Bourbon / Ice

Berry Bourbon Bramble

07.14.15

Berry Bourbon Bramble // The Shared SipThe lazy dog days of summer are upon us! Kyle and I have been saving our pennies for the many many wedding expenses (t-minus 74 days!), which means our summer has been a quiet one. It’s forced us to think a little bit more about how we can spend time without spending a ton of money.

I bought a cheap cruiser bike on Craigslist (a temporary solution until I can invest in a long-term road bike) and I’ve been trying to use it in lieu of a car whenever I can. There’s something about bicycling through town on a nice summer day that just makes you feel like a little kid again.

Berry Bourbon Bramble // The Shared SipAlong with bike rides, we’ve taken some pretty drives, started to tackle the crazy urban garden behind our apartment, and even found a local rec pool to soak up some sun. It so tough to come up with cheap or free activities to do (especially with all the amazing bars and restaurants in the Bay Area), but I think it’s made me appreciate smaller moments that don’t require fancy reservations or a newly-deposited paycheck—and has got me thinking about how I want to spend my time in a larger sense. I’ve realized I’m actually happier spending the afternoon reading a library book in the park than I am dressing up and going to a $300 dinner in San Francisco. I prefer a long hike with Kyle to of-the-moment show tickets any day. Quiet versus loud. Simple over complicated. Serendipitous, not forced.

Berry Bourbon Bramble // The Shared SipIt reminds me of a quote I read this weekend: “Gratitude reminds us that what we have is enough.” So that’s where my focus is this summer: the small moments of unexpected, unplanned, unfussy joy. Free moments that were somehow graciously given to me every day. What more can I ask for?

Berry Bourbon Bramble // The Shared SipOk, maybe one thing: This berry bourbon bramble. This is one of those cocktails that begs for the sprawling, wrap-around front porches of the south. The ones lined with wicker loveseats that you could spend hours in listening to your parents and grandparents regale you with stories you’ve heard dozens of times, and others you can’t believe you’ve never heard before. It’s a cocktail meant to be sipped with a side of laughter and a big sigh of happiness.

While the cubes make for a fun presentation, the blueberries could instead simply be muddled with the blackberries—a simple alteration when you just want your darn bourbon, already. Build, imbibe and enjoy.

Berry Bourbon Bramble // The Shared Sip____________________

Berry Bourbon Bramble
makes 1 cocktail; build each individually

  • 1.25 oz bourbon; I used Heritage Distilling’s Elk Rider Bourbon
  • .75 oz St. Germain
  • .5 oz simple syrup
  • .5 oz lime
  • 1 oz blackberry juice (muddled and strained)
  • soda water
  • blueberry ice cubes (freeze in 2 parts – adding blueberries with each water addition)

Assembly

Fill high ball glasses with the blueberry ice cubes; add blackberry syrup. Add all other ingredients, except soda water, to a shaker filled with ice; shake until cold, then strain into the glass. Top with soda water.

 

 

Uncategorized

Stateside Summer Shandy

07.02.15

Stateside Summer Shandy // Beer Shandy // The Shared SipIn case things were getting a little too fancy around here, I thought I’d bring us back to a place of unfussy beverages. Specifically: Budweiser. Honestly, if you even pretend to not enjoy an ice cold Bud every now and again, you’re a god damn liar. This watery concoction of low-grade hops and barley will quench a summer thirst in way a Manhattan or martini never will. All hail cheap, mass-produced beer!

Stateside Summer Shandy // Beer Shandy // The Shared SipWhile I like a Bud Light all by itself on occasion, a shandy is the perfect way to add a twist to a plain ol’ can of beer. Plus it’s super easy.

Stateside Summer Shandy // Beer Shandy // The Shared SipI took the easy way out here and bought limeade from the store, but you can totally make your own if you’re feeling ambitious. I wanted this drink to appeal to the sometimes lazy (me) and often unsophisticated (me) crowd. Selfish, I know.

When you’re out picking up your 4th of July haul for the BBQs and celebrations the weekend has in store, grab a bottle of lemonade or really any juice or sparkling beverage and make yourself a shandy. It’s the patriotic thing to do. Happy Birthday, America!

