Cherry Smash

It’s cherry season so why not celebrate with a cherry smash - it’s sweet, minty and tastes like summer!

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Do you guys love cherry season as much as I do - they are one of those little fruits that because they seem to be available so rarely just feel special.

Now when it comes to cocktails I have said it many many times, I don’t like things all that sweet which is why this drink is perfect. You can add more or less simple syrup to adjust to your personal taste and even make it non-alcoholic if your serving kids or non-drinkers.

Now, this drink requires some good muddling, but if you don't have a muddler have no fear, the handle of a wooden spoon will solve all of your problems, plus you don’t need to have an extra tool taking up room in your cupboard.

So since it’s summer what is your favourite patio sipping drink? Do you like a classic mojito or do you switch it up and make your cocktail making a bit of a game? Keep a bit of simple syrup on hand as well as some sparkling water and your options are endless. How about adding pureed mango, watermelon or blackberries. I think that if it’s in season it’s a wonderful idea!

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prep time 5 minutes

total time 5 minutes

servings 2

Ingredients

1/2 cup cherries pitted

4 mint leaves + more to garnish

1 oz lemon juice

2 oz simple syrup

4 oz vodka

soda water

Instructions

Divide cherries and mint leaves between 2 highball glasses and muddle until cherries are completely broken down. To the glasses divide lemon juice, simple syrup and vodka. Top with soda water and garnish with mint leaves.

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Coconut Jalapeño Margarita

It’s almost Happy Margarita Day - aka Cinco De Mayo - so make yourself a cocktail and enjoy the weekend!

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Margaritas - one of the first cocktails I ever ordered in a restaurant and let’s just say it was not love at first sip! It was margarita Monday many many years ago at Earls and so ordering a margarita just seemed like a good idea. Everyone else ordered strawberry or mango but not me, I went all in with a classic lime margarita on the rocks - needless to say, I had no idea what I was ordering.

Let’s just say the first challenge was the salt - I assumed it was going to be sugar so that was an unfortunate surprise; secondly, it wasn’t sweet, fruity, or slushy like the other ones. I took 1 sip and I was done.

Fast forward many many years later and margaritas are now one of my go-to drinks, especially on vacation. Maybe it’s my old age but the tart lemon with a hint of sweet is now right up my ally and the fruity slushy drinks are long behind me.

Now while I love a classic lime margarita I also like a good switch up so this coconut jalapeño combo is right up my ally. Plus there are so many great coconut sparkling waters that are sugar-free that making this drink is a breeze. You can also give your drink an extra spicy kick if you take some time and make a jalapeño tequila. It’s so easy and only takes a few days. Just pour your tequila into a jar and add jalapeño slices. This will really give your tequila a great flavour, but if you don't have time you can always just let your jalapeños rest in the tequila for 10 minutes or so. The flavour won’t be as strong but it still works!

So if your celebrating Cinco De Mayo this weekend make sure you celebrate with one of these spicy coconut treats, your adult self will love it!

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prep time 15 minutes

total time 15 minutes

servings 1

Ingredients

1.5 oz tequila

.5 oz Cointreau

4 oz freshly squeezed lime juice

4 slices of jalapeño

coarse salt

coconut sparkling water (sugar free)

1 lime wedge

ice

Instructions

Run the lime wedge around the rim of your cocktail glass then dip the glass in coarse salt. To the glass add in jalapeño slices and tequila and let sit for 10 minutes to allow the jalapeño to infuse the vodka.

To the glass add Cointreau, lime juice and ice then stir and top with coconut sparkling water - serve immediately.

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Smoked Strawberry Smash

The smokey strawberries are the star of this yummy cocktail. With freshly squeezed orange juice this is a cocktail you can feel good about indulging in!

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Did you say Smoked Strawberries!!! I do need to admit that before this cocktail I hadn’t ever toasted strawberries, but all that has now changed. Plus, roasting strawberries over an open flame makes you feel like your making strawberry s’mores - which might not be a bad idea!

So back to this yummy beverage. I don’t know about you guys but I don’t mind pulp in my beverages, but I know lots of you are not a fan so feel free to strain your puree before you serve though you will miss out on some of the black charred bits which I personally think totally add to the drink.

