25ml Vodka

25ml Orange Juice

25ml Pineapple Juice

50ml Cranberry Juice

Image

Cute & Petite, Just my type!

Method:

- Combine the ingredients over ice and shake well until the shaker ices over.

- Strain into a martini glass and serve well.

This cocktail is one of the lighter options on this list, using only the one measure of spirit – but that’s not to say it’s any less tasty. It’s similar to a sea breeze but with the added exotic flavour pineapple juice brings with it. If you want to tweak the flavours slightly then Peach Schnapps is a good addition (yes so it becomes more like a Sex on the Beach).

4) Cherubs Cup

Recipe:

1 measure St. Germain Liqueur

2 measure Vodka

¾ measure Lemon Juice

¼ measure sugar syrup

3 muddled strawberries

Top Up Rose Champagne

Garnish: halved strawberries

cherubs cup

A sweet little cocktail with a name to suit this special day…

Method:

- Shake over ice and strain into an ice filled glass. Add in some strawberry halves here.

- Top with the rose champagne and garnish with a left over strawberry half.

The cherub’s cup is a cocktail perfect for those summer nights on the veranda, but seeing as the summers in the UK are nothing but a damp squib (no they really are rather damp) this cocktail becomes perfect for those romantic evenings with loved ones, so it kind of makes sense to include it on this list. Using the best the French have to offer (St. Germain Liqueur & Champagne) this cocktail really does spark things up when it comes to a romance. Looking the part and tasting delicious; if you hand your date one of these they will be readily impressed – just make sure they aren’t allergic to strawberries first…

5) Besame (Kiss Me)

Recipe:

50ml El Jimador Blanco (Silver) Tequila

2 lime wedges

5/6 raspberries

Top up Passion Fruit Juice

1 teaspoon Chambord

Image

Besame, quick whilst no-one is looking!

Method:

- Muddle the lime wedges and raspberries in a highball glass.

- Add the tequila, stir and fill with crushed ice.

- Top up with the passion fruit juice and stir well.

- Top up with the crushed ice and float a teaspoon of Chambord on top of the drink.

For an added twist mix, shake the ingredients before added to an ice filled glass.

Aptly named, this drink is a colourful mixture again using tequila. Whilst not known for the abundance of female drinkers, Tequila can be a beautifully balanced spirit (if chosen correctly). Like other spirits the smoother the tequila the better and this drink utilises that fact. Smooth Silver tequila blended with some tropical flavours result in not only a stunning red hue, but also one of the better tasting cocktail on this list.

Cocktails O’ Clock: Grand Tropez

•January 27, 2014 • Leave a Comment
st tropez

St. Tropez Harbour: Beauty is an apt word.

It’s been a little while since I posted, it seems that no matter how much I try and put time aside to publish, something always turns up. Mainly work. I have a week off and what better way to spend it (a great deal of it at least) than trying out cocktail recipes and telling you all about them! – Perfect!

So let’s start with a special one: The Grand Tropez.

It may look familiar to some of you, to those of you who do not recognise it: Congratulations, you’re about to try something very special. FYI if you don’t have Grand Marnier, worry not, turn your hand to a Cointreau Fizz or Splash out with some fancy Triple Sec Spritzers!

Recipe:

50ml Grand Marnier

25ml Club Soda

7ml Lemon Juice

grand tropez

Method:

1. Pour the Grand Marnier and lemon juice in a glass and drop in a single large ice cube.

2. Top up with the club soda and garnish with a twist of lemon peel.

Perfect for an after dinner refresher; this cocktail oozes class and contains a subtle yet refreshing citrus undertone. Again perfect for refreshing the palate after dinner. Failing that it’s always good to be ‘the cool guy who drink grand marnier’ at a party. Try substituting the Club Soda for Grapefruit soda as well as adding 25ml of Silver Tequila and you’ll have a rather strong but fragrant twist on the Paloma.

Warm summers night? Why not try this cocktail over crushed ice with a splash of orange juice?

Iced Grand Tropez Recipe:

50ml Grand Marnier

25ml Orange Juice

7ml Lemon Juice

25ml Club Soda

grand tropez iced

Method:

1. Shake the juices and Grand Marnier over ice until the shaker is well iced.

2. Strain mixture into a large rocks glass filled with crushed ice and top off with a splash of club soda.

3. Top up with more crushed ice (a heaped mound should do the trick nicely) and garnish with an Orange twist. Serve with straws.

st tropez 1

Whichever of the 3 cocktails you choose, they are sure to help you chill out whether you’re at the St. Tropez Harbour, or by the blow up pool in your back yard!

Special Occasion? This calls for a Cocktail!