Stateside Summer Shandy // Beer Shandy // The Shared SipStateside Summer Shandy

  • 4 oz sparkling limeade – I used Trader Joe’s, but you could also make one by mixing lime or lemon juice with soda water and a bit of sugar
  • 8 oz beer – I used Budweiser but any light beer will work
  • .5 oz tequila (optional)
  • lime wedges or wheels

Assembly

Fill a tall beer glass or pint glass with ice; fill with limeade or lemonade, add tequila if using, and top with beer. Garnish with a lime wedge or wheel.

Gin

Raspberry Lime Rickey

06.20.15

Raspberry Lime Rickey // The Shared SipHappy Father’s Day, Dad! Can you believe that you’ve put up with me for a daughter as long as you have?! Me neither. Even though I’m not a parent yet myself, I can imagine that for every moment of joy you’ve felt, there have been five moments of frustration, exhaustion, worry and overwhelm.

But in spite of those moments, you’ve continued to guide me in the direction of a happy and fulfilling life. And even when you thought I wasn’t paying attention, I want you to know I was. The lessons you were imparting weren’t going in one ear and out the other, at least not entirely. If your words had been simply swept away with the wind as you spoke them, I wouldn’t be who I am today. So, Dad, I want you to know: This is what I heard when you thought I wasn’t listening.

Raspberry Lime Rickey // The Shared Sip____________________

When you cheered me on through frightened tears learning to swim, I heard: Be brave; you can do this.

When you grounded me for the first time, I heard: Learn from your mistakes; don’t repeat the same ones twice.

When you introduced me to the big city, I heard: Never stop exploring; the culture around you is one of your greatest teachers.

When you coached me late night after late night as I drafted my college essays, I heard: Put in the hard work now and the rewards will follow.

When you encouraged me to keep a journal, to join the yearbook club, to pursue magazine publishing, to start this blog, I heard: You are more creative than you give yourself credit for; honor that creativity.

When you hugged me at the airport, as I was about to move to New York City alone, with only a hope and a prayer, I heard: Fly! Take risks, and live fearlessly.

When you sent me endless newspaper clippings about innovation and entrepreneurship, I heard: Think big, dream bigger. I believe in you.

When you visited me on the East Coast, and walked with me through the city, I heard: I’m proud of you for building a life you love.

When you gave Kyle your blessing of marriage, I heard: You’ve picked a man I trust to take care of you. I believe in the two of you.

When you say nothing at all, I hear: I’m here for you. Now and always.

Love you, Dad.

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Raspberry Lime Rickey // The Shared SipFor Father’s Day, my dad sent me a cocktail request (of course he did—as you may have gathered from the above, he likes to make his opinions known!). He wanted me to recreate one of his favorite childhood drinks, the Raspberry Lime Rickey. He grew up drinking these in old-school soda fountains around Boston, and has had a hankering for them ever since he moved to the West Coast, many years ago. He warned me to “Keep it simple! Don’t try anything fancy like those purees you use!” so I set out to adapt the original recipe in the most authentic way possible. Hope you like it, Dad!

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New England’s Famous Raspberry Lime Rickey
makes 1 cocktail; build each individually

  • .5 oz raspberry syrup
  • .5 oz raspberry liqueur – I used St. George’s but Chambord would work as well (No liqueur on hand? Feel free to double the syrup instead!)
  • .75 oz gin
  • 1.5 oz fresh lime juice
  • soda water

Assembly

Fill a highball glass to the brim with ice. Pour the syrup, liqueur, gin and lime juice over the ice. Give a good stir, then fill with soda water. Garnish with a lime wedge and enjoy!

Barware notes: The highball glasses are actually iced tea glasses from World Market, as is the glass bottle. The small cutting board is from IKEA. The fine mesh strainer can be found at most home stores or Amazon.

Boozy Eats / Brunch Cocktails / Coffee Liqueur

The Tipsy Penguin

06.16.15

The Tipsy Penguin // The Shared SipBreakfast and booze. Was there ever a better pairing? It’s right up there with macaroni and cheese, PB and jelly, Carrie and Big, Netflix and rainy days. Who doesn’t like their orange juice topped with a little Prosecco, their peach puree accompanied by a shot of vodka? Sometimes you just need an extra kick to ease you into the day, amirite?

