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Video: Valentine’s Day cocktails

TODAY recipes
updated 2/11/2009 12:05:33 PM ET 2009-02-11T17:05:33

Recipe: L’Amour de Fleur

  • Drink
  • 1 ounce pink peppercorns
  • 1 ounce kosher salt
  • 2 ounces sugar
  • For the drink
  • 2 ounces gin
  • 1 ounce fresh lime juice
  • 1 ounce simple syrup
  • 1/2 ounce Rothman and Winter crème de violette (Available at Astor Wines and Morrell)
  • 4-6 mint leaves
  • 1 pinch dried lavender flowers (available at Dean and DeLuca and Kalustyan’s); give them a good crush before you drop them in the shaker
  • Edible pansy flowers (optional; available at Kalustyan’s)

For the drink’s spice rim: Coarsely grind pink peppercorns in either a spice grinder, mortar and pestle, or mini-processor; mix with salt and sugar in a bowl, then pour onto a plate. Moisten a rocks glass with simple syrup, then dip it into the spice mixture. (There should be enough spice mixture left over for several cocktails.)

For the drink (serves 1): Combine all of the ingredients in a shaker; add ice, shake, and then pour through a julep or other fine strainer into an ice-filled, spice-rimmed rocks glass. Garnish with an edible flower sprinkled with a bit of the spice mixture.

Recipe: The Honeysuckle Rouge

  • For spiced red wine and honey syrup
  • 2 bottles inexpensive red wine
  • 3 star anise pods
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 5 cloves
  • Zest of 1 orange*
  • Zest of 1 lime*
  • Zest of 1 grapefruit*
  • Zest of 1 lemon*
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 cups honey
  • 1 cup hot water
  • For the drink
  • 2 ounces Anejo Tequila
  • 2 ounces Spiced Red Wine and Honey Syrup
  • 1/2 ounce lemon juice
  • Thin round of lemon for garnish in cocktail

For the Spiced Red Wine and Honey Syrup: Combine all the ingredients, except for the honey and hot water, in a large pot, bring to boil and reduce to roughly 1 pint (about 25 minutes at a hard boil). Pour through a fine strainer and set aside. Stir honey and water together until fully mixed. Combine one pint of the spiced red wine with one pint of the honey syrup. The spiced red wine and honey syrup will keep in a refrigerator for a week and freezes well, too.

*Save fruit for juicing or eating.

For the drink (serves 1): Combine tequila, spiced red wine and honey syrup, lemon juice, and ice in cocktail shaker. Shake and strain into a chilled martini glass, then garnish with a thin slice of lemon.

Recipe: Sparkling Sunset

  • For the pomegranate syrup
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 quart pomegranate juice*
  • For the drink
  • 3/4 ounces pomegranate syrup
  • 1 ounce fresh orange juice
  • 1 ounce Plata (silver) tequila
  • 2 ounces dry sparkling wine

For the Pomegranate Syrup: Combine sugar and water in a medium-size pot over high heat, and boil until the syrup thickens and uniform bubbles appear on top (around 15 minutes; do not allow syrup to caramelize). Reduce the heat to low, and slowly, carefully add the pomegranate juice, stirring constantly. Turn off the heat, cool, and refrigerate. The Pomegranate Syrup will keep for a week and freezes well.

*Juice fruit like you would a grapefruit: Cut it in half and then use a countertop citrus juicer to extract the juice.

For the drink (serves 1): Pour pomegranate syrup into a flute. Combine tequila, orange juice and ice in a cocktail shaker, then shake. Using the back of a spoon, strain the liquid into the flute, on top of the pomegranate syrup. Top with the sparkling wine, then serve to guests with a small spoon and encourage them to stir the ingredients together.


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