Jul 062019

Apricot Lavender Sage Shrub

apricot lavender sage shrub in a bottle with lavender apricots and sage on blue background

A sweet and sour, herbaceous apricot lavender sage shrub plus a bright apricot shrub gin spritz to make from it.

Jun 152019

Blueberry Basil Shrub

Blueberry basil shrub in bottle with 2 cocktails in front

A tangy blueberry shrub with garden basil and balsamic for an exciting summer beverage that can be served with (or without) alcohol.

Jun 082019

Red Wine Rhubarb Syrup

Candied rhubarb, rhubarb wine syrup, syrup on ice cream

A tasty red wine and rhubarb syrup for pouring on ice cream or waffles or to use in drinks. And some crystallized rhubarb for good measure. With spring nearly ending I was intent on making a rhubarb syrup to share. But I wanted something different than my typical fruit and spices or herbs. Well I did just pick up a wine club shipment. And who doesn’t like a red wine reduction? I suggest a fruity red for this rather than something dry. I used one of our California fruit bomb cabernets. And because I had a bit of extra rhubarb,…Continue Reading

Apr 032019

Is It Spring Yet? – a non-alcoholic cocktail

Mandarin, fennel, ginger cocktail

Early spring and the last of winter flavors meld in this mandarin, fennel, and ginger non-alcoholic cocktail. Very refreshing and there’s no reason not to have two! *A quick little news blurb before we get to the piece you are actually interested in: I’m going to commit to start posting twice a week regularly – Tuesdays and Saturdays. Check back regularly for more recipes, or sign up for the weekly newsletter over in the sidebar!* I have a couple more citrus recipes to sneak in before mandarin season is done for everyone else. Here, they’re still the primary fruit we…Continue Reading

Mar 032019
Dr. Blossom cocktail side view

A subtly spiced pomegranate liqueur that is delicious added to some soda water or in a bright cocktail – like this Dr. Blossom recipe! Alright, the last of the promised winter syrups and liqueurs (for now): pomegranate spice liqueur. For those just joining us, you can read the rest of this saga in Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3. Part 1 has most of science notes about making liqueurs. There’s not a lot to say about this recipe, besides that it was born out of an “I have pomegranate arils in the fridge that need to be used up”…Continue Reading

Feb 022019

Winter Syrups and Liqueurs: Part 3 – Mandarin Thyme Syrup

A bright and herbaceous syrup with a hint of cardamom and a vivid non-alcoholic cocktail aptly dubbed the Painted Lady to refresh yourself in a well balanced way. For those just joining us in this series, you can find the continued saga of my December syrup and liqueur making in Part 1 and Part 2. Welcome to Part 3: Mandarin Thyme Syrup. Another non-alcoholic entry that works brilliantly mixed with some soda water (perhaps add a squeeze of fresh lime or a thyme sprig garnish?) or in a cocktail. To include the non-alcohol imbibers, I’ve got a “mocktail” recipe to…Continue Reading

Jan 302019

Winter Syrups and Liqueurs: Part 2 – Coffee Spice Syrup

A rich coffee flavored syrup with hints of cinnamon, pepper, and other spices. Plus a Citrine Coffee cocktail highlighting the amazing coexistence of coffee and citrus. I was having difficultly writing a good article for this syrup and then I got distracted by improving my photography. I took the plunge and asked for some advice from other food bloggers and I have gone a little overboard implementing the suggestions. Better backgrounds, more interesting props and dishes and most of all, better light. I even created a DIY light box that is working very well. I now have a huge backlog…Continue Reading

Jan 012019

Winter Syrups and Liqueurs: Part 1

A more aromatic limoncello variant, incorporating black tea and peppercorns for a winter sipper that’s perfect when the weather is excessively blustery. To make use of the bounty of lemons the tree provided this year – and just because I wanted to – I started making some liqueurs this year. But since it’s me, I couldn’t stick to a simple limoncello or even doing one recipe at a time. So we got a lemon and black tea liqueur and a pomegranate spice liqueur (I had some pomegranate arils that need to be used). But then I realized I hadn’t done…Continue Reading

Sep 142018

Bittersweet Jewel

I was going to make tequila variant on a negroni the other day to accompany grilling some chicken (a nice mustard 5-spice marinade I need to work on perfecting). Unfortunately I discovered that we did not have enough Campari. But I still wanted something bitter and vegetal, so time to come up with something different. I kept with the light smokiness of the tequila to complement the grilling and the mustard. A little bit of Campari kept the bitter notes present on the mid palate and the Yellow Chartreuse added to the herbal notes while putting a little sweetness to…Continue Reading

Aug 162018

Rummun – A Cocktail

I really like using competitions as a way to spark creativity in cooking an cocktail making. Unfortunately, most cocktail competitions require that you are working at least part time at a regular bar establishment – which rather excludes me these days. What I really hate with these competitions is when they don’t announce this fact until the application process. I even went looking for the competition rules and regulations to determine if there was this kind of limitation before I started designing for the competition. But I suppose all is well that ends with a good cocktail. While many people…Continue Reading