The Tipsy Penguin // The Shared SipCoffee has long been used as a vessel for alcohol consumption, and rightly so: Its bitterness is the perfect match for sweet liqueurs and caramel-y liquors like bourbon. I also noticed a rad new menu offering at my local Peet’s, called the Black Tie, and set out to adapt it.

The Tipsy Penguin // The Shared SipI added in this amazing NOLA coffee liqueur by St. George Spirits, which offers just the right amount of booziness without overwhelming the other elements of the drink. I also skipped the chicory syrup but used a coffee with chicory for the added bitterness. It’s perfect over ice for the summer months, but I think it would also be stellar hot, ideal for cozy-ing up with during the cooler months.

The Tipsy Penguin // The Shared SipI love my coffee with a sweet something, so I made a batch of macarons and spiked the ganache with the same coffee liqueur, in an effort to tie everything together. Coffee and macarons: another perfect pair.

The Tipsy Penguin // The Shared SipSo when the weekend rolls around (or, hey, the 3pm slump—no one has to know), spend a few extra minutes creating the perfect cup o’ joe. If drinking at 10am is wrong, I don’t want to be right.

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The Tipsy Penguin

  • 1 oz sweetened condensed milk
  • 6 oz cold-brewed coffee; this one with chicory adds extra bitterness to offset the added sweetness of the liqueur and condensed milk
  • 2 oz coffee liqueur; I used St. George Spirits’ NOLA Coffee Liqueur
  • 1 oz half + half

Assembly
Pour the sweetened condensed milk into a glass, then fill with ice. Pour cold coffee over the ice, followed by the coffee liqueur, followed by the half + half. Give a good stir. Top with fresh whipped cream and coffee grounds.

I like to eat mine with a straw and a spoon, so you can get all that delicious condensed milk from the bottom. It sort of reminds me of an affogato. So yummy.

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Classic Macarons with Spiked Chocolate Ganache
I use this amazing guide from the Pastry Pal for the macaron shells. I know the process can seem daunting but if you follow the recipe to a T, you’ll get great results.

For the ganache, I used the basic recipe in that same guide: I brought 3/4 c. heavy cream to a boil, then poured it over 8 oz good dark chocolate (I used Ghirardelli 60% cacao chips). Allow it to sit for a minute to melt the chips, then give a good stir. Once combined, stir in 2 oz coffee liqueur. If it seems a little runny, stick it in the fridge for 15 minutes to harden a bit – just be sure to keep an eye on it so it doesn’t firm up too much!

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Further reading: Want to know more about coffee cocktails? Check out this fascinating article on how Irish Coffee came to America. San Francisco’s Buena Vista Cafe makes, arguably, the best one in the country.

Barware notes: The mason jars can be found at most stores, but I got mine at World Market. The small pitcher, bowl, and spoon were all thrift finds. The napkin is also from World Market.

Campari / Classic Cocktails / Gin / vermouth

The Beegroni

06.06.15

The Beegroni // The Shared SipIt’s Negroni Week! This nationwide annual event is actually coming to an end tomorrow, but I wanted to make sure I got in a post on this cocktail-menu staple. Truthfully, the Negroni has never been my favorite drink. It can be intensely bitter and overly spirit-forward, to the extent that sipping on a poorly-made Negroni is reminiscent of sipping on a shot of cheap liquor.  I also don’t order them as often as I should, so I’m certainly no expert in determining what deciphers a great Negroni from a sub-par one.

The Beegroni // The Shared SipSo, being the Negroni amateur that I am, I decided to go forth and try to adapt the classic to something that might suit my palate. It’s crazy how many adaptations there are of this cocktail—it seems really nothing is off-limits. But I really wanted to include the classic ingredients, which are the epitome of a Negroni: gin, sweet vermouth, and Campari.

To that, I added an elderflower-honey syrup from Pink House Alchemy, a cool syrup/shrub/bitters producer out of Arkansas. My sister was in Bentonville for their film festival, and Pink House Alchemy was on scene serving up some delicious cocktails. My sister started raving to the bartender, Emily, about my blog (my sis is basically my agent, considering how often she tells strangers about The Shared Sip—it’s the cutest), and Emily was generous enough to send a couple of bottles home with her, including a bottle of their Beena syrup.

