About five years ago or so, I attended a tasting at a nearby liquor store, which included something I’d never heard of at the time – St-Germain Elderflower Liqueur. When the company representative began his spiel about the product, I was surprised that he wasn’t pushing me to immediately taste it, either on its own or in a cocktail – instead, oddly enough, he wanted me to smell it, which I did. It was then that I understood why he wanted me to take a sniff before sipping – the uniqueness of its aroma made me even more curious about its flavor. So, instead of him begging me to sample it in a cocktail, I was the one who implored him for a taste.
From that point on, I was smitten and have been a loyal customer ever since. You will always find at least one bottle of the stuff in my home – actually, one bottle in either my fridge or freezer and one gift set on the side, just in case I need to have a present ready for someone at the last minute. (The gift set, by the way, is quite nice as it includes a carafe and stirrer as well as a collection of cocktail recipes)
Some of my favorite drinks including St-Germain are the signature St-Germain cocktail, London Lemonade and something called The St-Germargarita. Here are their recipes:
The St-Germain Cocktail
This one is pretty easy to make as it is equal parts of St-Germain, club soda and Champagne in an ice-filled Collins glass; stir it up a bit and sip through a straw. For me, it’s the perfect was to spend cocktail hour on a sultry summer day.
The London Lemonade is one that I happened to stumble upon at one of my favorite seafood restaurants in Manhattan; after sampling it for the first time, I asked my regular server to get me the recipe from the bartender and he supplied me with what follows:
Fill a pint glass or shaker with ice, then squeeze the juice from an entire lemon into it. Add 2 ounces of gin (the restaurant recommends Hendricks, but I prefer Bulldog), then 1 ounce of St-Germain and shake. Pour into an ice-filled Collins glass (or simply use the ice from your shaker/pint glass) and finally, top it all off with Champagne (i.e., any sparkling wine, preferably something dry).
As you may have guessed, this is merely your basic margarita which uses St-Germain instead of triple sec, Cointreau or whatever it is you normally would use for a sweet liqueur in your recipe.
If you’ve never heard of or tried St-Germain in your cocktails, I strongly urge you to do so as soon as you possibly can. While it might be hyperbole to insist that it’s impossible to make a bad cocktail with St-Germain, I’ll maintain that even if you wanted to, you’d have to try really, really hard.
Are you on Facebook? If so, then you might want to consider visiting St-Germain’s Fan Page and adding them among your “Likes” because they have a tendency to post many other interesting cocktail recipes there as well.
Until next time Drinking Made Easy fans, please remember the words of the great French philosopher Rene Descartes, who said, “I drink, therefore I am!”
The Virtual Nihilist
New York City, NY