It is now less than a week until Turkey Day!! And for many of you hosting, you may be in full on planning mode…or panic mode, depending on your level of hosting duties or stress management skills! Whether you are hosting a house full of family and friends, or your plans next week involve apartment hopping various Friendsgivings before sneaking off to watch The Hunger Games: Catching Fire alone, we can probably all agree on one thing: The holidays are MUCH easier to handle with a few adult beverages on hand. But what do you serve your picky aunt Debbie, your wine snob friends or that late-blooming college buddy people still refer to as PBR Pete? Most likely, you won’t be able to please everyone, but there are a few sure-fire, seasonal tipples that I thought are worth sharing!
Every day until Thanksgiving, I’ll be featuring a cocktail that you can serve while waiting for that turkey to plump or alongside those marshmallow, sweet potatoes. And beyond. Each of the cocktails that were created for last Saturday’s pre-holiday Brooklyn spirits event will be featured as well a few others that seem appropriate. These were all designed to be simple to make, with minimal ingredients. But, still crowd pleasing. Low maintainance cocktails with high maintainance results!
The first cocktails featured in this Thanksgiving Countdown series are two recipes that I’ve created for Quinciple’s Thanksgiving box going out next week. If you live in New York and don’t know about Quinciple yet, you MUST check it out. It’s a locally based subscription service of finely curated farmer’s market ingredients, as well as products from specialty food purveyors. It maintains the ethos, convenience and quality of farm fresh ingredients that you might get in a CSA but also includes higher end products from their favorite bakeries, cheese makers and small producers. And they also always include recipes!
Kate Galassi, the dynamo behind Quinciple, wanted a few cranberry-inspired cocktail recipes to accompany the gorgeous, hand-picked, heirloom, no-spray cranberries that are to be included in their special Thanksgiving box. I was more than happy to oblige! I also included the recipe for my cranberry citrus syrup that can be used with booze, soda or drizzled over vanilla ice cream, for post-turkey gobbling!
Harvest Old Fashioned (featured on Quinciple’s blog)
12 Fresh Cranberries
Large Slice Orange Peel
3-4 dashes – Regan’s Orange Bitters or Aromatic Bitters
tsp – Maple Syrup
3 oz – Bourbon or Rye
At the bottom of a rocks glass, muddle 10 cranberries, orange peel, bitters and maple syrup with a splash of club soda. Add large cubes of ice and stir in whiskey. Optional – Top with a splash of soda, garnish with speared orange wedge and cranberry.
1 oz. – Gin
1/2 oz – Cranberry Syrup
1/2 oz Lemon Juice
3 Fresh Cranberries
Combine gin, syrup and lemon juice in an ice filled cocktail shaker. Shake 10-12 seconds. Strain into champagne flute or coupe glass. Fill rest of glass with dry sparkling wine. Garnish with floating cranberries.