We have a confession to make: We fell in love – with simple syrups. Let us explain.
It all started when we visited Prince Edward County, or “The County” as it’s known, a burgeoning hotbed of vineyards and boutique restaurants in Eastern Ontario. During our trip, we spent some time at The Hubb Eatery & Lounge at Angeline’s Inn - a go-to for locals and a bucket-list restaurant for foodies.
But, it was at the Terroir Festival, a food and beverage lover’s dream event with samples of the best Prince Edward County has to offer, that we sat in a mixology seminar and discovered that something as seemingly simple as simple syrup can rock your summer drink menu. The sommelier showed us how to step up a drinks menu by using ingredients already on hand: sugar, water and a flavor of choice. What really made us fall in love with this concept? The simplicity of simple syrup infusions.
Here’s how to make a simple syrup, and two recipes inspired by our cocktail tutorial.
Simple Syrup How-To
Start by adding equal parts water and sugar to a saucepan and heat until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat.
Add fresh herbs, fruit, or spices.
Cover and let cool.
Once cool, remove the extra ingredients.
Note that the more of an ingredient, and the longer you keep it in the simple syrup to infuse it, the more flavorful – or potent – the mixture will be.
Stored in an airtight container, the simple syrup infusion will last up to a month.
Remember to get creative and experiment with the flavors you are drawn to.
Cocktail 1: Charred Lime Gin & Tonic
Gin and tonic is a classic favorite – a splash of charred lime infused simple syrup takes it into new territory.
To Make: Place cut limes on a baking sheet and sprinkle with sugar. Broil until charred, then add to simple syrup as per instructions above. Add a splash to a gin and tonic for a refreshing cocktail.
Cocktail 2: Lavender Champagne Cocktail
A party isn’t a party without champagne. For the summer, bring the party to your patio with a lavender champagne cocktail.
To Make: Add a handful of fresh lavender springs to simple syrup as per instructions above. Add half an ounce of lavender simple syrup to a flute glass, top with champagne and garnish with a lemon twist.
Use ingredients you have on hand or take inspiration from the flavors of your locale to create your own unique simple syrups and take your cocktails to the next level.
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