Cocktail: Bubbly Jack Rose

I'm spending the last couple of days of 2017 trying to balance relaxing and being productive. Having slow morning and getting brunch. Movies dates, playing video games and taking long baths. Cleaning around the house and getting the Christmas stuff put away. Working on recipes and blog posts. I'm hoping this is the creative refresh that I've been needing lately and I'm hoping to kick off 2018 with calmness and positive energy. The dream.

We also need to kick off the new year with a little bubbly because we just have to. Here's my take on a classic Jack Rose (which is Applejack, citrus juice, and grenadine) but we're switching in pomegranate juice for a winter twist and adding champagne for a little bit of bubbles. 

Bubbly Jack Rose

Makes one drink

1 oz Applejack
2 oz pomegranate juice
juice from a lime quarter
top with champagne
pomegranate seeds, lime wheel & lemon wheel (optional)

Add pomegranate juice, Applejack, and lime juice to a cocktail shaker with ice and shake. Strain into a coupe glass and top with champagne. Garnish with pomegranate seeds, lime wheel and lemon wheel.

Cocktail: Boozy Blueberry Lemonade with QC Malt

I know a boozy lemonade seems a little premature, being that it's only February. But I'm tired of 40 degree weather and not knowing what coat to wear. My plan is to encourage warmer days and spring weather the only way I know how: with a cocktail. And I've partnered with QC Malt to make something light, refreshing, and a perfect winter pickmeup.

This recipe is simple, but does require making some blueberry syrup. This syrup recipe, once strained, make enough for 4 or 5 cocktails. And if you've never tried QC Malt Lemon Shrub or Old Dutch, they're worth getting your hands on it. These malted hard sodas are refreshing and easy to drink by themselves, but also serve as great mixers in cocktails.

Boozy Blueberry Lemonade with QC Malt

Makes one drink

Blueberry Syrup:
3 cups blueberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 1/2 oz vodka
1 1/2 oz blueberry syrup
3 oz QC Malt Lemon Shrub
1/2 oz lemon juice

Make the blueberry syrup: Add blueberries, water, lemon juice, and sugar into a small saucepan over low heat. Whisk frequently until the sugar dissolves, about 5 minutes. Increase to medium heat and bring to a gentle boil, stirring often, and cook for 15 minutes. Pour mixture through a strainer, pressing lightly through with the back of a spoon, and refrigerate until chilled.

Make the cocktail: Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add vodka, lemon juice, and blueberry syrup. Shake vigorously. Pour into a glass over ice and top with QC Malt Lemon Shrub. Stir and garnish with a lemon slice. 

This post was sponsored by QCMalt. All opinions and recipes are 100% my own.

Booze-Lover Gift Guide

Thanksgiving is over and I'm ready to be in full-blown Christmas mode. Christmas shopping has started. I'm itching to take my tiny pink Christmas tree out of the box. I want to look at Christmas lights and wander around Rittenhouse Park and look at the decorations. 

This year I put together a few gift guides that focus on different things I love (and conveniently all begin with Bs): Booze, Beauty, and Baking. This week we're looking at gifts people the Booze-Lover or Party Host/Hostess in your life. I wanted these guides to focus on gifts under $35. Most of the items are very affordable and can be thought of as an add-on to a larger gift or something to stick with a gift card. Cheers!

  1. Brass-Dotted Barware. Gold and polka dots? Sign me up! Would be a sweet gift to add to a bottle of wine or a 6-pack of fancy beer.
  2. Belvoir Pressé Gift Set. All wrapped up and ready to go. This cute set would be a great gift for a party host/hostess during the holidays.
  3. Luxardo Maraschino Cherries. Great for someone who already has a bar cart set up. A way to gussy up an Old Fashioned.
  4. Colonial Spirits: A Toast to Our Drunken History. Written by Philadelphia's own Steven Grasse (Hendrick's Gin, Art in the Age, Tamworth Distilling), this book is great if you know someone who's interested in American history and the history of alcohol. An easy read, it's filled with historical recipes and tales of how booze built this country. Loved reading this book.
  5. Threshold Marble & Wood Coasters Set of 4. An easy gift for the person who has everything or is maybe hard to shop for. Simple, but really on-point design-wise.
  6. Hummingbird Glass Straws. An upgrade from the paper straw. These glass straws would be a great addition to a glassware set or a bottle of booze.
  7. Carry On Cocktail Kit: Champagne Cocktail. These cocktail kits are just so freaking adorable. A gift for the traveler.
  8. Real Dill Bloody Mary Mix. Sampled this at a recent Terrain event and it was mighty delicious. A quirky gift, but something fun for the bloody mary lover.
  9. Stainless Steel Cocktail Shaker with Gold Finish. There's obviously a love of gold going on in this gift guide. A standard shaker with a golden finish. Maybe paired with that gold bare tool set? Or that muddler?
  10. Marble & Wood Muddler. I always like gifts that are something practical, but slightly upgraded or nicer than you would buy yourself. This muddler fits the bill.
  11. Carry On Cocktail Kit: Bloody Mary. Again, just too cute. Attach a liquor store gift card and you're good to go. 
  12. Fee Brothers Bar Cocktail Bitters Set of 6. For someone who loves to experiment with cocktails at home. 
  13. Disco Ball Tumbler. I feel like this tumbler was made for me. A really fun gift for someone who just screams fun and party. Or someone who spends a lot of time on the internet because these babies have been posted everywhere.
  14. Marble & Gold Barware Tool Set. For your friend who's just starting building a bar/ bar cart at home. This gold all-in-one kit is both functional and pretty.