Cocktail of the Week: Winter Bourbon Smash

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It rained today. And if you’ve been following the news here in California, you’d know that rain is a pretty big deal right now. Besides alleviating, if only by a very little, the drought the state is experiencing the weather also made actually feel like Winter. To honor the rain, and the mood it established,I decided to make this winter smash that D had mentioned to me earlier this month.

I’d never made a smash before and this isn’t your standard anyway, playing on the rule that a seasonal fruit should be in the drink by using a jam or preserve. But, it did sound delicious and sitting on the couch, sipping this cocktail while comfortably wrapped in a blanket while listening to the rain fall outside was too wonderful an image not to make reality!

The ingredients
The ingredients

Winter Bourbon Smash

  • 1 oz. raspberry jam (any jam or preserve will do)
  • 1 oz. bourbon whisky
  • 1/2 oz. TripleSec
  • 1 to 1 1/2 oz. orange juice
  • splash of club soda

Add 1/2 cup ice, preserves, bourbon, triple sec and orange juice to a shaker and shake vigorously for 15 seconds.  Pour into serving glass with a few ice cubes and top with a splash of club soda. Garnish with orange slice.

PS – Depending on the size of the holes in your cocktail shaker you might have to use a jam that doesn’t have a lot of fruit chunks and seeds in it or be comfortable scooping infused jam out of the shaker after draining out as much of the cocktail as you can.

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Another wonderful drink! The bourbon and raspberry jam complement each other perfectly. The two work on each other smoothing out their rough edges, the bourbon’s bite and the jam’s sweetness, until you are left with something eminently drinkable.

Cocktail of the Week: Mai Tai

2013-09-22 19.43.05We had a big rainstorm this weekend, the nights are cooler, and the days aren’t boiling. Summer is definitely on its way out! And to send it off in style I decided to make one last fruity, summery drink: the Mai Tai. Okay, I was actually scrambling to find some decent Martini glasses to make the classic martini in when D recommended we try a Mai Tai instead. It helped that we had most of what we needed for them anyway, I’m glad she recommended them!

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The ingredients

Mai Tai

  • 1 oz. dark rum
  • 1 oz. amaretto
  • 3 oz. orange juice
  • 3 oz. pineapple juice
  • grenadine

Fill glass with ice cubes, add rum and amaretto, add juices until glass is full, and finally add a splash of grenadine.

I'm having a hard time thinking of a better way to say goodbye to summer!
I’m having a hard time thinking of a better way to say goodbye to summer!

Turns out Mai Tais are a great way to say goodbye to Summer and welcome Fall! These were delicious. Fruity, sugary, and addictive! The amaretto and rum are the perfect complement to the orange and pineapple juices. Moving into Fall I’ll be making more warm drinks but on those cloudy days when I’m dreaming of blue skies and the sun I think a Mai Tai just might help me remember…


Cocktail of the Week: Mimosa

It's what classy, lazy people drink...
It’s what classy, lazy people drink…

The last two weeks in the California legislature’s calendar are very, very busy times for me. I get to look forward to 12 to 24 hour days… So, that being the case I decided to keep this week’s cocktail simple. It also helped that I also already had everything I need to make them.

Mimosas are sophisticated drinks for sophisticated people. Also, an alcoholic’s breakfast. I went a quarter in college where I had a Mimosa for breakfast every day. I didn’t do any better in my studies. But, I did feel superior to everyone else in my classes!

So simple even the most decadent, hung over, wastrel could throw it together!
So simple even the most decadent, hung over, wastrel could throw it together!


  • orange juice
  • champagne (chilled)
  • orange wheel, but I prefer fresh berries

In a champagne saucer or flute, fill about a quarter with orange juice and top up with champagne. Garnish with wheel or toss berries into drink.

It tastes better when you drink it from real crystal...
It tastes better when you drink it from real crystal…

Mimosas taste as good as they did when I was in college! Well, better actually cause I’m not using $5 champagne anymore! Freshly squeezed orange juice would have made this drink even better. I’m busy this week though so that’ll have to wait. Mimosas are great because, like Bloody Marys, you can have them any time of the day and not be considered a lush!