Last week I shared a few of my favorite homemade summer beverages. Honestly, as a (mostly) non-drinker and someone who isn’t particularly keen on sweet drinks, I don’t seek out mocktails etc. very often, but I do occasionally like to play with combining more ingredients and flavors in my fizzy waters.
They don’t look like much. Sure, I could dress it up with a grapefruit wedge and herb sprigs, or even a little sugar on the rim, but why?
Recently I had a ‘ginger ale’ at Cafe Gratitude in Santa Cruz, which is basically a glassful of fresh-pressed ginger juice with agave, a splash of club soda, and lemon. It’s strong. It’s gingery. And I don’t have a juice press, but I do have a high-speed blender, so I threw a knob of fresh ginger in there with the juice of one grapefruit and enough water to fill my sodamaker’s bottle. Blended until very smooth–and a peculiar shade of yellow from the ginger and juice–then strained through find mesh to get rid of the bitter ginger pulp.
On its own, this combination was potent as hell. I sipped a little bit and it warmed my entire chest. Whewwww. (I guess it has that in common with booze.) But combined with my current-favorite herbal sparkling water combo (rosemary, peppermint, and lemon verbena) with a ratio of about 4:1 in favor of the water? Very nice. And a little fancy. Could be fancier. Could even be mixed with your favorite liquor, I suppose, but I’ll leave that up to you fans of mixology.