•January 18, 2014 • 2 Comments

Cocktails for all occasions

pimms no1 & lemonade 2

There are some cocktails out there that are best saved for those big occasions; you know all the weddings, birthday parties and fancy shindigs you are all getting up to! Here in this list are 8 drinks that are best utilised for relaxing nights in with your friends or small cocktail soiree’s.

From simple build-a-spritzer combinations to slightly intricate shaken mixtures this list contains a healthy balance of both – not to mention everything in between.

We’ll start with relaxing events. So these would be times when you have friends over for a chilled out evening either with a film or generally have a good time…

Spiced Whisky Ale

Recipe:

50ml Whisky of your choice

125ml Fever Tree Ginger Ale

whisky ale cocktail

Method:

-          Build ingredients in a glass, over ice.

This cocktail is simple. Just pour the ingredients in a glass and enjoy. And that’s the whole point, relaxing cocktails are about putting a few ingredients together following a simple method allowing you to spend more time with your guests, and enjoy that time too.

New Yorker

Recipe:

50ml Vodka of your choice

125ml Cranberry Juice

Wedge of Lime

Seven Grand

Method:

-          Build in a glass over ice.

-          Either drop in the lime wedge whole, or squeeze it in the drink before dropping it in.

This again is a very simple yet elegant drink. The cranberry juice is a perfect complement for the Vodka. With Smirnoff, Finlandia and other companies bringing out different flavoured vodkas, it might be worth finding one you like and trying it out. Finlandia Grapefruit works particularly well with this drink.

Pimms No.1 & Lemonade

Recipe:

50ml Pimms No.1

100ml Lemonade

Garnish: Orange slice, Cucumber slice, Strawberry, Mint Sprig.

pimms no1 & lemonade

Method:

-          Build the ingredients over ice in a tall glass.

-          Garnish with the above ingredients.

Of course Pimms cocktails are always better prepared as jugs/pitchers but for chilled evenings with friends sometimes a little intimacy is called for. There’s no trick involved in the garnish either, use a swizzle stick and mix the fruit in the drink – not only does this mix the garnishes up, but also mix the drink a bit better!

Spiced Ice-Tea

Recipe:

50ml Captain Morgans Spiced Gold Rum

125ml iced tea

Pinch Ground Cinnamon & Ground Nutmeg.

spiced teas

Method:

-          Combine the ingredients in a mixing glass over ice and stir well.

-          Strain into an ice filled Collins glass and serve with a straw.

This drink is a little more artsy, with the cinnamon and nutmeg making an appearance, but this drink could easily stand a test without them, should you not like the flavours. The iced tea recipe can be a basic recipe, but I find a standard tea works well, maybe an earl grey?

Mahiki Breeze

Recipe:

50ml Mahiki Coconut

10ml Spiced Gold Rum

80ml Cranberry Juice

35ml Grapefruit juice

Garnish: Lime wedge

mahiki breeze

Method:

-          In a cocktail shaker, combine all ingredients and shake well (until the shaker ices over).

-          Strain into a tall glass, half filled with ice.

-          Drop in the lime wedge, or squeeze in if preferred.

Rum and Citrus is an age old combination dating back to when people had the good sense and taste to drink them together. That’s right it’s an awesome mix and you should try this cocktail at your next party to prove my point. The Cranberry & Grapefruit juice compliment the rum and each other well, not to mention the coconut flavour of Mahiki blending in well too. This drink is shaken well before serving so it is both mixed well and chilled.

Gran Cran

Recipe:

25ml Grand Marnier

50ml Cranberry Juice

7ml Lime Juice

gran cran

Method:

-          Shake the ingredients together over ice and strain into a tall glass filled with crushed ice.

-          Garnish with a lime wedge and serve with a straw.

A rather unusual use for Grand Marnier, but a cocktail that allows this fantastic spirit to shine is more than ok with me! Try this after food – it’s perfect for settling your stomach and helping cleanse your palate. Not to mention it tastes pretty darn good.

Archer Cooler

Recipe:

50ml Archers Peach schnapps

50ml Orange Juice

50ml Cranberry Juice

archers cooler

Method:

-          Combine the ingredients in a tall glass, over ice, and stir well to mix.

-          Serve with a straw

Holiday Schnapps

Recipe:

50ml Archers Peach Schnapps

125ml Pineapple Juice

7ml Lime Juice

archers pineapple

Method:

-          Build the ingredients in a tall glass, over ice.

-          Garnish with a lime wedge and serve with straws.

This cocktail is as refreshing as they come, blending the peach schnapps with pineapple juice helps bring back those long forgotten summer holidays of old. The Lime adds a crisp finish to a very refreshing drink. This versatile is perfect for cocktail parties or just quiet nights in.

