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A garden in your glass: Floral cocktail ideas

floral cocktails
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A garden in your glass: Floral cocktail ideas

With Labor Day around the corner, you have the perfect opportunity to capitalize on the final days of the season with an outdoor party. Summer is slowly coming to a close, meaning it's an ideal time to take advantage of the greenery and thriving flowers outside before cooler weather prevails. While planning your soiree, you might want to consider serving up some beverages that are inspired by the summer season's beautiful flowers. Not only do botanicals make for a beautiful garnish in any cocktail, but they can also infuse a unique and exotic flavor as well. In fact, Wine Enthusiast magazine reported that floral elements have been a part of cocktail culture for years, and are becoming even more popular with time. With these drinks, your guests might even forget that autumn is right around the corner.

The Aviation

This classic cocktail, which, according to The Huffington Post, was first created at the Hotel Wallick in Times Square, gets its blue hue from violet liqueur. To concoct one yourself, Food & Wine recommends…

  • fill a cocktail shaker with ice
  • add 2 ounces of gin
  • 3/8 ounce of maraschino liqueur
  • 3/4 ounce of fresh lemon juice
  • 3/8 ounce crème de violette
  • Shake the ingredients together until they're thoroughly blended, then strain into a coupe glass
  • Pop a marasca cherry on top for an edible garnish

The recipe serves eight, so there's plenty to go around.

Calamity Jane

Robert Magee, mixologist at CUCIAN urbana in San Diego, came up with a unique martini that infuses the delicate flavor of lavender and sophisticated taste of elderflower to soften harsh whiskey. Wine Enthusiast reported that:

  • 2 ounces of white whiskey make the base for this beverage
  • Add 1/4 ounce each of elderflower liqueur and lavender liqueur to the whiskey
  • mix them all together in a cocktail shaker. After straining over ice, sprinkle lavender petals for a lovely adornment.

Sparkling Red Rose

A rose is a rose is a rose – unless it's floating in a champagne flute. This elegant cocktail comes from Martha Stewart, and only requires:

  • 6 ounces sweet sparkling red wine, such as Lambrusco
  • 1/8 teaspoon rose water
  • sliced up strawberries
  • Just pour the wine into a champagne glass, top with rose water and add the strawberries for a decorative (and delicious) touch

Juniper Jump

What could possibly cut the pungent juniper taste of gin? Only the fresh, cooling flavor of cucumber and sweetness of hibiscus. Wine Enthusiast recommended:

  • fill up a cocktail shaker with 2 ounces of gin
  • 1/2 ounce hibiscus liqueur
  • a dash of club soda and muddled cucumber
  • Stir the liquids together, allowing the cucumber to soak in
  • Fill a martini glass with the mixture and float a fresh slice of cucumber on top

Rhubarb and Rose Ramos Gin Fizz

This creamy, effervescent aperitif is truly dessert in a glass. Food52 suggested creating your own hibiscus syrup by:

  • chop rhubarb stalks into 1-inch sections, enveloping them in cheesecloth and putting them over low to medium heat for 30 minutes in 2 cups of water and 1 cup of sugar
  • Refrigerate the substance in a closed glass container
  • Once cooled, combine 2 ounces of the syrup with 1 ounce of London dry gin, 1/2 ounce lemon juice, 1/2 ounce lime juice, 1 egg white and 1 ounce of heavy cream in a cocktail shaker and agitate well for half a minute.
  • Just a drop or two of rosewater is enough to add a subtle and unexpected floral flavor. Add ice, shake for 30 more seconds, and strain into a tall glass. Top with a splash of soda and enjoy – but keep in mind this recipe only makes one drink!

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