So here’s the deal: I love the spice of ginger beer in my cocktails, but I’m so over Moscow Mules. So what’s a girl to do? I went on a mission to find other ways to work the magic juice into cocktails without going full-tilt basic. Also, if you know me well, you know that I enjoy a stout drink.
Luckily, Crabbie’s Alcoholic Ginger Beer is a thing. Crabbie’s is a boozy version (4.8%) of the basic favorite out of Edinburgh, Scotland and is available in original, orange, and Scottish raspberry. They’ve been making this boozy, gingery goodness since 1801, so they must know what they’re doing. Crabbie’s steeps natural fermented ginger for up to 6 weeks before blending it with 4 secret ingredients, giving it a deep, spicy flavor. Check it out in bars around Dallas or whip (slash shake) one of these up at home to celebrate Crabbie’s Week August 21-27.
THE GINGER SOUR
2oz Grand Marnier
1oz lemon juice
One egg white
Crabbie’s Ginger Beer
Dash of orange bitters
Shake together Grand Marnier, lemon juice, and egg white for ten seconds. Add ice to the shaker and shake vigorously for another thirty seconds. Pour Crabbie’s into a collins glass to fill halfway, then strain the shaken mixture over it. (Egg white may rise above the rim of the glass depending on your shaking abilities … but don’t be sad if it doesn’t.) Add a dash of orange bitters on the top of the egg white head and garnish with an orange peel.
GETTIN’ FIGGY WITH IT
1oz fig butter
Crabbie’s Scottish Raspberry Ginger Beer
Add bourbon and fig butter to a shaker and shake vigorously to combine. Pour over ice, then top with Crabbie’s Scottish Raspberry Ginger Beer. Garnish with a half a fig.
Look out for Crabbie’s around Dallas … and make sure to celebrate Crabbie’s Week next week!
While it’s hot outside, it’s really tough to still look cool … and even harder to keep your cool when entertaining. Luckily, my friend Jaclyn Mittman is giving me some outdoor entertaining pointers for my summer parties. Her biggest advice: texture.
We got together for a quick tablescape lesson and some tequila cocktails … because, summer. Scroll to see what we got into.
What inspired your tablescape?
Rustic summer. I love the look of the distressed wood with modern, elegant pieces like gold flatware and matte black dinnerware. The white peonies and eucalyptus offered even more texture and elevated the entire table without having to add a lot of color. I tend to stick with neutrals so this tablescape reflected my design style perfectly.
Where can we get this setup … like STAT? Target has the best, affordable pieces for entertaining! And the best part is it’s so reasonably priced that you can have multiple sets/motifs.
What is your best advice for entertaining?
Texture! Add texture to the table by adding in layers with a table runner, napkins, or florals and plants. Also alcohol. Alcohol is a must when entertaining.
Music can also completely set the tone and mood for any party. When entertaining, I stick with Spotify for their pre-made playlists based on mood or the type of party you’re throwing. I know I can let it play and not have to worry about it the rest of the time. Also, a great Bluetooth speaker is the way to go. I love the JBL Xtreme Splashproof Wireless Speaker for parties but click this site if you want to see other speaker options out there. (NOTE FROM SUSIE: feel free to use my boozy playlist!)
Do you have any special tips or tricks for summer entertaining?
Make sure you’re wearing something breezy, because the host is always running around. Also, make sure you’re providing guests with water, shade, and (if possible) fans! (And did I mention alcohol?)
Since it’s warm outside, we obviously needed something to cool us off. Enter: tequila cocktails. We went for something that was light but potent–TheResting Garden Margarita. Plenty of tequila and some fresh juice keeps this recipe light and drinkable and the grilled mango garnish makes it gorgeous to boot.
The Resting Garden Margarita 1 3/4 oz Roca Patrón Silver 1/2 oz Patrón Citronge Mango
1 oz fresh lemon juice
3/4 oz agave syrup
6 sage leaves (plus more for garnish)
Pinch of salt
Grilled mango slices
Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake with ice to chill. “Double strain” the drink by pouring it through a fine mesh strainer into an ice-filled old fashioned glass. Garnish with sage leaves and a grilled mango slice.
We went with Roca Patrón Silver as this recipe doesn’t have much going on … so you can taste the quality of the tequila. (Because good liquor shouldn’t be covered up, y’all.) If you haven’t tried Roca Patrón Silver, it has notes of black pepper, a citrus nose, and a smooth taste.
What made you start your blog, JaclynMittman.com? I originally started my blog as a place to share my beauty findings and to be able to review makeup products I used regularly. As it turns out … people wanted to read it. It has turned into beauty, fashion, lifestyle, and more!
What is your go-to sunscreen this summer?
I swear by Aesop’s Avail Body Lotion with Sunscreen. It doesn’t feel heavy like most sunscreens and it easily absorbs and doesn’t leave a white cast on your skin. It also smells incredible!
Kind of loving your outfit … it’s perfect for summer. Where can we get it? Top – Choies Black Off Shoulder Half Sleeve Blouse in black, $11.90 Shorts – Madewell San Diego Cover-Up Shorts in strokedash, $39.50 $29.99 Heels – Steve Madden Christey Heel in black suede, $109.95
I like to entertain … like … a lot. The worst part, though, is being forced to be tied to the bar so you can make everyone drinks or to keep it tidy when the one messy friend inevitably spills all the things. (Dammit, Linda.) Say “adios” to playing babysitter to the bar and batch out a cocktail (or three) for your Cinco de Mayo fiesta.
