For this year’s 4th of July, we spent a long weekend in Mammoth Lakes with a whole slew of good friends. On Saturday, our friends Jay and Colleen hosted a cocktail party with a twist (pun totally intended): a cocktail competition!
“Bring a cocktail in a pitcher to enter in the contest and an appetizer for everyone to enjoy.” How cool is that?
Creativity exuded from the great collection of amazingly fun and talented folks, and we were even visited by a mammoth styled party crasher – a black bear…
Here is the recipe for my entry. I knew I wanted to use peppermint from my garden and St. Germain as a sweetener, but the actual recipe wasn’t conceived until about an hour before the party (you know me, living on the edge). St. Germain is an artisanal liquor made in France from the hand-picked blooms of the Elderflower. It has this incredibly unique flavor that is a little bit fruity and a little bit floral, but somehow isn’t quite one or the other. The best I can describe it is it’s the kind of thing you taste and without quite knowing why, say “oh my gosh, that’s amazing!”
I didn’t win the competition (no time to invent a creative backstory, and I didn’t quite realize that presentation would be such an integral part of the contest), but I did get voted as the “one you want to drink all night long.” I heartily agree!
St. Germain and Vodka Mojito a la Valerie
Inspired by this recipe from the St. Germain Website
2 cups Kettle One
1 cup St. Germain
1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
50 mint leaves plus more for garnish
1 liter Pellegrino
In a bowl fitted with a pouring spout, muddle the mint for about 2 – 3 minutes. Then, pour in the rest of the ingredients (minus the Pellegrino) and refrigerate until serving time. Just before you serve — strain the ingredients into a pitcher. Fill a glass of your choice 1/2 of the way with ice and pour in your mixture – top with a splash of Pelligrino and garnish with a mint leaf.