The best part about living in Northern California this time of year is that while everyone else is mourning the loss of Summer, the Bay Area comes to life with impossibly blue skies, a cornucopia of tomatoes, figs, melon, and late-Summer stone fruit, and — finally! — some warm, sunny afternoons. And then, to top it all off, cocktail week enters the picture, too.
San Francisco Cocktail Week started five years ago as a way to honor the heritage of America's colorful cocktail culture, both in the Bay Area and elsewhere. The weeklong festivities are filled with parties, cocktail-making classes, and historical seminars.
Can't make it to San Francisco? I'll be here to report back what I learn on everything, whether it's how to sip tequila or the science behind tasting cocktails. To poise myself for next week's rigorous bar exams, I hunkered down with the Cointreau Cup, one of the official cocktails of next week's event. With its floral aromas and slight effervescence, it was perfect for this time of year. To see the recipe, keep reading.
2 ounces Cointreau
3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice
1 ounce club soda
2 large strawberries, plus another for garnish
2 slices cucumber, plus another for garnish
2 healthy sprigs of fresh mint
- Muddle strawberries and cucumber in a shaker tin. Add mint, lemon juice, Cointreau, and ice. Shake and strain over fresh ice and top with club soda.
Makes 1 drink.