So there you go, 8 cocktails for you to use at any parties/occasions you deem them relevant. But remember they are best suited for relaxing events; BBQ’s, Soiree’s, and general evenings in with your mates.

N.B.the recipes in this post are from, or inspired by, recipes on www.uk.thebar.com and the pictures are partly taken from the same website as well as others (including this iced-tea recipe from Sensibiliteas). Recipes that differ from those on the first website have been tweaked or changed by myself and myself alone. Enjoy them responsibly folks!

Finding Comfort with a Southern Elixir…

•January 12, 2014 • 2 Comments

SoCo 1

Southern Comfort is one of those liqueurs people either like or dislike – I am of the former affinity.

Whisky based liqueurs, in my opinion, do not get better than this New Orleans superstar; with its’ dominant orange flavours and light-whisky aftertaste it’s perfect for cocktails or sipping neat.

Unfortunately it didn’t make my top 10 liqueurs list last year, but that was only because it was far more renown than at least 9 of the liqueurs featured in that list… Whilst it is rather renown in these parts of the world (Europe) and holds ‘superstar’ status in the USA (New Orleans – durh)…

So here’s the point of this post:

I work in a local supermarket and as you would expect from a typical Christmas time shopper they have questions all about alcohol (that’s where I step in). My colleagues always come and ask me questions about spirits as they know it’s what I’m interested in. This means I get all of the ‘I want something as a present, what do I buy?’ questions. For some reason everyone was after Southern Comfort (the significant reduction due to the special offer (£6 off) may have had a small part to play) but no one knew what to do with it, nor whether they should use the standard 35%vol  SoCo or the Bold Black cherry, which stands at a slightly higher (and surprisingly poignant) 40%.

My advice: Always start with the basics. Yes that means the standard, that’s not to degrade the black cherry as it is rather nice, but I find that sometimes the original works wonders; not to mention introducing you into the flavour Southern Comfort is globally renown for.

So what cocktails can you make with Southern Comfort?

Well it can be simply drank as a sour, with lemon and sugar or as part of an elaborate concoction like the Cherry Manhattan. Whether you prefer SoCo Original or SoCo Bold Black Cherry there’s sure to be a cocktail for you:

1. Slow Comfortable Screw against the Wall

Recipe:

1 measure SoCo Original

1 measure Vodka

1 measure Sloe Gin

3 measures Orange Juice

½ measure Galliano Liqueur

slow comfortable screw against the wall

Method:

-          Combine the first 4 ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake well (until the tin ices over).

-          Strain into an ice filled Collins glass and then float the Galliano on top.

We start here with a bit of a concoction and one a few of you may have heard of, but never actually had. This cocktail takes its name from all of the ingredients and a couple of cocktails:

Slow & Comfortable are references to the Gin and SoCo whilst the Screw is in reference to the Screwdriver cocktail (vodka & orange juice) and finally the ‘Wall’ refers to the Galliano and is in reference to the Harvey Wallbanger cocktail.

Whilst this cocktail can be time consuming with all the individual ingredients but the payoff is something sublime. Whether you’re impressing friends at cocktail parties, or even if you have a BBQ or small chilled out gathering, it’s literally perfect for all of the above.

2. SoCo Hot Apple Pie

Recipe:

1 ½ measures SoCo Original

5 measures Warm Apple Cider

SoCo hot apple pie

Method:

-          Stir the SoCo into the warm cider and garnish with an apple slice.

-          Sip with or without straws, but take care as the cider should be rather hot.

This is a simple recipe, and one for the budding home brewers out there. I’ve seen some recipes out there for mulled ciders but a good quality cider would work just as well. You’ll have to find your own mulled recipes, but here’s one to start you off…

3. SoCo Traditional Cherry Cola

Recipe:

1 measure SoCo Bold Black Cherry

¾ measure Pom, Pomegranate Juice

Top Up Cola

SoCo Cherry Cola

Method:

-          Simple pour technique: SoCo, then the Pomegranate juice and final top up with the Cola.

-          Use ice if you prefer your ‘Cuban’ style drinks chilled.

-          Garnish with a lemon wedge.

This is another simple recipe, and a rather fruity one at that. Great for the ladies as the Pom really adds a touch of fruity-flavour to the cola. This one works best with classic cola, but if you must use diet be prepared for some damage to the overall flavour!

4. SoCo Chocolate Covered Cherry

Recipe:

1 ¼ measures SoCo Bold Black Cherry

¼ measure Dark Crème de Cacao

Method:

-          Combine over ice and stir well.

-          Strain into a well-iced shot glass.

This drink is a great shot to have at parties no matter the weather. It’s warming and sweet but the alcohol really lends itself to the back of your throat. I particularly like its application to the various ‘shot-boxing’ style drinking game, either that or as a small tipple after a Sunday roast.

