GIDGET’S PUMPKIN MARTINI

We’ve accepted the fact that fall is here and are ready to cozy up with warm sweaters and festive cocktails. But we aren’t suggesting you only sip Irish coffees for the next three months. This season brings a new roster of autumn-appropriate cocktails for your sipping pleasure.

This drink’s wonder-ingredient is Spicy Pumpkin Infused Vodka which takes a bit of time but is well worth the effort. The great news is that once you’ve made a batch you can sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labor with this season-worthy martini. You can also include the recipe with a beautifully packaged bottle of the infused vodka as a hostess gift as you enter into this party season.  Either way, ENJOY!

GIDGET’S PUMPKIN MARTINI

pumpkin-martini

Anything pumpkin makes us happy this time of year, so we wanted to create a cocktail that was the best of these flavors without being overly sweet.

TOOLS :: Cocktail shaker, strainer, 2 small plates
GLASS ::  Martini or Coupe
EXTRAS :: Granulated sugar with Pumpkin Pie Spice for glass rim
SERVINGS :: 2 cocktails

INGREDIENTS :: 
4 oz. Pumpkin Spice Vodka Infusion
2 oz. Captain Morgans Original Spiced Rum (dark)
1 oz. Disaronno liqueur
1 oz. Christian Brothers Honey Brandy
1 oz. Half and Half
2 heaping teaspoons of Pumpkin Butter

HOW TO MAKE IT ::
On a small plate, mix together three teaspoons of granulated sugar and three shakes of pumpkin spice. On second small plate add five tablespoons water. Dip glass rims into water briefly then dip into sugar mixture to rim glasses in pumpkin sugar. Add all ingredients to an ice-filled shaker. Shake well and use a fine wire strainer to double strain the mixture into cocktail glasses.

10-fall-cocktails-cover

 

COCKTAILS FOR A CROWD ~ A SANGRIA ADVENTURE!

Ahhh it’s finally time…summertime is right around the corner and the entertaining season is upon us. What a better way to spend some time soaking up that extra Vitamin D than to gather with friends and family outdoors and throw a party? As the days get warmer and the sun burns brighter, nothing welcomes the season like an ice-cold cocktail, but serving cocktails to a crowd can burden you with mixing cocktails vs. mingling with guests. So we have the perfect crowd-pleasing—and summer loving—cocktail plan. SANGRIA!

Sangria is the Spanish name for a sugar-sweetened wine and fruit cocktail. Rumored to be first introduced to the US at the 1964 World’s Fair, Sangrias are a seasonal favorite for spring and summer, which is why they are a great choice for outdoor grilling and parties.
The fun part about Sangria is that there are endless combinations of wine and fruit for you to choose from. Feel like peaches? There’s a Sangria for that! How about apples + oranges and a little lemon? There’s a Sangria for that, too!

Better yet, Sangrias are meant to be made ahead of time, saving you prep time on party day. To get you started, we’ve created a simple and light white wine Sangria, with some ideas for fun presentation.

Let’s get this party started!

DECORATIVE ICE

Sangria is made in batches so you need a lot of ice to cool the large volume of liquid. To add in a fun and functional element to your Sangria, consider putting a little time into making a decorative ice mold to keep things stylish and cool! We love Tovolo’s Sphere Ice Molds as the perfect accent to your Sangria. Adding citrus pieces to the slow melting 2.5” sphere brings out the added flavor of your cocktail as it melts. With just three easy steps you’re on your way to beautiful ice!

Gidget_Ice1Step One:

Select the fruit you’ll use in your Sangria. Lemons and oranges are great choices, as are a few limes. Slice your citrus fruit thinly and set aside. Try a citrus peeler for a long strand of lemon or orange.

Gidget_Ice2Step Two:

Arrange fruit inside of the mold. You can wedge pieces into the mold or curl the citrus strand and place into sphere. Slowly pour water into mold up to the fill line and cover. Freeze overnight.

 

 

Gidget_Ice3Step Three:

Run molds under warm water to release and place into bowl. Keep in freezer until ready to add to your Sangria.