The Beegroni // The Shared SipI only added a half ounce to the traditional Negroni proportions, but I think it really mellowed it out and made it a more pleasant sipping cocktail. You could also totally add more syrup if boozy cocktails aren’t your jam.

I think this is the start of a new relationship between the Negroni and myself. I’m vowing to give it a chance when I spot it on a cocktail menu, and to scout out the best version here in the Bay Area. The sacrifices I make for this blog!

A side note on vermouth: I’m trying to learn more about vermouths and the depth they add to cocktails. The simplest understanding of vermouth is that it is an aperitif, or an aromatized wine. An aromatized wine is a wine that has been infused with botanicals that add flavor and color. Vermouth is also a fortified wine, which means another spirit has been added, often brandy. There is so much more to it, but those are the Cliffs Notes of the Cliffs Notes.

I’m seeing vermouth being used in so many cocktails these days, so I know I need to educate myself around the topic. My local bottle shop even offers a class on vermouth, which I need to get into stat. In this Negroni version, I used Cocchi (pronounced co-key), which is a producer of vermouth in Asti, Italy rather than the traditional sweet vermouth made in France, like the classic Dolin variation. This variety was recommended to me by the aforementioned bottle shop (those guys are seriously awesome), and I am itching to get my hands on some other vermouths so I can test them side-by-side in various drinks. I think vermouth of one of those spirits that once you master, your understanding of mixology as a whole expands so much.

There you have it! A mini-history on the Negroni and vermouth. Now go whip yourself a drink already. Happy Negroni Week!

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The Beegroni
makes 2 cocktails

Assembly
In a mixing glass filled with ice, add all ingredients. Using a bar spoon (tutorial here), mix until cold, about 30 seconds. Strain equally into two lowball glasses filled with ice; garnish each with an orange twist.

Barware notes: My mixing glass is from Umami Mart; my glasses, I think, were stolen from my parents (thanks Mom and Dad!)

Prosecco / Sparkling Wine

Raspberry Sorbecco

06.01.15

Raspberry Sorbecco // The Shared SipAs far as crowd-pleasing, easy-to-throw-together cocktails go, this probably takes the cake. There are only two ingredients needed, and no shaking, stirring or garnishing required: it’s kind of a show-stopper all on its own. Toss a scoop of sorbet in a pretty coupe, top with Prosecco and you have the Sorbecco.

Raspberry Sorbecco // The Shared SipYou can use really any flavor you love, and even experiment with sherberts that add a little extra sweetness and a creaminess to boot. I love Talenti sorbets, but I’m always also on the lookout for great local brands. And that’s it! Serve immediately with a casual hair flip and an “Oh-this? Just a little something I threw together…”

Sorbecco
makes 1 cocktail; build each individually

  • 1 scoop of sorbet, any flavor you like
  • Prosecco or Champagne of your choice; I prefer a dry variety as the sorbet adds plenty of sweetness

Assembly
Scoop sorbet into coupe glass; top with Prosecco and enjoy!

Raspberry Sorbecco // The Shared SipBarware notes: The coupes are thrifted from Ohmega Salvage. The raspberry dishtowel is from IKEA. The ice cream scoop is actually a cookie dough scoop, which you can find at most homewares shops.

Vodka

The Pink Panther

05.22.15

The Pink Panther // Grapefruit Rosemary Martini // The Shared SipOk, so naming cocktails may not be my strongest skill. But, the pink of this drink reminded me of the iconic Pink Panther and it stuck. Luckily, the deliciousness of this cocktail makes up for the silly name.

Grapefruit season is coming to an end in most places, but we’re spoiled here in California as we can basically get any produce we want at practically any time of the year. I’m really looking forward to creating cocktails with my summer favorites—rhubarb, strawberries and melons are on the top of my list—but I wanted to sneak in one last grapefruit-based cocktail while I could get away with it.

The Pink Panther // Grapefruit Rosemary Martini // The Shared SipThis drink stands out for two reasons: 1. The use of this wonderful grapefruit vodka from Heritage Distilling (you can read more about how I came to know them over here). See how the bottle is less than half full? That’s because I made this cocktail for a family dinner last weekend and it was a total hit. My mom was drinking the vodka neat by the end of the night, so that alone should speak for itself. And 2. The use of a rosemary simple syrup. Yep, I’m still on my rosemary kick. The herb just can do no wrong. It adds so much depth and interest to citrus cocktails that can otherwise be a little snoozeworthy. I recommend keeping some on hand in your own kitchen if you don’t already.

