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  • Writer's pictureluisanapa

COCKTAILS to add MIRTH not GIRTH (party pitchers)

Each recipe makes 6-12 cocktails depending on generosity of the pour Bloody Mary

1.5 cups vodka 5 cups tomato juice (or V-8 or equivalent) 4 TB fresh lemon juice 4 TB fresh lime juice 3 TB beef broth 2 tsp horseradish 1.5 TB Worcestershire sauce 1/2 tsp celery salt 1/2 tsp kosher salt 1/2 tsp ground pepper 6-10 dashes hot sauce (leave the bottle out so guests can add more)

Optional additions: 1 tsp minced garlic, 1 tsp crushed celery seeds, 1 tsp soy sauce, 1 TB olive juice, 1-2 pinches cayenne pepper, 1 cup club soda Note: For those who prefer the first sip to be really just a sip of flavored vodka, after filling the glasses, pour about 1 TB vodka right on top so that’s the first thing that hits your taste buds ~ ~ ~ Mix everything together in a non-reactive pitcher and refrigerate at least an hour (or chill ingredients ahead while keeping the vodka in the freezer) If desired, wet the edge of glasses w/ lime and dip in kosher salt mixed w/ ground pepper Give pitcher a good stir and pour in highball or double old-fashioned glasses filled w/ ice Garnish with a celery stick that still has the leaves attached Optional garnishes: olives, pickled onions, cherry tomatoes, and/or shrimp on a skewer, long pickled green beans or carrot sticks, lemon and lime wedges, long sticks of cucumber ~ ~ ~ Variations: Bloody Caesar As above, substituting Clamato juice for the tomato juice (this is the most popular cocktail in Canada) Garnish with clams, shrimp, or raw oysters on a skewer plus lime wedges Optional additions: 1 TB Old Bay Seasoning, 1/2 cup clam juice Bloody María A basic Bloody Mary that substitutes Tequila for vodka Garnish with jalapeño peppers or long strips of sweet yellow and green peppers Cajun Mary The rim of the glass is dipped in smoked paprika salt and the Bloody Mary is made with chipotle-infused vodka, crawfish stock, and black garlic Garnish with shrimp, olives, pearl onions, and a tiny ear of pickled baby corn Virgin Marys Any of the above, just omit the vodka Cosmopolitan Fizz

2 cups vodka 1.5 cups 100% cranberry juice 1.5 cups club soda 1/2 cup fresh lime juice 1/2 cup orange liqueur (Cointreau, Grand Marnier, Curacao, Triple sec)

~ ~ ~ Shake with crushed ice, then strain into a chilled martini glass with rocks Garnish with a curl of orange peel and/or lime wedge on the rim Optional: put 3 raspberries in each glass or 1-2 cubes of Raspberry Ice (see the Fruit Ice recipe) and if not quite sweet enough, add a little stevia and/or 1-2 tsp sugar syrup Cosmo-Pomitan Fizz

2 cups vodka 1/2 cup orange liqueur 1 cup 100% pomegranate juice 1.5 cups club soda 1/2 cup fresh lime juice 1 cup orange juice

~ ~ ~ Shake with crushed ice, then strain into a chilled martini glass with rocks Garnish with a wedge of orange and a curl of orange or lime peel Daiquiri

2 cups rum 1 cup lime juice 2 cups lemon tea 1 packet Stevia

~ ~ ~ Shake with crushed ice, then strain into a chilled martini glass over rocks Garnish with lime wedges Note: Bigelow, Twining’s, and Lipton all make excellent lemon teas ~ ~ ~ Variation: Frozen Strawberry Daiquiri

2 cups light rum 2 cups strawberries (fresh or frozen) 2 cups ice 1/4 cup orange liqueur 1/4 cup lime juice

~ ~ ~ Put all ingredients into a blender pitcher and whirl on high until well mixed and frothy Garnish with a large strawberry, a lime wedge, and/or a sprig of mint Optional: add 1-2 packets stevia if berries are not sweet enough and/or 1-2 tsps sugar syrup Gin and Tonic

