Most of you know that I don’t drink alcohol. It’s not a choice that comes from a place of judgment – in fact, I rather enjoy the company of drunk people, especially when they’re not throwing up. Rather, it’s a choice borne of my deeply held need for control, my rather extreme emetophobia, and my being kind of frugal. Not so frugal that I won’t spring for some fancy vanilla beans, mind you, but just frugal enough that I won’t drink something that tastes like gasoline. Mostly, I don’t drink because I just don’t feel like I’m missing out on much by not drinking. There’s one exception, though, and that’s when someone orders a fancy drink with a cool name and a funky garnish. Take, for example, the Smokin’ Cosmo from Salut in Edina, Minnesota.
When it comes to these attention-grabbers, I’m envious.
And so, I’ve come to embrace the “mocktail,” which is a fancy-ish drink without alcohol. When I was growing up, they were known as “kiddie cocktails” – my dad will usually order us grenadine and sprite, and have the bartender throw in a few maraschino cherries. Side note: I’m from Wisconsin. Ordering drinks from a bar for young children is just something we do. Sometimes a mocktail is a fancy ginger lemonade, or something seasonal and fun. I love a good mocktail.
I’ve started to experiment with mocktails at home, because I bought too many limes a few weeks ago. I’ve squeezed a little bit of lime into ginger ale, and it is just perfect. Just fizzy and sweet enough to feel fancy, but not so fancy that you’ll have a hard time getting out of bed the next morning.
My next mocktail might have to use some meyer lemons.
A (very generous) friend brought over a half-dozen of these beauties the other night, and I made them into a pound cake. I’m still adjusting to the fact that we live in a place where citrus fruit just grows in our friends’ back yards, and that we walk outside without a coat and boots in February. Last February, we were inching out of a polar vortex and I had to give myself a few second degree burns to warm myself up. I don’t recommend that avenue, by the way.
So, what’s your favorite mocktail/cocktail? What’s everyone doing with all of their beautiful citrus fruit?