The Pink Panther // Grapefruit Rosemary Martini // The Shared SipThis cocktail is easy enough for a Tuesday, but interesting enough for a party. There is no wrong time for The Pink Panther.

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The Pink Panther
makes 2 cocktails

  • 3 oz Heritage Grapefruit Vodka
  • 2.5 oz fresh grapefruit juice
  • 1.5 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1 oz rosemary simple syrup; recipe follows

Assembly
Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake until very cold, about 20 seconds. Strain into a coupe, martini glass, flute or similar. Garnish with fresh rosemary.

Rosemary Simple Syrup

Combine 1 cup sugar, 1 cup water and 3-5 sprigs of rosemary in a saucepan over medium heat. Heat until sugar dissolves completely. Remove from heat and let steep for an hour or more. Makes about 2 cups. Store in the fridge; should keep for at least 2 weeks.

The Pink Panther // Grapefruit Rosemary Martini // The Shared Sip

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Sip + Skim
my favorite finds this week, boozy and otherwise

  • I recently discovered Stella Spoils, a daily “newsletter” that is really anything but—it’s more of a curated digest of cool stuff. Think: eye-candy Instagram accounts, an interesting read, one must-have product and a song you would probably never discover on your own.
  • This summer, I really want to try to grow—and not kill—my own herbs. Those things get expensive! I’m bookmarking this guide from Well & Good to make the journey to herbdom a little easier.
  • If you aren’t already familiar with the Slow Movement, read this Kinfolk interview with Carl Honore, a pioneer in the area. In light of how “busy” everyone is (eyeroll), it’s so refreshing to hear and read about people who are trying to bring lightness and peace to everyday life. “Human beings need moments of silence and solitude—to rest and recharge; to think deeply and creatively; to look inside and confront the big questions: Who am I? How do I fit into the world? What is the meaning of life?”
  • The New York Times exposé on nail salons was so fascinating, and definitely has me thinking I may need to reconsider those $20 pedicures I’ve become addicted to.
  • Elizabeth Gilbert is so much more than the author of Eat, Pray, Love—which has sadly given her a negative rep as a cheesy chick-lit writer. In reality, she’s incredibly funny, smart, gracious and humble, and I cannot wait for her new book Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear to come out this fall. In the meantime, follow her on Facebook (seriously!)—her posts are so thoughtful and have made many of my days.
  • Last weekend I finally made it out to St. George Spirits distillery over in Alameda and had the best time. The tour was so interesting and the tastings were so delicious. I snagged a bottle of their Absinthe, and a few days later Kyle surprised me with a bottle of their Nola Coffee Liqueur (aww). I guess I was pretty vocal about how damn tasty it was when I sampled it! That is definitely going in my morning coffee on Saturday mornings, don’t mind if I do.
PIsco

Pisco Sidecar + What Mother’s Day Means to Me Now

05.09.15

Pisco Sidecar // The Shared SipOver the years, the significance of Mother’s Day, to me, has changed. As a kid, Mother’s Day meant handmade cards and goofy crafts. As a teenager, it meant being reminded by Dad to not be jerk, just for a day. As a 20-something, it meant a phone call from across the country to say, “I love you.” But to me today, as a 31-year-old adult, it means friendship.

How did it take 31 years to get here? I guess it’s because I was busy building a life. The angsty too-cool teenager years. College, blurry but breathtaking, attempting to figure out who I thought I wanted to be. A near decade across the country, still searching for “me”. Embarking on a career. Forming friendships. Falling in love. The million messes and successes in between.

Pisco Sidecar // The Shared SipAfter all that, my mom was here waiting for me, waiting to start the next chapter of our relationship. That’s the great thing about moms: Patience. They sit quietly on the sidelines, cheering along the way, until you slide back into home. Take your time, I’ll be here, I’ve felt her silence say to me so many times.

And finally we are here—no longer just mother and daughter, but friends. A friendship that means time spent together not because you have to but because you want to. It means honest conversations about difficult topics. It means less motherly advice (though there will always be some of that), and more I’m here to listen.

