San Diego is having an exceptionally hot and humid summer season. (Yes, we are spoiled….anything in the 80’s or above is a deal breaker for locals who find it difficult to comprehend humidity or anything other than idyllic mid-70’s). Here are some absolute stunners to wet-your-whistle...
Rosé Lillet with Bubbles:
Lillet is a delightful aperitif from Bordeaux. Made from Bordeaux grapes and herbs (the recipe is a carefully guarded secret), Lillet comes in 3 types: red, white & rosé. I was recently in Provence at a Julia Child cooking week and one of the chefs prepared a killer drink from the rosé version. It’s simple: equal parts of rosé Lillet and bubbles (the French version I had used Champagne, however, prosecco or any California dry bubbly would work). Serve it topped with a strawberry and voila!
This is one of my fave cocktails….summer or winter. Made from Italy’s Aperol (a neon orange colored aperitif made from bitter oranges, rhubarb and a some herbs), the spritz is currently one of the most beloved cocktails in all of Italy. The cocktails is easy to assemble: equal parts of Aperol and Prosecco, with a splash of soda water (or to keep it authentically Italian, San Pellegrino). Add ice and top with a slice of orange. Ciao, a dolce vita!
White Port and Tonic:
White Port is not easy to find in local liquor stores but totally worth the search! (Hint: you can buy it easily on the Internet.) White Port (make sure it’s the bone dry version) makes a perfect thirst-quenching aperitif. If you want to score some major points with foodies-in-the-know, serve it. Everyone will love it, and no one will have ever had it. The recipe is easy: equal parts of white dry port and tonic…add plenty of ice and a slice of lemon (sprig of mint optional). Cheers!
Limoncello with Club Soda:
I’ll never forget my first sip of the cocktail, and that’s something as it’s been about 15 years ago. I was handed this colorful libation by the hostess at a 4th of July party in San Francisco, and I’ve been a fan ever since. It’s easy-peasy: fill a glass with ice, add 2/3 club soda, 1/3 limoncello. Top with a slice of lemon, or even a strawberry is a nice color contrast. Sante!
Stay cool wherever you are summering.