Looking for a refreshing cocktail to make for your next brunch party? We’ve got you covered. This delightful beverage was introduced to us by our mixologist friend Al who made it for a backyard breakfast party we threw at our house last month. Ryan and a few friends spent the past year organizing an elaborate reunion celebration for his college acapella group, The SoCal VoCals. With over 100 guests, gourmet food trucks, custom craft cocktails, and live musical performances, the party was a huge success. And on this beautiful Sunday morning we celebrated their hard work over a relaxing brunch. We prepared a double batch of our Winter Shakshuka for the main course, other friends brought tasty dishes to the potluck, and this sociable drink was the perfect light accompaniment to all the delicious home-cooked food that was spread out on the table. Made with crisp cold navy strength gin, vibrant green chartreuse, fresh lemon juice, sparkling soda water, and garnished with a slice of orange, this effervescent cocktail is sunshine in a glass.
This light morning refreshment is adapted from a wonderful book called Speakeasy, a collection of classic drinks with a modern twist. The original cocktail known as a Ramos Gin Fizz uses cream which gives the drink a heavier and richer consistency. This updated version replaces the dairy with a complex French liquor known as chartreuse which naturally glows luminously green from the 130 aromatic herbs, plants, roots, and flowers that it is distilled with. You won’t miss the extra thickness, as the recipe uses egg whites which produces an irresistible smooth and silky texture that slightly fizzes from the bubbly soda water. And if you’ve never cooked with orange blossom water before, this is the perfect time to put it to good use! The essence of the orange tree flowers complements the tart lemon juice and gives this citrusy drink a sweet, aromatic fragrance.
We whipped up a version of this drink on our Snapchat (@husbandscook) this week. And for those of you saw the videos, you may have noticed how easy it was to make. If you already have simple syrup in your refrigerator, the rest is easy to prepare. All you need to do is separate an egg, mix everything together, and enjoy. In celebration of Spring, we’d like to raise our glass and make a toast to spending more time outside: to planting seeds in the garden, to taking long quiet evening walks around the neighborhood, and to more leisurely mornings with potlucks, good friends, and to drinking strong booze before the clock starts to display double digits! Cheers to the weekend!
adapted from Speakeasy by Jason Kosmas and Dushan Zaric
1/2 ounce (1 tablespoon) green chartreuse
1 ounce (2 tablespoons) club soda
1 3/4 ounces (3 1/2 tablespoons) navy strength gin
1 ounce (2 tablespoons) lemon juice
3/4 ounce (1 1/2 tablespoons) simple syrup
5 drops orange blossom water
1 egg white
orange slice for garnish
Pour the green chartreuse into a collins glass, then fill the glass with ice and add the club soda. Place glass in the freezer to chill. In a shaker, combine the gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, orange blossom water, and egg white, and shake vigorously for 15 seconds. Fill shaker 3/4 full of ice, then shake again for 15 seconds. Strain into the chilled glass, garnish with an orange slice, and enjoy!
— “Navy strength” means the gin is over 100 proof. If you cannot find navy strength gin, feel free to substitute another gin of your choice.
— Simple syrup can be made easily by combining equal parts water and granulated sugar in a small saucepan, then stirring over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Transfer to a heatproof container such as a glass jar for storage, and keep refrigerated until ready to use.
— Use the freshest eggs you can find, keep them refrigerated, and make sure they are clean and uncracked. Rinse the eggs off and crack them just before making the drink so the white stays fresh.
— Do not use pasteurized eggs. They are not suited for making cocktails since they have a slightly unpleasant, processed flavor.