 

 

 

ENDLESS SUMMER SANGRIA
GidgetEndlessSummer 2
Now that you’ve got your ice made, this Sangria is ideal for a crowd and makes for a delicious and memorable party drink. For our wine we went with a Sauvignon Blanc, a wine often described as crisp, elegant, and fresh. Add a little brandy and other summer-loving fruits and your guests will polish off every last drop. Cheers to an Endless Summer!

TOOLS :: Pitcher, large stirring spoon, strainer + punch bowl or beverage dispenser
GLASS :: Highball
EXTRAS :: large ice cubes {they minimize melting} and fruit for garnish
SERVINGS :: 15-20 cocktails

INGREDIENTS
1.5L bottle Sauvignon Blanc
1/3 c. sugar
1 1/2 c. Brandy {We used Christian Brothers Honey Brandy}
1/2 c. Triple Sec
1/4 c. fresh squeezed orange juice
1/4 c. fresh squeezed lemon juice {Meyer lemons}
1-2 thinly sliced apples
1-2 thinly sliced oranges
1 thinly sliced lemon
1 1/2 c. Club Soda

Pour wine and sugar into pitcher and stir to combine until sugar dissolves. Add Brandy, Triple Sec and fruit juices and stir to combine. Add apples and oranges only and chill mixture overnight. Make garnishes and set aside. Just before serving, add lemons and club soda, stirring to combine mixture. Pour mixture and fruit into ice-filled beverage dispenser. Provide ice and glasses. Stir Sangria every hour to ensure flavors combine.

Your fancy-schmancy ice spheres look just amazing as they chill your Endless Summer Sangria!

Your fancy-schmancy ice spheres look just amazing as they chill your Endless Summer Sangria!

Leprechaun’s Kiss – St. Patrick’s Day Cocktail

How many times will you hear, “Kiss Me! I’m Irish!”on St. Patrick’s Day? This simple cocktail provides a fun twist on an classic and gives you an after-dinner drink option with the flavor of a Thin Mint or Peppermint Patty (no pun intended!). Besides, don’t you think that kissing a leprechaun would be sweet?! Read how to make our Leprechaun’s Kiss below and then take a look at our other St. Patrick’s Day lucky green cocktails we put together for our partner, TheGoodStuff!

We think that a green cocktail in your hand counts as wearing green for St. Pat's so ENJOY!

We think that a green cocktail in your hand counts as wearing green for St. Pat’s so ENJOY!

LEPRECHAUN’S KISS

TOOLS :: Shaker
GLASS :: Martini
SERVINGS :: 2 cocktails
INGREDIENTS ::

  • 2 oz. Creme de Menthe {green}
  • 2 oz. Creme de Cacao {white}
  • 2 oz. Heavy cream {in a pinch, you can use half-and-half}

HOW TO MAKE IT ::
Add all ingredients to a shaker and fill with fresh ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Gidget_LeprechaunsKiss

TASTE THE SEASON :: HOLIDAY LIQUEURS

When the holiday season comes around, we can’t help but indulge in food and drink spiced with classic holiday flavors like gingerbread, peppermint, vanilla and the ever-sweet cinnamon. This time every year, drink manufacturers introduce their long-awaited seasonally spiced products. In order for you to take full advantage of these flavor wonders, we’ve found a number of holiday liquors that may help you to step away from that Pumpkin Spice Latte and embrace the flavors of December with a few delish cocktails! Three holiday liqueurs, eight cocktail choices. For a full list of cocktails visit The Good Stuff, and get your holiday imbibing started with the cocktail we created below. Oh, joyful yuletide!

THE QUEEN’S MEN
The first gingerbread man is credited to Queen Elizabeth I, who knocked the socks off visiting dignitaries by presenting them with one baked in their own likeness. Cheers to all the Queen’s gingerbread-men!