I imagine most mothers look forward to the point in the relationship when the switch is finally made from parent to friend. When she can finally just be her, instead of mom.

Though this friendship has really only started to take shape over the last few years, I love seeing glimpses of her that I couldn’t see in mom. She’s funny, so sassy. She’s incredibly smart, more than she or anyone else gives her credit for. She’s confident in her character, never wavering in who she is. She’s strong, kind, and full of a joy and wonder that you don’t encounter many times in your life. She is, simply, her.

So, Mom: Thanks for waiting out the last 30 years, and for being a great friend to me now. I hope I can be one to you, too.

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Pisco Sidecar // The Shared SipIn honor of my mom, I had to create one of her favorite drinks! My mom love-love-loves a sidecar. Traditionally made with brandy, lemon juice, orange liqueur and simple syrup, it’s a classic. But of course, I had to put a little twist on it!

I didn’t have and brandy on hand, but I did have Pisco, which is a type of brandy—even though doing a little reading made it clear they are certainly not one in the same. Still, onward I went!

I’ve been noticing the use of demerara syrup in a lot of cocktails lately—a brown sugar that has a toffee quality to it—so I subbed that in instead of simple syrup. The result, I think, is fantastic. It has a little extra bite from the pisco, and a subtle caramel essence from the demerara syrup—while still clearly retaining a traditional sidecar flavor profile.

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the wonderful moms out there—including so many of my friends with little ones!—and especially to my mom. I love you.

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Pisco Sidecar

  • 1.5 oz pisco – I used Barsol Pisco
  • 1 oz Cointreau
  • 1 oz fresh lemon juice
  • .5 oz demerara syrup; recipe follows

Assembly
Rim a coupe or martini glass with lemon juice, then demerara sugar. Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice. Shake until very cold, about 20 seconds. Strain into the demerara sugar-rimmed  glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Demerara Syrup
You can find demerara sugar at most gourmet markets; Whole Foods should have it too.

In a small saucepan, combine ½ c. demerara sugar with ¼ c. water. Stir over medium-low heat until sugar is completely dissolved. Store in an airtight container in the fridge. Should keep for about 10 days. Makes about ½ cup.

Barware notes: Coupe glass and small pitcher were both thrifted. I scored the vintage shaker at one of my favorite local antique shops, Lost & Found. Napkin is from Anthropologie.

 

Holiday Cocktails / Tequila

Boozy Mango Agua Fresca

05.05.15

Boozy Mango Agua FrescaI’m completely embarrassed to admit that I had refresh myself on Cinco de Mayo’s significance (I thought it was to commemorate Mexico’s independence, but turns out that’s a common misconception). So if you’re like me and need a quick history lesson: On May 5, 1862, the Mexican army was victorious over the French in the Battle of Puebla—a victory years in the making through the French occupation following the Mexican-American War. Of course, there are a million more interesting details surrounding the holiday, and I’m hardly doing it justice with only a few sentences. But I do feel a little better sipping this cocktail now that I know a bit more about what I’m toasting to this Tuesday.

Boozy Mango Agua Fresca // The Shared SipOf course, margaritas are Cinco de Mayo’s celebratory drink of choice—but I wanted to offer something a little different to spice up your menu this year. Aguas Frescas are another traditional Mexican beverage, and they are perfect for warm spring weather. Throw in a shot or two of tequila and a party drink is born.

I used mango here because I love the color, the sweetness, and its May seasonality. You could use another fruit of your choice—watermelon, cantaloupe, and papaya are great, but feel free to experiment with the fruit you have on hand.

Boozy Mango Agua Fresca // The Shared SipThe resulting cocktail is unassuming, simple, not-too-sweet and perfect to wash down tacos, fajitas, tostadas…or, um, all of the above. Happy Cinco de Mayo!

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Boozy Mango Agua Fresca
makes 1 cocktail; build each individually

  • 3 oz mango puree – recipe follows
  • 1.5 oz tequila – I used Espolon Blanco
  • 3 oz seltzer

Assembly
Fill a rocks glass with ice. Add mango puree and tequila and give a good stir. Top with seltzer and enjoy!

