Festive (and Flaming!) Fourth of July Cocktails
As we head in to the Fourth of July weekend, I thought today’s issue of ‘Wine Wednesday’ could instead offer a couple of festive cocktail recipes that capture the excitement and beauty of the quintessential fireworks and sparklers that so many of us enjoy during this holiday. But be warned…these recipes call for oil and matches, and therefore need to be handled with the utmost care and concentration.
It’s fun to watch someone make these drinks (providing you’re lucky enough to talk someone in to it), and the drinks get a nice, rich flavor from the caramelized citrus. So, here’s how create your flaming cocktail:
- You should have fresh, ripe fruit with thick skin, ideally lemons or oranges. Use a knife or a peeler to get a piece of the peel that is about 1 inch wide by 2 inches long with just a touch of white pith on the underside. The fruit should be firm and fresh to ensure there is enough oil present in the skin.
- To flame the oil, hold a lit match in one hand, and pick up the twist in the other very carefully…like holding an egg shell.
- Hold the twist by the side (not the ends) between your thumb and forefinger, skin side down, and about four inches above the drink. Don’t squeeze the peel, or you’ll lose all the oil before you flame.
- Hold the match between the drink and the twist, closer to the twist. Warm the peel by gently passing it close to the flame 2-3 times.
- Snap the twist sharply, propelling the oil through the lit match and onto the surface of the drink.
Here are some classic American drinks you can create as flaming cocktails, and they also happen to be in the order of red, white and blue!
2 oz. Belvedere Vodka
½ oz. Cointreau
2 oz. Cranberry Juice
Flamed Orange Peel
Pour Vodka, Cointreau and Cranberry juice into a shaker. Shake 15 times and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a flamed orange peel.
2 oz. Beefeater
1 oz. Luxardo Maraschino Cherry Liqueur (this is a clear liqueur)
3/4 oz. fresh squeezed lemon juice
Flamed lemon peel for garnish
Pour Gin, Cherry Liqueur and fresh lemon juice into a shaker, add ice and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with flamed lemon peel.
1.5 oz. Absolut Vodka
½ oz. Cointreau
1/4 oz. fresh lemon juice
Dash Blue Curacao
Flamed Orange Peel for garnish
Pour Vodka, Cointreau, lemon juice and Curacao into shaker. Shake 15 times and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with flamed orange peel.
Again, please exercise caution when making these cocktails. Your eyebrows are too precious for you to be careless! But if you’re entertaining over the holiday weekend, you’re sure to impress your guests with these flaming creations. Have a safe, happy Fourth of July!