TheQueensMenTitle

TOOLS :: Cocktail shaker, bar spoon
GLASS :: Martini or coupe
EXTRAS ::  cinnamon stick for garnish
SERVINGS :: 2 cocktails

INGREDIENTS :

  • 4 oz. Aged Rum {you can substitute with Bourbon if you’d like}
  • 2 oz. Hiram Walker Gingerbread Liqueur
  • 1 oz. Tuaca
  • Good splash of Cointreau
  • 1 heaping barspoon of Fig Butter {Trader Joe’s has a great one}

HOW TO MAKE IT ::
In an ice-filled cocktail shaker, add all ingredients. Shake well {shake it like you mean it!} and double strain mixture evenly between two cocktail glasses. Garnish each drink with a cinnamon stick.

BLACK BETTY TO THE RESCUE

Quite frankly, I’ve had a rough day. It’s been one of those days when, as you power down your laptop, all you can think of is “Uncle…I’m done!” Well tonight I decided that I needed a nice little cocktail to ease into my evening. I needed something comfort-driven…something dark. So I had a mini-Test Kitchen moment and invented a delish, comforting wonder…BLACK BETTY. Sounds a little adventurous, a little darling but with a name like Betty, a happy friend. So as we head into the stressful holidays, may you also find the joy of Betty. Black Betty to the rescue. Bam-ba-lam!

BLACK BETTY

Feeling better already. Thanks Betty!

Feeling better already. Thanks Betty!

TOOLS :: Cocktail shaker
GLASS :: Martini {or an ice-filled Old Fashioned if you’re into the ice thing – both work}
EXTRAS ::  thin string of orange peel for garnish
SERVINGS :: 2 cocktails

INGREDIENTS ::
4 oz. Bulleit Bourbon
1 1/2 oz. Cassis Liqueur {blackcurrant liqueur}
1 1/2 oz. Brown Sugar simple syrup {brown sugar-to-water, 1:1}
4 good shakes of FEE Brothers Black Walnut Bitters

HOW TO MAKE IT ::
In an ice-filled cocktail shaker, add all ingredients. Shake well {shake it like you mean it!} and strain mixture evenly between two cocktail glasses. For garnish, twist orange peel over drink to release oils and add to cocktail.

NOTE :
Cassis is a great addition to your home bar. The Blackcurrant flavor is robust and yet light at the same time and a nice break from other seasonal flavors. Besides, it’s the only ingredient you need to make a Kir Royale cocktail! That’s right! Add a half shot of this to champagne and voila! Kir Royale. Delish!

SKIP THE PUMPKIN PIE :: Thanksgiving DESSERT Cocktails

After Thanksgiving dinner most people dive head first into a slice of pie. Tradition generally calls for pecan pie or pumpkin pie with a big dollop of whipped cream. This year we’ve decided to tempt you to skip that plate (or even add to it) and dive into these yummy Thanksgiving dessert cocktails instead. There’s no better way to unwind from your Thanksgiving holiday efforts, and we think making a cocktail happens to be a lot easier (and faster) than baking a pie. And it’s also a great way to perk you up after all that nap-inducing turkey!

To check out all 6 dessert recipes, visit The Good Stuff online magazine HERE. We created a G+LaR original cocktail for the article, happily named AUNTIES APPLE PIE MARTINI. We figured that just about everyone has an Auntie who makes the best apple pie at Thanksgiving. We’ve given that classic pie an upgrade with this delicate, refined cocktail. The spicy flavors of Rum compliment the carmel apple and honey ingredients for a drink even your Auntie will enjoy!

AUNTIE’S APPLE PIE MARTINI

A true crowd-pleaser for Thanksgiving dessert ~ Auntie's Apple Pie Martini

A true crowd-pleaser for Thanksgiving dessert ~ Auntie’s Apple Pie Martini

TOOLS :: Cocktail shaker, small plates (2)
GLASS :: Martini
EXTRAS ::  thin slice of apple + cinnamon sugar for garnish
SERVINGS :: 2 cocktails

INGREDIENTS ::
4 oz. Dark Spiced Rum {we went with Captain Morgans}
4 oz. Hiram Walker Carmel Apple Liqueur
2 oz. Honey Liqueur {Christian Brothers works well}
1 oz. Maple syrup
1/2 oz. Half-and-Half creamer

HOW TO MAKE IT ::
In an ice-filled cocktail shaker, add all ingredients. Shake well {shake it like you mean it!} and strain mixture evenly between two cocktail glasses. For garnish, on a small plate mix granulated sugar with cinnamon until combined. On another plate pour small amount of maple syrup – about 1 tablespoon. Cut thin slices from apple and run the skin side through maple syrup then coat with cinnamon sugar mixture. Garnish each drink with apple slice.

