It's December 23rd which means my favorite holiday ritual has arrived: gift wrapping set to a Nancy Meyers movie marathon. Even if you don't know this woman, you probably already love her. Among her oeuvre, she's responsible for Father of the Bride, The Parent Trap, and It's Complicated. (I know right? Solid gold). Her movies are sumptuous and make superb companions for wrapping presents and sipping a little something. Every year about this time, with Nancy's help, I pay a visit to the fantasy that I own a rambling farmhouse with fireplaces in every room. It's somewhere charming but glamorous, like the Hamptons or Napa. I'll be at the tail end of my wildly successful career as something chic like a playwright or interior designer, and aging gracefully, basking in the glow of good fortune. It's holiday movie magic, my friends. A cocktail (or two) does wonders for rounding out the daydream.
Cocktail Credits: This rendition of Imbibe Magazine's Cranberry Smash was concocted by dear friend, Jackie, and composed by my #1 bro, Eli.
Cranberry Gin Smash
Makes 1 cocktail
- 6 fresh cranberries (sorry, craisins are not invited to this party)
- 1 oz. rosemary simple syrup (recipe below)
- 1 oz. lemon juice
- 2 oz. your favorite gin (right now I'm digging Barr Hill Gin from Caledonia Spirits in Vermont)
- Cranberry + rosemary sprig garnish
- Muddle cranberries with rosemary simple syrup in a 16 oz pint glass
- Add ice to fill half the glass
- Add lemon juice + gin
- Cover with cocktail shaker and shake well for 10-15 seconds
- With a fine mesh strainer, strain liquid into serving glass
- To serve, add a couple fresh ice cubes (equally delicious straight up if you fancy)
- Garnish with a rosemary sprig speared with a cranberry
Rosemary Simple Syrup
- 1 cup* water
- 1 cup* sugar
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
- Combine all ingredients in small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Boil until all sugar has dissolved, about 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool, allowing rosemary to 'steep' in the syrup, 30-45 minutes. Remove rosemary sprigs and transfer to airtight container. Chill before using.
*You can make more or less, as long as the ratio remains 1:1