The Cranberry Ginger Sparkler
Transforming a cocktail into a mocktail means finding a way to replace the flavor complexity of the alcohol in the cocktail version. That's why to create this mocktail I swapped out the sparkling wine in the original cocktail for ginger beer. In a cocktail, you don't necessarily want every ingredient to have a strong flavor profile but in a mocktail you do. Putting together the acidity of the lime, the tartness of the cranberry juice, and the spiciness of the ginger creates a mocktail bursting with flavor.
The importance of aroma
The first thing you notice about a cocktail is the smell. You know what I mean if you've ever had a cocktail with a sprig of mint or rosemary as a garnish.
The aroma component can be achieved with a garnish but there are other ways too. For example, your bartender might twist some citrus peel over the drink and run it along the rim of the glass.
When the element of smell is missing the drink feels incomplete.
There are all kinds of ways to create an aroma for a drink. I love herb sprigs and fruit garnishes. Creating a garnish that adds the sense of smell to the experience is a fun way to make a cocktail or mocktail your own. Let your creativity flow; throw some fruit on a cocktail stick, try citrus rounds attached to the rim of the glass, or make some candied fruit. See what you have on hand and have fun with it.
For this drink, I wanted the garnish to be a bit special. To do this, I made candied cranberries with ginger syrup instead of simple syrup. I coated cranberries in ginger syrup before rolling them in fine sugar. An extra kick of ginger hits your nose before you ever taste the drink. It's a fun extra that makes this drink pop.
The Cranberry Ginger Sparkler
- 2 oz/60 ml Unsweetened Cranberry Juice (100% juice, not cocktail)
- 4 oz/120 ml Ginger Beer, preferably Fever Tree
- 2 oz/60 ml Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice
Pour ginger beer into a collins glass filled with ice. Add lime and cranberry juice and give a quick stir. Add garnish. Enjoy.
Garnish options: Float candied cranberries on top or on a cocktail pick or slip a lime round into the side of the drink.
Gingery Candied Cranberries Recipe
- Clean, dry Cranberries (as many as you need for the drinks you plan to make)
- Ginger cocktail syrup to coat
Put the cranberries in a bowl and pour in enough syrup to coat them. Mix well to make sure all the cranberries are completely coated. Lay the cranberries on a piece of parchment paper on a quarter sheet pan and let dry for at least an hour or up to overnight in the refrigerator. Coat with Baker's Sugar (don't worry if you don't have Baker's Sugar, regular sugar will work just fine.) The berries are now ready to use.
Note: Going forward all measurements will be in both the British Imperial and metric so that all our members will be able to easily use the recipes.
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