Tag Archives: Cocktails

¡Feliz #NationalTequilaDay!

24 Jul

It was a steamy September night in 1988, and I was fresh off the plane from a formative,  college summer-abroad odyssey in Switzerland. The evening found me at a Mexican restaurant in Orange County, cross-eyed and basking in the after-effects of a bathtub-sized Cadillac margarita, spilling all of the summer’s indiscretions. To my then-boyfriend. Who sat there and fumed. Natch.

margarita

Okay, so he was a weenie anyway, but ever since then I stick to wine in order to (ahem) keep my tequila-inspired indiscretions to myself. Whoops! Uh, not that I have any today! Indiscretions, I mean (she said in case her husband, Señor Jim happened to be reading this post, which he always does because he’s the mucho-amazing-est husband in the world).

You’re probably thinking, “Whoa. Guess who just stepped in it.” And I have this to say: I did indeed step in it! I stepped into National Tequila Day! And I come bearing gifts.

First, my favorite interpretive dance to the song, Tequila, courtesy of Pee-Wee Herman. Click on the image to watch:

PEEWEE

Second, a full-on “Chica Power” article I wrote earlier this year about the world’s first female master tequila distiller, the salt-rimmed glass ceiling-shattering Maria Teresa Lara.

Meet the world's first female

Meet the world’s first female “Maestra Tequilera,” Maria Teresa Lara.

Next, a tequila recipe for tonight’s National Tequila Day fiesta. WARNING: Do not try this drink if you’ve been naughty in the past 48 hours. ¡Salud!

unnamed

Photo credit: CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa

Sangrita – Serves: 4

This recipe is courtesy of the JW Marriott Cancun. Another Marriott  property in Puerto Vallarta, by the way, has an in-house “tequila sommelier” who presents tequila tastings using tequila made from agaves grown on the property.

Ingredients:
1 ounce freshly squeezed orange juice
2 ounces freshly squeezed tomato juice
1 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
1/2 ounce grenadine
dash worcestershire sauce
dash of salt
dash of pepper
dash of Tabasco, or to taste

Preparation:
To prepare, mix all of the ingredients together in a container and let stand a few minutes; cooling is recommended.

¡Feliz #DiaDelMoscato! – Happy #NationalMoscatoDay!

9 May

Time to get your fiesta on, chicas y chicos!

Today is National Moscato Day, and to make sure you shine at the bar or dinner table tonight, here are three things to know about Moscato, and a yummy cocktail recipe from the fine folks at Gallo Family Vineyards. And for you smarty-pants out there, share your knowledge today during the #DiaDelMoscato Twitter party at  3 p.m. PST/6 p.m. EST. Be there or be cuadrado!

Now put on your drinking caps and savor these fun facts:

1. Moscato goes by different names in different countries. “Moscato” is Italian for Muscat, one of the oldest known grape varieties in the world. In Spain, it’s called Moscatel. Moscato is thought to be one of the few wines that actually tastes like the grape, and if you happen upon a Moscato vineyard, don’t freak out if bees and wasps are swarming the fruit of the vine. They’re drawn to the grape’s intoxicating floral and honey-like aroma and it’s decadent sweetness.

2. Moscato can be made in various styles. Moscato is one of the most versatile wines out there. You can have it sweet or dry, still or sparkling, or as a syrupy dessert wine. The wine can be white, pale pink or even red. If you love peach and citrus aromas, these are textbook Moscato scents.

3. Pair Moscato with fresh fruit, fruit-based desserts or spicy foods. Depending on which style of Moscato you’re drinking, there are mucho pairing options. A sweet Moscato can take the burn off of a spicy main course or complement the sweetness of fresh fruit or a fruit tart. A sparkling Moscato is an elegant aperitif and the perfect way to start a brunch.

OK, got all that? There’s a quiz later on. Not really. But here’s a delicious recipe from Gallo Family Vineyards you can enjoy today or any day of the year. ¡Salud!

El Full Disclosure: This is not an ad. And I did not receive free product or compensation for this post. I just like sharing mouthwatering recipes. Gracias, Gallo Family Vineyards!

GFV Moscato Mango Mojito

Moscato Mango Mojito

(serves 1)

Ingredients:

1.25 ounces Gallo Family Vineyards Moscato
1 lime, cut into eighths
5 leaves basil, plus more for garnish
.5-teaspoon demerara sugar
1 ounces white rum
1.25 ounces mango puree or mango nectar

Preparation:
Muddle lime, basil leaves, and sugar in the bottom of a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice, then add the moscato, white rum, and mango nectar. Shake and strain into an ice-filled rocks glass Garnish with a basil sprig.