So now that you have your lovely beverage what’s your plan for tonight? We are checking out a comedy show and I’m not going to lie, I’m a tad nervous. Is it only on TV that they heckle the crowd or is this something I should be concerned about? It’s the same thing with street performers. I’m always the one trying to stay out of their line of sight so that I don’t get picked out of the crowd. I can be the only one that feels this way right!

Anyway, wish me luck and keep your fingers crossed we get the worst seats in the house!

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prep time 10 minutes

cook time 10 minutes

total time 20 minutes

servings 4

Ingredients

2 cups fresh strawberries

8 oz vodka

8 oranges or 2 cups oranges juice

soda water

Instructions

Wash and core each strawberry. Over the flame of a gas stove toast each strawberry similar to how you would toast a marshmallow (if you do not have a gas stove you can do this on the bbq or under the broiler). Allow each strawberry to get blackened then add strawberries to a food processor and pulse until smooth.

If you're using fresh oranges squeeze each orange into a medium sized bowl or juice pitcher.

To prepare, evenly divide strawberry puree between 4 glasses then add in 2 oz of vodka, 1/2 cup of orange juice and top with soda water. Serve immediately.

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Homemade Lemon Radler

Every good party needs a signature cocktail! Switch things up with a beertail, I promise even non-beer lovers will enjoy this refreshing beverage.

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So I will admit that I’m not a very big fan of beer. I have been to many many breweries in my life and I generally am the person that is asking what the lightest beer option is and ordering that.

Now a couple of summers ago when we were spending lots of time working on our back yard I did get into drinking Radlers, only because it doesn’t seem right to drink a glass of Chardonnay while digging in the dirt. So while I was enjoying drinking a Radler from the can it never occurred to me to make my own.

So while I was thinking about what type of drink to serve for a Super Bowl party a beertail seemed to be the most natural option, but so many are made with dark beers which are just not my thing. Now what I love about this drink is you can still use your light beer, and you can make your own simple syrup and you know exactly what your drinking. It also lightens things up so you're really only having half a beer for every 1 drink - win-win right!

Now the one thing that you want to make sure that you use is lemon-lime soda water, not soda so that you are not adding extra sugar where it’s really not needed!

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prep time 10 minutes

cook time 5 hour

total time 15 minutes

servings 4


Ingredients

1/2 cup white sugar

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (5 small lemons)

2 cans or bottles of light beer

Lemon Lime soda water

Instructions

In a small saucepan combine sugar and water and bring to a simmer stirring continuously until sugar is melted. Add the juice of your lemons and allow to cool.

Divide lemon simple syrup evenly between 4 glasses (approx. 2 oz per glass). Pour half a can of beer into each glass then top with soda water. Garnish with lemon slices.

*Be sure to use unsweetened soda water, you do not want to add additional sweetness to your drink.

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Cucumber Ginger Gin Fizz

This Cucumber Ginger Gin Fizz is the perfect healthy-ish cocktail. With a full blended cucumber and some spicy ginger, it’s like having your green juice and cocktail too!

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So apparently today is Blue Monday - the most depressing day of the year, so I say you should definitely do something extra fun today to combat those winter blues. I would highly recommend making up a batch of cocktails and watching an old classic on Netflix.

The best thing about this drink is that since your using a full cucumber, so if eating healthy was one of your New Years resolutions this drink is the perfect option. By blending the cucumber you get a bit of foam on the top which I personally love, but that’s not your thing you could certainly strain your drink and it is still just as awesome.

This also makes a really great mocktail, so if you are in the middle of a dry January no fear, this is almost as good without the gin.

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prep time 10 minutes

cook time 5 minutes

total time 15minutes

servings 4


Ingredients

1 long english cucumber

1 inch piece of ginger peeled

2 lemons

4 oz gin

1 cup sugar

1 cup cold water

soda water

ice

Instructions

To make your simple syrup combine sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a low simmer. Stir constantly until sugar is fully dissolved - allow to cool.

In a food processor place your cucumber that has been cut into 1-inch slices and your peeled ginger. Blend until cucumber is fully pureed and no chunks are remaining.

Pour your cucumber ginger mixture into a cocktail shaker along with the juice of 2 lemons, 4 oz of gin and 4 oz of simple syrup. Top with ice and shake until well combined. Divide between 4 glasses and top with soda water.

*If you don’t use all of your cucumber ginger puree store in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.

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