Mango Puree

  • 2 ripe mangoes, peeled, with flesh cut from the rind (about 2 c. of mango – you could probably also use frozen!)
  • ¼ c. fresh lime juice
  • 1 ¼ c. water
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender and mix until well combined. Strain through a fine mesh sieve or strainer; discard pulp. Makes approximately 3 cups.

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Barware notes: My glasses are from a local shop called Nathan & Co., but you can find similar here. The pink plate is from CB2 (the pink is discontinued but the orange is pretty rad!). The napkin is Lilly Pulitzer for Target (now sold out). The small bowl was an estate sale find, but these are similar.

Vodka

Pinemary Mules

05.01.15

Pineapple Rosemary Mules // The Shared SipGuys: It’s May, which means it’s officially unofficial Moscow Mule season! I know mules’ popularity has gotten a little out of hand, seeing as you can surely spot the concoction on most cocktail menus these days. Still, it’s a refreshing drink that is perfect for warm weather—and even better, one that I think lends itself so well to adapting to your tastes and what you might have laying around your kitchen.

The lovely team at Heritage Distilling was kind enough to send over some bottles of their best spirits for me to play around with—no strings attached. I would never write about something I didn’t love, and I knew I would scrap the recipe if it didn’t feel right. Luckily, it did—and here’s why: their ginger vodka is delicious.

Pineapple Rosemary Mules // The Shared SipIt’s not overly ginger-y, which could completely overwhelm a cocktail. I’m not even much of a vodka drinker, but I think this could easily find its way into many a summer beverage. While I sipped, I knew it would be the perfect component to a classic Moscow Mule.

Pineapple Rosemary Mules // The Shared SipThough the ginger vodka already added a fun spin to the classic beverage, I wanted to keep playing with it. Pineapple has been on my brain lately (tiki drinks are ev-er-y-where—I can’t wait to make my own), and I thought rosemary would add an unexpected element to the drink.

This pineapple-rosemary syrup—it’s the real deal. The two flavors compliment each other so well. I could sip it by itself, if truth be told. I won’t, but I could…it’s that delicious.

If you have a chance to grab a bottle by Heritage, do. They’re based up in Gig Harbor, Washington, using natural flavors and locally-sourced ingredients. “Field to flask” is the new “farm to table”—and these guys follow that motto in the creation of all their spirits. Even cooler? The company is majority-owned by women and family operated. That’s pretty rad, if you ask me.

I hope you get a chance to make this variation on the classic cocktail, and experiment with your favorite ingredients at home.

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Pineapple Rosemary Mules // The Shared SipPinemary Mules
makes 1 cocktail; build each individually over ice

  • 2 oz ginger vodka; I used Heritage Distilling (regular vodka will work just fine here too—Heritage also makes one of those!)
  • 2 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1.5 oz pineapple-rosemary syrup
  • 4 oz ginger beer

Add vodka, lime juice, and syrup to a glass filled with ice. Give a good stir. Top with your favorite ginger beer. Garnish with pineapple, lime, rosemary, or any combination thereof!

Pineapple-Rosemary Syrup
makes about 1 cup

  • 1 ½ c. chopped fresh pineapple
  • 3/8 c. sugar, separated
  • ½ c. water
  • 3 sprigs rosemary

Combine pineapple and ¼ c. sugar in a container, cover with plastic wrap, and allow to mascerate overnight in the fridge. Next, mash pineapple in its juices with a potato masher, to allow the fruit to release as much juice as possible. Add juice and pineapple bits to a small saucepan, along with the ⅛ c. sugar, ½ c. water, and the rosemary. Heat on low until sugar has dissolved and flavors begin to meld. Remove from heat and allow everything to steep for an hour or so. Mash the mixture again to release as much juice and flavor as possible. Strain through a fine mesh strainer to a mason jar or something similar. Should keep for 2 weeks.

A note on simple syrups: I make my syrups in small batches, like this recipe calls for, because i absolutely hate to have to throw them out. Plus, they are so easy to make, you can whip up a batch with hardly any foresight.

Barware notes: My Moscow Mule mugs are by Old Dutch. The pineapple juicer is by Lilly Pulitzer for Target (yes, I was one of those maniacs scouring the aisles the day of launch…). The syrup bottle was a thrift find.