Springing Up Winter Cocktails
All photos by Danielle Macdonald.
Some of us are done with winter and are dying to pack away the heavy coat and reach for the swimsuit. Just hold that thought, and before reaching for the sun lotion, consider the beauty of spring. Flowers begin to bloom and frowns on cold weary faces are replaced with a glimmer of a smile. Bar terraces open, minus the heat lamps, and people start ordering lighter drinks, willing the sun to shine and life to be peachy once more. Okay, that’s a little extreme but there is something about spring, that gets the streets buzzing and the cocktail bars humming.
The following cocktails are often associated with the cold winter months, but they're getting a spring makeover. Armed with the right ingredients, you will be skipping down the street to the tune of "Let’s Do It" (the Ella Fitzgerald version), throwing off that coat and indulging in these refreshing cocktails before you even have the time to say “farewell, winter”.
- 2 ounces/60 mL Old Overholt Rye (the recipe calls for the original formula, but for more kick, try it with the new Bottled in Bond variation)
- 1 ounce/30 mL Dubonnet Rouge
- 3 dashes Regan’s Orange Bitters No. 6
- twist of lemon
Stir all ingredients with crushed ice, strain and pour into a coup glass. Express the twist over the drink, rub it peel side down around the rim and discard.
The traditional vermouth ingredient has been replaced with a lighter, dryer white wine and a rosey gin.
- 1 ounce/30 mL Campari
- 1 ounce/30 mL dry, white wine (try a slightly aromatic style such as DJF Vinhos Escada Arinto Reserva from Portugal, gold medal winner in the 2017 NY International Wine Competition)
- 1 ounce/30 mL Dillon's Rose Gin
- Garnish: orange peel
Place all ingredients in a rocks/Old Fashioned glass and add ice. Stir until well-chilled. Garnish with orange peel.
Toddy’s Spring Break
This cocktail has the heat of a traditional toddy but the taste of spring and summer.
- 3 ounces/90 mL dark rum
- 1/2 ounce/15 mL Spiced Demerara Syrup (prepare traditional 1:1 syrup with demerara sugar and spices such as cinnamon, clove, cardamom and star anise. Cool and strain before using.)
- 2 ounces/60 mL hot mint tea
- garnish: mint sprig
Make a cup of hot mint tea and pour into a thick mug or glass. Add spiced demerara syrup and rum. Stir to combine. Garnish with mint.