2 cups gin 3 cups Zevia zero calorie tonic OR 3 cups seltzer + 6 dashes of Bitters 1 cup lemon tea 1/2 cup lime juice

~ ~ ~ Shake with crushed ice, then strain into chilled old-fashioned glasses over with ice; garnish with lime wedges Note: Regular tonic is as sugary as a soft drink and ‘diet’ is loaded with artificial sweeteners—instead try Zevia Naturally Light or Indian Tonic, or go for the seltzer/bitters combo instead; note: quinine should be avoided by pregnant women


2 cups tequila 1 cup fresh lime juice 1 cup Cointreau 1 cup orange juice 1 cup orange tea

~ ~ ~ Shake with 1 cup crushed ice, then strain into chilled margarita glasses (or use martini or wine glasses); if preferred, dampen edge of glass and dip in coarse salt first Garnish with lime wedges ~ ~ ~ Variation: Frozen Margarita

2 cups tequila 1 cup fresh lime juice 1 cup Cointreau 2 cups ice

~ ~ ~ Blend until ice turns to slush Garnish with lime wedges and a little straw plus tiny umbrellas if you’re feeling festive


1 bottle sparkling wine 3 cups orange juice 1 cup club soda 1/2 cup triple sec

~ ~ ~ Line up 8-10 champagne flutes, then add in order: club soda, champagne, o.j., triple sec Variation: Tangerine Mimosa As above, substituting tangerine juice for the orange juice Mojito

2 cups rum 1 cup fresh lime juice 2 cups club soda 1 cup mint leaves 2 packets stevia thin slices of lime

~ ~ ~ Muddle the mint leaves and stevia and put 1 TB in the bottom of each highball glass, add a long straw, fill the glasses halfway with crushed ice, add a few lime slices, then fill with more crushed ice Mix the rest of the ingredients together in a pitcher and fill the glasses almost to the top Garnish with a sprig of mint and a wedge of lime Optional: add 1-2 cups of chilled Tea Forté mojito marmalade tea Piña Colada

1 cup rum 1 cup pineapple juice 2 cups coconut water 1 cup plain or lemon Greek yogurt and/or 1 cup frozen banana rounds 2 cups ice

~ ~ ~ Put all ingredients into a blender pitcher and blend on high until well mixed and frothy Pour into a stemmed parfait-type glass or a wine glass Garnish with half a pineapple ring or citrus slices Ramos Gin Fizz aka New Orleans Fizz

1/2 cup chilled lemon juice 1/2 cup chilled lime juice 1 cup gin (that’s been kept in the freezer) 2 ice cubes 1/2 cup plain or lemon yogurt 2 packets stevia 2 TB orange flower water 1 cup liquid egg whites 1 cup chilled club soda

~ ~ ~ Put the lemon juice, lime juice, gin, ice, yogurt, stevia, and orange flower water into a blender pitcher and blend on medium until well mixed; remove to a large glass pitcher Add the egg whites to the blender and process several minutes until light and frothy (they will double or triple in volume) Put some of the yogurt mixture back into the blender and whirl briefly, then add the contents of the blender to the pitcher and use a long whisk to stir everything together, using a light over/under motion Line up the glasses, add a few small ice cubes, then fill about three quarters of the way with the gin-egg white mixture; tip the glasses slightly and pour the club soda down one side to fill to top Collins glasses are traditional, but these also look appealing in large brandy snifters, big red wine glasses, or tall parfaits Garnish with a citrus slice or curl and add a sprig of mint if you’re feeling festive Sangria There are as many recipes for Sangria as there are people who make it. Spanish Rioja is the traditional wine, but it can be made with any red, white, or rosé; you don’t need a fine wine for this concoction since there are so many additions, but choose one that’s decent enough to be drunk on its own. The basic proportions are:

