Archive for the ‘Beverage’ Category


Raspberry-Thyme Smash

September 4, 2013

I don’t exactly have super-extensive experience in the world of cocktails, but I usually try to sample a craft cocktail or two when I visit the more upscale restaurants in my area. Especially cocktails that include house-infused liquors or unique combinations of flavors; basically, things that I don’t have the equipment or inclination to make at home. Consequently, the cocktails I make at home never really taste that interesting, probably partly because my liquor cabinet still contains a lot of less-expensive brands of liquor from my graduate school days. I’m slowly starting to remedy this situation now that I can afford higher-end alcohol (and since I don’t actually drink all that often, a 750mL bottle of whatever ingredient will probably last several months).

So, starting to build up my luxury stash… I bought some Hendrick’s gin. I’ve run into several yummy-sounding drink recipes lately that specifically call for Hendrick’s, so why not. I found this one on Bon Appetit’s web site (originally published in the July 2008 issue). I had purchased raspberries earlier in the week, my garden is overrun with thyme, and the weather was hot… perfect time to try this summery drink.

I took one sip, and oh man. This is seriously one of the best cocktails I’ve ever tasted, and definitely the best I’ve ever made at home. Doesn’t taste too strongly of alcohol, perfectly balanced sweet and tart, and herby thyme flavor that complements the Hendrick’s (I can see why they specified that particular brand). My parents are usually wine rather than cocktail drinkers, but I made them each one of these for our Labor Day get-together and they loved it! :) I’ll definitely be making more of these the next time I have fresh raspberries on hand. Yum!

Raspberry-thyme smash

See recipe


Philadelphia Fish House Punch

November 21, 2012

When I came across this punch recipe in the October issue of Bon Appetit, I thought it was be perfect to serve at the large Thanksgiving party we were attending at a friend’s house. I’ve never made any sort of punch before, only individual cocktails (Bon Appetit’s hibiscus margarita recipe is fantastic, btw – I’ll have to post that one some time soon), but this recipe looked fairly straightforward. The hostess was agreeable, so we were good to go!

I made the ice ring and the simple syrup the day before the party and mixed everything else together in the morning. Unfortunately neither I nor my friend own a punch bowl, so we had to use a large mixing bowl and a soup ladle, but hey, whatever works!

A warning: This punch is GOOD. Too good, lol. It’s very very strong and goes down very very smoothly. There’s a reason the recipe says it serves 24 people. Drink responsibly! ;)

Philadelphia Fish House punch

See recipe


White Sangria

September 11, 2011

We had a small get-together to celebrate my friend’s birthday a few weeks ago, and rather than just bringing over a bottle of wine, I decided to make something festive! I’ve made Cook’s Illustrated red sangria many times before, but this was the first time I’ve tried the white version. It’s the same recipe as red sangria, flavored with oranges and lemons, but it calls for a lighter-bodied wine such as Pinot Grigio rather than Merlot. I used a locally produced semi-dry white wine – it seems upstate New York is more known for Rieslings and sweeter wines, but it’s best to use a slightly drier wine for sangria because the added sugar and the fruit contribute significant sweetness. The sangria was fruity and refreshing – perfect for the warm summer night!

White sangria

See recipe