 

A #Pisco Cocktail for Peruvian Independence Day

27 Jul

Break out the lomo saltado and the bottles of pisco, chicos y chicas: Tomorrow is 28 de julio, or Perú’s Independence Day ! I know I promised you part 3 in the Canadian wine series, but guess who’s up to her eyebrows in deadlines? So in lieu of the final installment in the Canadian wine series, I present you with a re-blog of a post that was a hit about this time last year: Señorita Vino’s very own “Caipirinka” recipe: A Peruvian twist on a Brazilian classic, with pisco (of course!) as the main ingredient. So shout it with me one more time: ¡Que viva el Perú, carajo! 

Variety, chicas y chicos, is the spice of life, so to add a little sabor to your weekend, it is my supreme pleasure to introduce my latest invention…the Caipirinka. It’s a refreshingly  exotic blend of mangoes, lime and pisco.

Yep, it’s like the Brazilian Caipirinha but with a two-fold Peruvian twist: 1). Pisco is the national drink of Perú*, and 2). Mangos grow happily in Perú. And of course, there’s 2a: Señorita Vino’s parents hail from the land of the Incas.

If you’re not familiar with pisco, it’s a clear alcoholic spirit made from grapes. Some say it’s comparable to Italy’s grappa and Greece’s ouzo. And  like grappa and ouzo, pisco can knock you flat on your asti spumante, so be forewarned: un poquito goes a long way.

Adding to the Caipirinka’s uniquely Peruvian flair is the mango. Perú is one of six countries that exports mangos to the U.S.  The mangos I used to make the Caipirinka were generously provided by the Mango Board, which probably had no idea I’d use them to make an alcoholic beverage.
In case anyone’s keeping track, this is arguably the world’s most nutrient-rich cocktail. Mangos contain more than 20 different types of nutrients and vitamins, and just one cup of mangos is 100 calories and provides 100% of your recommended vitamin C allowance. See? Señorita Vino cares muchísimo about the health (and girlish figures) of her readers.

I used fresh, pureed ataulfo mangos, the oblong, bright yellow fruit in the photo above. ¿Porqué ataulfo? Because this variety has no fibers and is as smooth as butter, making it a great option to blend in cocktails or fruit smoothies. Not only that, but the flesh is gloriously golden, calling to mind the gold treasure of the Inca empire. Now there’s a culture that literally worshipped its bling. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

So without further ado, here’s how you can add a little Inca gold to your Peruvian Independence Day celebration. Because we all have different palates (See “Vino 101”), you may want to adjust the amount of sugar, lime or pisco. If you do up the pisco content, Señorita Vino takes no responsabilidad if you wake up in an exotic land, covered in gold sequins and tropical bird feathers. ¡Salud!

*There is some debate between Perú and Chile as to which country ‘invented’ pisco. It was Perú, of course (see 2a above).

Señorita Vino’s Caipirinka 

(Serves 4)

Ingredients:

1 cup of ripe Ataulfo mangos (about 2), cubed

6 tablespoons of  sugar syrup (make ahead: Dissolve 8 tablespoons of baker’s sugar into 8 tablespoons of water in a pan over low heat. Bring to a boil, then boil for 1-2 minutes. Refrigerate. Keeps for about 2 weeks in the fridge).

8 ice cubes, cracked

4 key limes (or 2 regular limes), cut into small wedges. Save a few slices as a garnish, if desired.

4 teaspoons raw cane sugar, divided

4 ounces of pisco

3 additional ice cubes, cracked

In a blender, place the 8 cracked ice cubes, the mango and the sugar syrup. Blend until the mango is completely liquefied. Set aside. Place an equal amount of lime wedges into four small glasses. Add a teaspoon of raw cane sugar to each glass. With a muddler (see photo) or wooden spoon, crush the lime and sugar until it forms a paste.

Place the remaining three cracked cubes in a cocktail shaker. Add 2/3 cup of the mango puree and the pisco and shake until condensation forms on the shaker.

Shake it, chica!

Pour immediately into the cocktail glasses. Garnish with lime wedge if desired.

Put a Little Passion in Your Pisco

12 Apr

I’m baaaaaaaack! From vacation, that is.

Two weeks in Perú have left me jonesin’ for the latest spin on the Andean nation’s  cocktail of choice, the Pisco Sour. This popular new version features an intoxicating splash of passionfruit for an exotically fruity twist and can be found in trendy restaurants or bars from Lima to Cuzco and points beyond.

Passionfruit Pisco Sours, as enjoyed at Ache restaurant in Lima's Miraflores neighborhood.

