This is festive. It was the signature cocktail at our drop-in party last weekend. Providing a signature cocktail is festive in and of itself, but a Rosemary Citrus Spritzer feels seasonal, a bit dressy, and awfully fun just because of its sparkle. I love citrus in the winter, but it’s the rosemary that pulls this beverage from the brink of tang-like-pop-drink. The sweet and sour hits your palate first, then the herbal rosemary shows up to keep things interesting. Gin just adds another layer of cheer.
There are multiple up-sides to the signature cocktail situation: if you make a pitcher of one cocktail, you don’t have to spend all your time creating individual drinks for guests; there’s no pressure to stock your bar with every single alcohol and mixer that people usually request; if you generally offer only beer and wine because of ease/price/whatever, adding one signature cocktail only adds a little to the trouble and budget, but shows your effort and concern for various tastes.
Try the rosemary citrus spritzer as the cocktail offering at your next holiday fête. I like to set out a bottle of the syrup, a bottle of gin, a few bottles of sparkling water, an ice bucket, and glassware on our sideboard (actually a dresser). That way, people who prefer a non-alcoholic drink can make their own pretty, sparkly beverage too.
Rosemary Citrus Spritzer (slightly adapted from thekitchn)
Zest of 1 lemon, peeled off in thick strips with a vegetable peeler
Juice of 2 lemons
Juice of 2 oranges
3/4 cup sugar
4 sprigs fresh rosemary (4″ each)
Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, orange juice, sugar, and rosemary to a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Boil the mixture for one minute, stirring constantly, then remove the pan from the heat and let it sit for about 10 minutes. Strain out the solids and pour the syrup into a container. Refrigerate it until you’re ready to use it.
To serve, add ice to a glass, pour in as much gin as desired, add a couple of tablespoons of rosemary citrus syrup, and top with sparkling water. Stir and drink, happily.