When I found my first bottle of St. Germain elderflower liqueur last year, I was – like many of you – inspired by its unique flavor and wanted to use it in a cocktail. I mixed it with vodka, I mixed it with gin, I mixed it with lemon juice, and I sweetened it with simple syrup. And everything I came up with ended up being remarkably similar to this drink, which – while delicious – lacked the complexity I was looking for in a drink to put on my cocktail menu.
Enter Sweet Cheeks Winery. Their 2006 Estate Pinot Gris has something you won’t find in too many Oregon wines: big, ripe, juicy white peaches on the palate. And when I tasted it, I knew I had to find a way to work this baby into a cocktail.
White wine just isn’t strong enough to use on its own in a cocktail, for the most part. So I decided to have a little fun with it and reduce it down into a syrup that I could use to sweeten a cocktail, while bringing those unique floral wine flavors to the party. The result is a drink with a little more depth, while still light and refreshing. Say, the sort of cocktail you could enjoy with brunch!
No garnish is necessary, as it will just get in the way of the luscious aromas rising from the glass.
East of Eden Print Me
- 1½ oz London dry gin
- ¾ oz fresh lemon juice
- ½ oz pinot gris syrup*
- ¼ oz St. Germain elderflower liqueur
- ½ oz egg white, lightly beaten
- Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice.
- Shake until cold.
- Fine-strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
- Express oils of a lemon peel over the surface of the drink (optional) and discard the peel.
- Serve with a smile.
*To make pinot gris syrup, simmer one bottle pinot gris (or try experimenting with other local white wines – this is one drink that can evoke a sense of place) over medium heat until reduced by half. Add 12 ounces sugar and stir until clear. Bottle and chill until ready for use.
Recipe printed courtesy of jeffreymorgenthaler.com