It was not long ago that ciders were far and few between, but now, ciders are popping up everywhere across the country. From dry, tiny bubble-style (like a fine French Champagne) to spiced, and fruit-forward (think pear or raspberry, and even chai). There’s something for everyone’s taste.
A Rhuby Rum Cider Cocktail featuring dark rum,
grapefruit and pomegranate juices, and chai cider!
Photo by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen®
Cider is also fantastic as a mixer for cocktails too! Cider cocktails are a growing trend in bars and restaurants, and I have had so much fun creating new cider twists. For instance, have you ever had a mojito with a splash of crisp dry cider instead of the usual soda water? Or how about a whiskey sour topped with a blackberry cider.
Ciders are just the thing for sunny weather sipping. Friends and family gather for picnics, and patio parties – all of which call for cocktails batched for a crowd. One of my favorites is sangria, like in my Pear & Blackberry Sangria! It is so delicious to make this time of year with all the great fruit that is coming to their peak. Grab a local cider at the farmers market, add in a little light rum, and then sliced seasonal fruits. If it needs a bit of sweetness add a touch of local honey. Let it sit overnight to infuse in the refrigerator, then fill up a big pitcher and bring it out on the deck for leisurely sipping in style!
Cheers to summer with some sunny ciders. And for more inspired sipping, make sure to check out my Spiked column in CIDERCRAFT Magazine! –Kathy
Pear & Blackberry Sangria
Blackberries can be switched out for raspberries or strawberries depending upon what’s peak of season at your local market.
Makes about 4-6 servings
1/4 cup water
2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup blackberries
1 1/2 – 2 Tbsp. blackberry honey
2 Tbsp. fresh orange juice
2 Tbsp. brandy or cognac
1 (22 oz) bottles Crispin Natural Hard Pear Cider Lion Belge
Garnish: fresh blackberries and sliced pear
In a blender cup combine the water, lemon juice and blackberries. Process until smooth. Then strain through a fine mesh strainer and discard solids. Add the honey, orange juice and brandy and stir until honey is dissolved. Refrigerate for up to 2 days.
When ready to serve combine the blackberry mixture with the chilled cider in a large container. Add the berries and pear. Serve over ice
Recipe by Kathy Casey Liquid Kitchen® – www.LiquidKitchen.com