You'd never guess it, considering how few cocktails I post on this here blog, but I'm actually kind of a cocktail nerd.
So obviously, there was no way I was going to pass up the chance to participate in Cocktail Day when the topic first came up.
When the time came to decide on a drink, I absolutely knew I'd be doing something with Meyer lemons, considering they're in season right now and I just can't get enough of their subtly floral lemon-meets-mandarin perfume.
Their vibrant colour and citrusy flavour are the perfect antidote to the icky grey that tends to blanket Toronto at this time of year.
At first, I thought about doing a hot toddy of sorts, seeing as the Polar Vortex had us freezing our butts off in subzero temperatures.
And then it warmed up. A lot.
So much so that the blanket of ice covering the city melted away into a soggy, muddy, drizzly mess, which is most definitely not hot toddy kind of weather.
After spending the better part of an afternoon chipping away at the thick layer of slippery ice outside my house, I desperately wanted something bright and refreshing to counteract all that slushy grey.
This drink was the answer. It's effervescent and bright, with woodsy rosemary to balance out the brightness of the Meyers, plus a splash of gin for another layer of aromatic, slightly herbal flavour.
Stir in soda water for fizz, and you've got yourself a lovely pick-me-up after a long slushy grey day. (Or pretty much any day, for that matter.)
Meyer lemons and rosemary come together in this contemporary twist on an old-fashioned classic.
Meyer Lemon Rosemary Syrup:
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 sprigs rosemary
- 2 thick strips Meyer lemon zest
- 4 oz gin
- 3 oz fresh-squeezed Meyer lemon juice
- 1 ½ oz Meyer Lemon Rosemary Simple Syrup
- Club soda, to top off
- Lemon slices, for garnish
- Rosemary sprigs, for garnish
Make the Syrup:
- In a small saucepan set over medium-low heat, combine water, sugar, rosemary sprigs and lemon zest.
- Bring the syrup to a simmer, and cook for 2 minutes or until the sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat and let steep for 15 minutes. Strain the syrup into a glass container and chill until ready to serve (it'll keep for up to 1 week).
Shake Up the Cocktails:
- In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, combine the gin, lemon juice and simple syrup. Shake vigorously for about 15 seconds.
- Strain into two chilled highball glasses filled with ice, and top each one off with a splash of club soda. Garnish with lemon slice and rosemary sprig.
It's Cocktail Day! Don't forget to check out the other fabulous bloggers mixing it up with us today:
- Pomegranate Party Punch by Cravings of a Lunatic
- White Cosmopolitans by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Hot Buttered Chocolate Rum by Cookistry
- Bacon Jalapeno Bloody Mary by Rants From My Crazy Kitchen
- Blood Orange Old Fashioned by Kelly Bakes
- Caipirinhas by Food Lust People Love
- Chocolate and Peanut Butter Martini by Hungry Couple
- Chocolate Cupcake Cocktail by JavaCupcake
- Ciderhouse Whiskey by From the Bookshelf
- Citrus Cranberry Punch by Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts
- Coconut-Key Lime Pie Martini by Home Cooking Memories
- Egyptian Martini by Cooking In Stilettos
- Espresso Martini by Liv Life
- Frosty Lemon Drop Martini by The Hopeless Housewife
- Frozen Marshmallow Mudslide by 365 Days of Baking & More
- Ginger Raspberry Fizzy by Try Anything Once
- Iced Cake Martini by Hezzi-D's Books and Cooks
- Le Jardinier by Confessions of a Culinary Diva
- Mandarin Mulled Wine by Food Babbles
- Meyer Lemon Rosemary Gin Fizz by Crumb
- Muddled Rosemary and Pineapple Cocktail by My Catholic Kitchen
- Peach Sparkler by Noshing With The Nolands
- Pineapple Margarita by Miss in the Kitchen
- Pomegranate Orange Spritzer by Dizzy Busy and Hungry
- Safe Sex on the Beach by Mom's Test Kitchen
- Side Car with Dried Cherries by Karen's Kitchen Stories
- Winter Fruit White Wine Sangria by The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
- Apple Pie Moonshine by Lola's Kitchen