1 bottle chilled wine 1 or 2 cups orange juice 1/2 to 1 cup Cointreau or other brandy 2 apples cut in small chunks 1 packet of stevia + 1 TB sugar 1 lemon (preferably Meyer) and 1 lime cut into thin rounds 1 seedless orange cut lengthwise in quarters and then chunks and/or whole kumquats 2 cups chilled club soda

~ ~ ~ Pour the wine into a large glass pitcher, add the orange juice, brandy, cut fruit, sugar, and stevia Mix well and let stand in the refrigerator at least 1 hour (may make up to a day ahead); stir in club soda right before serving and pour into highball glasses or large wine goblets filled with ice Garnish with citrus slices or any fruit that contrasts with the color of the sangria and will sit on the rim Optional additions: cherries, grapes, or chunks of any fruit you like ~ ~ ~ Variations: Cantaloupe Sangria Make with rosé and add 4 cups puréed cantaloupe plus 1 cup small cantaloupe cut in chunks Frozen Sangria Mix the wine, brandy, stevia, fruit juice, and club soda together in a blender pitcher and freeze until slushy (it does not freeze solid due to the alcohol); purée in the blender, pour into a glass pitcher and stir in the fruit with a long wooden spoon Hot Spiced Sangria Mix all ingredients together in a large saucepan and heat over low heat 5 minutes or until well warmed (do not let it boil); remove from heat and let stand for at least 30 minutes for flavors to blend; reheat if desired and serve with a cinnamon stick; for a party, this can be made in a crockpot and left on low for hours—it’s best served with a ladle, but don’t leave a metal ladle sitting in the wine or it may produce an off flavor Non-Alcoholic Sangria Make with white or purple grape juice (or both) or sparkling apple cider Peach Sangria Make with white wine and add 1 cup peach nectar or peach purée plus peach slices Strawberry-Melon Sangria Make with rosé and add 4 cups puréed melon, 1 cup puréed strawberries, plus add bite-sized strawberries to the pitcher; if too thick, add another cup of club soda Sloe Gin Fizz

2 cups sloe gin 2 cups regular gin 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice 4 cups club soda 1 cup crushed ice

~ ~ ~ Stir together in a large pitcher, then strain into old-fashioned glasses filled with rocks Garnish with a lemon slice Spiced Pumpkin Cider

2 cups pumpkin purée (not pie mix) 4 cups apple cider 2 cups water 4 tsp pumpkin pie spice mix 1.5 cups rum 1 cinnamon stick per drink + ground cinnamon

~ ~ ~ Stir pumpkin purée, cider, water, and spice mix together in a large pot (to keep smooth, incorporate 1 TB liquid at a time to purée until thin enough not to clump when the rest of the liquid is added) Over medium heat, bring almost to a boil then reduce to low and simmer for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally; if too thick, add extra water Remove from heat and add the rum Serve in Irish coffee glasses or other heat-proof cups and garnish with one long cinnamon stick and a sprinkling of ground cinnamon Wine Coolers

1@ 750ml bottle of wine (red, white, rosé) 1 cup cran-raspberry juice (optional) 4 cups club soda 2 cups crushed ice

~ ~ ~

Line up 8-10 balloon wine glasses or champagne flutes, add the ice and club soda until glasses are about half full, add the cran-raspberry juice if using, then top up with wine

Garnish with citrus slices or curls and large strawberries

Optional: Add ice cubes made from pomegranate, cran-apple, or cran-raspberry juice

~ ~ ~

Variations: Apple-Royale Wine Coolers

As above, substituting 1 bottle sparkling apple juice for the club soda + ice cubes made from apple juice

Pomegranate-Wine Coolers

As above plus 3 cups pomegranate-white tea and 1/2 cup pomegranate juice

Raspberry-Wine Coolers

As above using a rosé, plus 1-2 TB Cassis; fill glasses with raspberry-ice

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