Passionfruit Pisco Sours, as enjoyed at Ache restaurant in Lima’s Miraflores neighborhood.

Here’s Señorita Vino’s own take on a drink that will leave you longing for Llama Land. This cocktail is the perfect aperitif, or you can do what I’m doing and use it to cure a case of post-vacation blues.

Señorita Vino’s Passionfruit Pisco Sour

INGREDIENTS:

2 cups pisco

1 cup sugar

1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice, no seeds or pulp

1 cup passionfruit juice (you should be able to find this in an ethnic grocery store)

Angostura bitters (just a few drops’ll do ya!)

12 ice cubes, crushed

2 egg whites

METHOD:

Pour pisco, sugar, lime juice, passionfruit juice and a couple of drops of Angostura bitters into a blender and blend on medium speed until thoroughly mixed (two to five minutes). Next, add the crushed ice and the egg whites and blend again for about three minutes. Pour the mixture into small shot glasses and top with a drop of Angostura bitters.

¡Salud!

Serves about 8 (or four if no one has to drive!)

Happy Peruvian Independence Day–July 28

27 Jul

Yes, it’s a day early, but tomorrow is 28 de julio, or Perú’s Independence Day. It was on this day in 1821 that Perú broke away from Spanish rule, and ever since then, Peruvians around the world celebrate with plenty of pisco and pollo a la brasa. In honor of my ancestral nation’s independence (and because I’m too frantic studying for a Bordeaux exam to write an original post), I give you an oldie but a goodie – a previously published post about my first foray into mixology: The Caipirinka. Try it – I think you’ll enjoy it. And, ¡Que viva el Perú, carajo!

Variety, chicas y chicos, is the spice of life, so to add a little sabor to your weekend, it is my supreme pleasure to introduce my latest invention…the Caipirinka. It’s a refreshingly  exotic blend of mangoes, lime and pisco.

My latest brainchild: A pisco cocktail featuring mangos. Ooooh….aaaahhh!

Yep, it’s like the Brazilian Caipirinha but with a two-fold Peruvian twist: 1). Pisco is the national drink of Perú*, and 2). Mangos grow happily in Perú. And of course, there’s 2a: Señorita Vino’s parents hail from the land of the Incas.

If you’re not familiar with pisco, it’s a clear alcoholic spirit made from grapes. Some say it’s comparable to Italy’s grappa and Greece’s ouzo. And  like grappa and ouzo, pisco can knock you flat on your asti spumante, so be forewarned: un poquito goes a long way.

This Peruvian pisco is made from the quebranta grape.

Adding to the Caipirinka’s uniquely Peruvian flair is the mango. Perú is one of six countries that exports mangos to the U.S.  The mangos I used to make the Caipirinka were generously provided by the Mango Board, which probably had no idea I’d use them to make an alcoholic beverage.

But if anyone’s keeping track, this is arguably the world’s most nutrient-rich cocktail. Mangos contain more than 20 different types of nutrients and vitamins, and just one cup of mangos is 100 calories and provides 100% of your recommended vitamin C allowance. See? Señorita Vino cares muchísimo about the health (and girlish figures) of her readers.

Six varieties of mangos are available in the U.S.

I used fresh, pureed ataulfo mangos, the oblong, bright yellow fruit in the photo above. ¿Porqué ataulfo? Because this variety has no fibers and is as smooth as butter, making it a great option to blend in cocktails or fruit smoothies. Not only that, but the flesh is gloriously golden, calling to mind the gold treasure of the Inca empire. Now there’s a culture that literally worshipped its bling. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

So without further ado, here’s how you can add a little Inca gold to your Peruvian Independence Day celebration. Because we all have different palates (See “Vino 101”), you may want to adjust the amount of sugar, lime or pisco. If you do up the pisco content, Señorita Vino takes no responsabilidad if you wake up in an exotic land, covered in gold sequins and tropical bird feathers. ¡Salud!

*There is some debate between Perú and Chile as to which country ‘invented’ pisco. It was Perú, of course (see 2a above).

Señorita Vino’s Caipirinka 

(Serves 4)

Ingredients:

1 cup of ripe Ataulfo mangos (about 2), cubed

6 tablespoons of  sugar syrup (make ahead: Dissolve 8 tablespoons of baker’s sugar into 8 tablespoons of water in a pan over low heat. Bring to a boil, then boil for 1-2 minutes. Refrigerate. Keeps for about 2 weeks in the fridge).

8 ice cubes, cracked

4 key limes (or 2 regular limes), cut into small wedges. Save a few slices as a garnish, if desired.