FREEDOM COCKTAIL FOR THE 4TH OF JULY

We’ve decided that there is no better way to enjoy the 4th of July than celebrating our independence surrounded by friends, family and a delicious cocktail. Get into that patriotic spirit with these five freedom cocktails to help you raise a glass and give a toast to America the beautiful!

White wine lovers tend to enjoy the fresh citrus and fruit flavors often found in summer wines. Made with lemons, oranges and limes with a hint of rich Brandy, this sangria captures all those summertime flavors. As a host, you’ll love this make-ahead recipe since it is a self-serve punch your guests can enjoy pouring on their own.

Star Spangled Sangria
If you want to get your 4th of July party started with a little red, white and booze, mix up a batch of this delish sangria. Your guests will be whistling Dixie before the fireworks even start.

star-spangled-sangria

Tools :: Pitcher, tall barspoon
Glass :: Highball
Servings :: 6 cocktails

Ingredients ::
1 bottle of white wine (Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier or Pinot Gris are all good choices)
1/3 cup white sugar
3 oranges, 1 lemon, 1 lime and 1 Granny Smith apple, all sliced
4 oz. Brandy
½ liter of Club Soda or Ginger ale (for those with a sweeter tooth!)

Directions ::
Pour wine in the pitcher and squeeze the juice wedges from the orange, lemon and lime into the wine. Add brandy and sugar, stirring to combine. Toss in the fruit wedges (leaving out seeds if possible). Chill mixture overnight. Add ginger ale or club soda just before serving.

Before you shop :: Sangria is all about adapting the recipe with fruit that you enjoy. Try adding diced mango, cubed pineapples, sliced strawberries, peaches, a handful of fresh blueberries, raspberries, kiwi, a shot or two of pineapple juice or even a little spiced rum!

 

TAX DAY RELIEF ~ THE CORPSE REVIVER

Regardless of whether you did your taxes yourself or paid someone to trudge through the effort on your behalf, let’s face it – taxes are no fun. They’re exhausting and stressful and once finished, we’re often left feeling relieved but dead tired. We’ve come up with a way to revive your spirits! Awaken you from the toll taxes have taken on your life! Now that Tax Day is done, we want you to celebrate in style with a CORPSE REVIVER No2!

Aptly named because of it’s purported ability to bring a painfully hung-over person back to some semblance of life, the CORPSE REVIVER No2 dates all the way back to 1930 and provides delicious citrus notes and a well balanced sweet, floral flavor with the use of Lillet Blanc and gin.

Even Ben Franklin himself stated, “in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes”. Well, here at Gidget+LaRue we are done with our taxes and we’re excited to have you try this wonderfully enlivening – and classic – cocktail to get back out there and live a little!

CORPSE REVIVER No2

Taxes are done ~ time to come alive with this classic!

Taxes are done ~ time to come alive with this classic!

TOOLS :: Shaker
GLASS :: Martini or coupe
EXTRAS ::  Cherry – optional
SERVINGS :: 1 cocktail

INGREDIENTS* ::
1 oz. Gin
1 oz. Cointreau
1 oz. Lillet Blanc
1 oz. fresh squeezed lemon juice
½ oz. Absinthe

 HOW TO MAKE IT ::

  • Add absinthe to chilled glass. Swirl to coat insides of glass. Set aside.
  • Add remaining ingredients to shaker filled with ice and shake it like you mean it!
  • Strain into the absinthe coated glass
  • Garnish with cherry (optional)