The Phaseout (Slow down after two)
1.5 oz. Reyka Vodka
1 oz. lemon juice
.75 oz. rosemary syrup
2 oz. pear juice
Pour all ingredients into a tall glass over crushed ice and swizzle. (Rosemary simple syrup: Combine equal parts sugar and water and simmer until sugar is dissolved. Add several sprigs of rosemary and steep for one hour. Remove rosemary before use.)
The Fringe Benefit (Looks good, tastes better)
1.5 oz. Prairie Vodka or Broker’s Gin
.5 oz. Clear Creek Pear Brandy
.75 oz. lemon juice
.75 oz. hibiscus clove syrup*
Put first four ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a glass on ice. Top with sparkling wine.
*Hibiscus (clove) syrup: 1 cup dried sorrel, 2 cups water, 1 cinnamon stick, 4 whole cloves, 1 teaspoon ground ginger, 1 cup demerara sugar. In a medium saucepan over medium low flame, combine everything but sugar and let simmer, stirring, 5-10 minutes until the liquid is a deep red. Add sugar and increase heat a little. Bring just to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Let cool and then strain into a glass container. Refrigerate.
The Bad Boy Guarantee (Incredible ... use caution)
1 ounce gin or vodka
1 ounce ruby port
.75 ounce lemon juice
.5 ounce cinnamon syrup*
1 teaspoon cranberry preserves or cranberry sauce
Shake the gin, port, lemon juice, cinnamon syrup, and cranberry with ice until chilled. Strain into a glass with crushed ice and garnish with a sprig of mint.
*For cinnamon syrup, muddle .5 ounce of cassia cinnamon bark (or five cinnamon sticks) into very small pieces. Add 1 cup superfine sugar and 1 cup water. Heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring every so often so the sugar doesn’t burn. Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for five minutes. Remove from heat, keep covered, and refrigerate the syrup overnight in the pan. The next day, strain the syrup through a fine sieve into a glass container. Cover. Can be refrigerated for up to a month.