5. Black Cherry Manhattan

Recipe:

2 ¼ measures SoCo Bold Black Cherry

¾ measures Sweet Vermouth

Dash of Angostura Bitters

SoCo manhattan

Method:

-          Stir together all the ingredients and then strain them into a cocktail (martini) glass.

-          Garnish with a Cocktail cherry and a twist of lemon peel.

So now for a twist on a classic whisky cocktail; SoCo being a whisky liqueur means this can still technically be considered a Manhattan (although many bartenders would argue that). This is simply a cherry flavoured short, but sweet, cocktail. I also have no qualms in stating that without the cherry this drink just doesn’t work for me. The cherry adds a subtle twist onto an otherwise tweaked cocktail and really carries it to another level. Give it a go and if the cherry flavour is too subtle for you; add a splash or two of cherry brandy.

6. Southern Hurricane

Recipe:

1 ½ measures SoCo original

1 ½ measures Sweet & Sour mix

1 ½ measures Orange Juice

1 ½ measures Pineapple Juice

Splash of grenadine

soco hurricane

Method:

-          Shake together these ingredients and strain the mixture into a hurricane glass

Not exactly the most sensitive of drink, considering recent events, but it’s a cocktail under ‘New Orleans favourites’ on the SoCo website – so all is ok, right?! Anyway it’s a very refreshing, tropical tasting drink that really does make it perfect for summer evenings down south. Try blending all of the ingredients together with ice to make a frozen version of this cocktail. Just add a splash more of grenadine to add some colour.

7. Cajun Thunder

Recipe:

1 ½ measures SoCo original

½ measure bourbon

Dash of Tobasco Sauce

soco spicy shot

Method:

-          Shake and strain.

Need a little fire in your life? Does someone in your little band of warriors need their feet grounding? – Well in that case this is the drink for you! The SoCo is sweet, but the Smokey bourbon should quell that, and the Tobasco sauce will be the silent poison (they won’t notice it until it’s too late). Now I do NOT applaud alcohol abuse, but I know all the students out there will appreciate this shooter cocktail (just treat it with a bit of respect, I like to think about how I’d feel if I were tricked into it myself).

8. SoCo Cherry Squeeze

Recipe:

1 ½ measures SoCo Bold Black Cherry

½ measure Orange Juice

3 measures Lemon-Lime soda (7Up/Sprite)

soco cherry squeeze

Method:

-          Build the ingredients in the order they are written.

-          Straw and enjoy.

A great twist on what I’m drinking right now; see no.10, this cocktail mixes together the legendary citrus of Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice with an orange-whisky liqueur – genius. The Lemon-Lime Soda is perfect as the final compliment to an extremely simple to make, refreshing cocktail. Serve over ice, sip and enjoy!

9. Alabama Slammer

Recipe:

1 measure SoCo Original

1 measure Sloe Gin

1 measure Amaretto

2 measures Fresh Orange Juice

soco alabama slammer

Method:

-          Shake all the ingredients over ice until the shaker ices over.

-          Strain into an ice filled Collins glass and garnish with an orange slice and cocktail cherry.

This cocktail is what many consider to be the actual Alabama Slammer, and I’ve seen many a recipe (al different) also claim that title; but for this post the name does its bit. This cocktail combines Sloe Gin, Amaretto and SoCo for a tad strong but very sweet cocktail. The fresh orange juice helps balance it out a little but I find for that something extra try a dash of lemonade or ginger beer, if you’re brave enough.

10. What I’m Drinking Right now: Deep South Steamboat

Recipe:

2 measures SoCo Original

¼ Lemon, freshly squeezed

Top Up Lemonade

soco lemonade

Method:

-          Build drink in order of ingredients, over ice and in a tall glass.

-          Serve with a straw and drink to be refreshed.

This last cocktail on the list is what I’m drinking right now, as I write this post. It’s kind of a twist on bitter lemonade, with the Fresh Lemon juice adding a little zing to the glass. The cocktail itself, although containing 2 measures of a 35% liqueur, is rather light and refreshing. Many call this the Steamboat cocktail (SoCo & Lemonade) so I shall dub this one the ‘Deep South Steamboat’… You can thank me later.

So there you go folks, a long thought out list of 10 Southern Comfort based cocktails… Whether you want a refreshing light spritzer cocktail or a strong shooter this list has something for you all. Hopefully you enjoyed having a look through! Until next time drinkers!

SoCo 2

Please remember to drink responsibly, a few of these drinks are created so you don’t notice the strength of the alcohol – but don’t let this fool you SoCo is a strong liqueur and should be treated with respect. 

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 444 other followers