Holiday Cheer

Before I start sharing the deets of this festive little cocktail, I want to say a quick thank you to everyone who reached out about my post below. It’s amazing to me that people I haven’t spoke to in years reached out and shared their journey – it really meant a lot.

Ok! Now back to our regularly scheduled programming… holiday cocktails!

The week before Thanksgiving I started testing out cocktails and it’s kind of a two-birds-one-stone situation since Thanksgiving and December holidays are so close. The Blackberry pear smash won Thanksgiving (recipe coming soon!) but this little cranberry peppercorn number might slide into first for our Christmas cocktail. 

I have been so intrigued to make a cocktail using pink peppercorns. Pink peppercorns are a dried berry of the shrub Schinus molle, commonly known as the Peruvian peppertree but they don’t have as harsh of a “pepper” taste as say black peppercorns. Turns out, pink peppercorns aren’t even peppers at all! It’s lighter, brighter, and a little pop of spice. 

To begin I made a cranberry “compote” using sugar, fresh cranberries, peppercorns and water. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium high heat and let it simmer down into more of a thick liquid consistency. Remove from heat, and cool. Add 1.5 oz. of the mixture, 2 oz. of Gin (or you can substitute with Vodka) shake, pour and top with your favorite sparkling water!

It’s surprisingly a refreshing, light drink which is a great alternative to everyone’s favorite – spiked nog. Which I didn’t try to make my own, but I’m tempted this season to give it a shot!

 Pink Peppercorn Cranberry Cheer

                                                                    Gin based | makes one cocktail 

  • 1.5 oz of Cranberry Compote Mixture
  • 2 oz  of Gin (I used Hendricks)
  • Top with sparkling water

 

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Pamplemousse & Herbe de Sauge

Are you confused? Don’t worry the title isn’t in english, pamplemousse is just a fancy shmancy name for a Grapefruit, and sage (yes sage) is declicious in cocktails. And by the way, grapefruits are in season from November to May so it’s the most perfect time of the year to whip up a cocktail with pink or red fresh grapefruit juice! There’s something about the Rye Whiskey and the tartness of the grapefruit that makes this cocktail so winter-esq and great for dinner parties, cocktail exchanges or just curling up by your perfectly decorated tree! (But don’t worry, if you’ve found this recipe outside of those months, it’ll still be delicious and you can swap out the Rye for Gin!)

Pamplemousse & Herbe de Sauge | Yields 2 cocktails

  • 2 oz. rye whiskey
  • 1 oz. fresh red or pink grapefruit juice
  • ½ oz. fresh lime juice
  • ¼ oz. agave or simple syrup (you can also make a brown sugar syrup)
  • 2 dashes bitters
  • 1 fresh sage leaf

 

Cocktail Garnish Tip: When using herbs, smack or roll in your palm to release the oils and flavor more vividly from the herb.

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