One of my favourite things about the end of summer is the fresh fruit. Peaches, nectarines, raspberries and blueberries are spilling over the B.C.-Alberta border in great quantity and my appetite for them knows no limit. I’m eating them plain, with yogurt, in cereal, in salads and now, thanks to Absolut Grapevine, I’m drinking them too.
Thirsty Traveler and mixologist Kevin Brauch created some summer cocktail recipes incorporating several different spirits, from Absolut vodka to Malibu rum. The folks at LexPR (bless them!) then shipped me a bottle of Absolut Grapevine (smells and tastes like white grapes, with alcohol) and a recipe list with simple instructions: Enjoy.
They somehow knew that my son would clog the upstairs toilet with a pair of Sesame Street gonch, and my daughter would accidentally knock over a house plant onto the area rug … leading poor Mommy to opine: “Oh, Absolut Grapevine, where have you been all my summer?” Sadly, unopened, in my liquor cabinet. Until now.
As soon as the kids were in bed I mixed up a Fruit Forward cocktail because we had fresh blueberries and raspberries on hand, plus half a bottle of white wine. This drink is a “MacGyver recipe” born out of a “memorable camping trip,” says Brauch. Remind me to go camping with Brauch, who evidently packs in vodka, fresh berries, simple syrup and white wine.
The cocktail is like a boozy sangria (note: 2 parts vodka, 1 part wine), with the bonus of extra fruit as you sip your way down the glass. It’s especially enjoyed during late summer weekends, or on school nights when your kids have trashed the house. Drink, mix another, repeat. And remember: Enjoy!
- 2 oz Absolut vodka (I used Grapevine, with dazzling results)
- Handful of fresh seasonal fruit of your choice (I used raspberries and blueberries)
- 1/4 oz fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 oz simple syrup
- Jacob’s Creek Moscato white wine (I used Summerhill organic Chardonnay, 2009)
In a cocktail shaker glass, muddle fruit with lemon juice and simple syrup. Add vodka, pour all over ice, shake vigorously, strain into a chilled Collins glass filled with ice, and top with the wine. Garnish with a fresh mint sprig.
–Recipe by Kevin Brauch