4 teaspoons raw cane sugar, divided

4 ounces of pisco

3 additional ice cubes, cracked

In a blender, place the 8 cracked ice cubes, the mango and the sugar syrup. Blend until the mango is completely liquefied. Set aside. Place an equal amount of lime wedges into four small glasses. Add a teaspoon of raw cane sugar to each glass. With a muddler (see photo) or wooden spoon, crush the lime and sugar until it forms a paste.

A wooden muddler is used to crush the limes at the bottom of each glass.

Place the remaining three cracked cubes in a cocktail shaker. Add 2/3 cup of the mango puree and the pisco and shake until condensation forms on the shaker.

Shake it, chica!

Pour immediately into the cocktail glasses. Garnish with lime wedge if desired.

A Pisco Cocktail for your Memorial Day Weekend

24 May

¿Qué cosa? Señorita Vino is expounding upon something other than vino?

Variety, chicas y chicos, is the spice of life, so to add a little sabor to your Memorial Day fin de semana, it is my supreme pleasure to introduce my latest invention…the Caipirinka. It’s a refreshingly  exotic blend of mangoes, lime and pisco.

My latest brainchild: A pisco cocktail featuring mangos. Ooooh….aaaahhh!

Yep, it’s like the Brazilian Caipirinha but with a two-fold Peruvian twist: 1). Pisco is the national drink of Perú*, and 2). Mangos grow happily in Perú. And of course, there’s 2a: Señorita Vino’s parents hail from the land of the Incas.

If you’re not familiar with pisco, it’s a clear alcoholic spirit made from grapes. Some say it’s comparable to Italy’s grappa and Greece’s ouzo. And  like grappa and ouzo, pisco can knock you flat on your asti spumante, so be forewarned: un poquito goes a long way.

This Peruvian pisco is made from the quebranta grape.

Adding to the Caipirinka’s uniquely Peruvian flair is the mango. Perú is one of six countries that exports mangos to the U.S.  The mangos I used to make the Caipirinka were generously provided by the Mango Board, which probably had no idea I’d use them to make an alcoholic beverage.

But if anyone’s keeping track, this is arguably the world’s most nutrient-rich cocktail. Mangos contain more than 20 different types of nutrients and vitamins, and just one cup of mangos is 100 calories and provides 100% of your recommended vitamin C allowance. See? Señorita Vino cares muchísimo about the health (and girlish figures) of her readers.

Six varieties of mangos are available in the U.S.

I used fresh, pureed ataulfo mangos, the oblong, bright yellow fruit in the photo above. ¿Porqué ataulfo? Because this variety has no fibers and is as smooth as butter, making it a great option to blend in cocktails or fruit smoothies. Not only that, but the flesh is gloriously golden, calling to mind the gold treasure of the Inca empire. Now there’s a culture that literally worshipped its bling. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

So without further ado, here’s how you can add a little Inca gold to your Memorial Day weekend. Because we all have different palates (See “Vino 101”), you may want to adjust the amount of sugar, lime or pisco. If you do up the pisco content, Señorita Vino takes no responsabilidad if you wake up in a strange land, covered in gold sequins and tropical bird feathers. ¡Salud!

*There is some debate between Perú and Chile as to which country ‘invented’ pisco. It was Perú, of course (see 2a above).

Señorita Vino’s Caipirinka 

(Serves 4)

Ingredients:

1 cup of ripe Ataulfo mangos (about 2), cubed

6 tablespoons of  sugar syrup (make ahead: Dissolve 8 tablespoons of baker’s sugar into 8 tablespoons of water in a pan over low heat. Bring to a boil, then boil for 1-2 minutes. Refrigerate. Keeps for about 2 weeks in the fridge).

8 ice cubes, cracked

4 key limes (or 2 regular limes), cut into small wedges. Save a few slices as a garnish, if desired.

4 teaspoons raw cane sugar, divided

4 ounces of pisco

3 additional ice cubes, cracked

In a blender, place the 8 cracked ice cubes, the mango and the sugar syrup. Blend until the mango is completely liquefied. Set aside. Place an equal amount of lime wedges into four small glasses. Add a teaspoon of raw cane sugar to each glass. With a muddler (see photo) or wooden spoon, crush the lime and sugar until it forms a paste.

A wooden muddler is used to crush the limes at the bottom of each glass.

Place the remaining three cracked cubes in a cocktail shaker. Add 2/3 cup of the mango puree and the pisco and shake until condensation forms on the shaker.

Shake it, chica!

Pour immediately into the cocktail glasses. Garnish with lime wedge if desired.

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