From cranberries to jalapenos to guavas, I've sipped a lot of experimental margaritas. While it's fun to build upon the classic combination of tequila, lime juice, and orange liquor, sometimes nothing beats the real thing. A traditional margarita on the rocks with a salted rim is one of life's little pleasures! Since it's Friday and Cinco de Mayo is next week, I highly recommend you kick start the weekend like I did, with an icy cold marg. Get the easy recipe after the break.
Although we are almost at the end of December, I highly recommend you wannabe mixologists make a cocktail entitled November. Created by Scott Baird, a dear friend, owner of 15 Romolo, and one of San Francisco's foremost bartenders, this concoction won the Nirvino Navan cocktail competition at Swig.
If you've never tried Navan, a natural vanilla liqueur, get your hands on a bottle stat! It's a great mixing liquor that can be used in both sweet and savory applications. This well-balanced, delicious cocktail balances out the Navan with a smoky scotch, while apple juice adds freshness.
To look at the recipe and check out a fabulous exclusive video of the bearded Baird making the cocktail, read more
While it might be too late for you to make Kahlua and gift it next week on Christmas — it takes three weeks for the coffee beans to infuse the vodka and rum mixture — I highly recommend you make this and give it to someone as a hostess gift in early January.
People are always surprised that liquors can be homemade, so it makes for an unexpected gift. What most don't realize is that the best bartenders are busy mixing up everything from homemade Baileys to fresh grenadine. The techniques they use to make these superior mixers are easily adaptable for the home.
A few weeks ago when I decided to make this, I spoke with friend and master mixologist Scott Baird of 15 Romolo in San Francisco. Although most recipes call for simply a clear spirit like vodka or light rum, Baird insists on a mixture of vodka and dark rum for a rich flavor and thick syrup-like liquid. To look at his recipe, read more