For Cinco de Mayo, the easiest thing to batch out is, of course, margaritas. And (hold on to your sombrero), the US imported 12.3 million cases (yes, M-M-M-M-M-million) of tequila in 2014 … and Texas is apparently one of the top 10 tequila consuming states in the US. So yeah, a drink with tequila is a slam dunk.
This Cinco de Mayo, I’ll be visiting family in Pennsylvania to celebrate my grandmother’s 90th birthday. Luckily, on her last visit to Dallas, my mom and I introduced her to margaritas … and she loved them. Needless to say, once I land in the Keystone State, I’ll be swinging by a liquor store to pick up the makings of this remixed margarita just for her.
So, why Sauza? It’s made with 100% blue agave in Jalisco, Mexico the same way it has been made since 1873. The agave is put into production within 48 hours which gives the tequila a crisp flavor.
Perfect Pear Margarita (serves 8)
2 cups Sauza® Signature Blue Silver Tequila
1/2 cup lemon Juice
1/2 cup lime juice
1 cup simple syrup
1 cup pear syrup
Mix all ingredients in an ice-filled pitcher. Serve in margarita glasses garnished with a rosemary sprig and lime wheel. (Ignore the color … because it’s delicious!)
1 cup pear purée
1⁄4 cup Sugar in the Raw
1⁄2 tablespoon fresh ginger, chopped
1 cinnamon stick
1 pinch grated nutmeg
In a medium saucepan, combine all ingredients over medium heat and stir until sugar dissolves fully. Reduce to low and simmer for 10 minutes. (The syrup will thicken-up slightly.) Strain and store in an airtight container in a refrigerator for up to two weeks.
I was given the chance to participate in this campaign and was sent items from Sauza to promote.
I guess I’ve pigeonholed myself. I suppose that I deserve it for making (writing about) drinking my hobby. At this point, I’m no longer surprised when I’m asked to make a drink for a party as my contribution. I was honored to do so for a longtime family friend’s baby shower recently.
The color scheme being blues and yellow, a matching drink was requested. I did my best with a Blueberry Mojito made with Cruzan Rum … because I refuse to try my hand at a cocktail using Blue Curaçao. (Thought I’ll say that some local bartenders are starting to use it more … and not doing it badly.) While I thought the drink (which was the only alcoholic beverage served) would be plenty for the afternoon party, it was gone in 45 minutes!
1 cup fresh, washed blueberries (plus more for garnish)
4oz Cruzan Rum
8-10 fresh mint leaves
2 teaspoons mint simple syrup 2 limes
6oz club soda
To create blueberry puree, blend blueberries until smooth. Add rum, mint syrup, lime juice, blueberry puree, and ice in a cocktail shaker and shake until combined. Pour over ice and top with club soda. (Optional: Garnish with blueberries, mint leaves, and a lime wedge or curl.)
TIPS: To batch out this cocktail, I combined the ingredients in a drink dispenser and allowed guests to garnish it themselves. To keep the mint crisp, keep the stems in ice water. Puree and syrup can be prepared in advance.
Conquistador – created by Milagro Brand Ambassador Jaime Salas
Chill coupe glass with ice and water and set aside. Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass. Add ice and stir until well chilled and diluted. Discard chilling ice from the coupe. Strain ingredients into chilled coupe. Using a vegetable peeler, remove a long piece of orange peel. Express the oil over the cocktail, rub the peel around the rim of the glass, and place atop the cocktail
Ancho Old Fashioned – created by Milagro Brand Ambassador Jaime Salas
Combine all ingredients in a mixing beaker. Add regular ice and stir for 30 seconds. Strain into a double old fashioned glass over large hand cut ice block. Using a vegetable peeler, remove long orange and lemon peels. Express each over the top of the cocktail and rub them together around the rim of the glass. Roll peels together into a rosette and place atop the cocktail.
Don’t you hate it when you’re drinking a Moscow Mule and think, “Oh, gee, this is delicious, but I wish this was a bit stronger.” (Yeah, me, too.) Here to answer the call: Crabbie’s Alcoholic Ginger Beer, the UK’s best-selling ginger beer … that just happens to be alcoholic.
Good enough to drink by itself (over ice), Crabbie’s is made with four secret fruits and spices, combined with ginger and then steeped for eight weeks. At 4.8% ABV, it’s in the same ABV bracket as the Buds and Millers. It is fermented, which really comes through in the taste, which (thank God) isn’t too spicy.
Check out some of the drink options to use with Crabbie’s below (other than Moscow Mules … if you must, you must).
– 1oz gin
– two small slices of lime
– 4 small sprigs of cilantro
– crushed ice
Muddle three sprigs of cilantro and one slice of lime in a shaker. Add gin and ice and shake. Strain into a martini glass and top with Crabbie’s. Garnish with cilantro sprig and slice of lime.
CRABBIE’S CUP #1
– 2 slices of cucumber
– 1/2oz sweet vermouth
– 1/2oz triple sec
– 1oz gin or vodka (drinker’s preference)
Muddle cucumber and berries in pint glass. Add ice and other ingredients and top with Crabbie’s. Garnish with mint.