Guest Blogger: Heidi Nedreberg
Photos: Caroline Hargraves & Jonda McCutchan
Ladies and gentlemen, I am an absolute sucker for fizzy Champagne or Prosecco-based cocktails. In fact, I have a go-to version that is one of my favorite rituals: every year on June 1 I celebrate the arrival of summer with a St. Germaine Fizzy: 1 Cup St. Germaine, a bottle of Prosecco, and lots of muddled berries (makes more than one serving…but who’s counting?). Maggie’s cocktail, paired with the warm weather as we sipped it in the sun on her front porch, made me feel like that summer cocktail, and the season itself, was within reach!
Spring-like Saturday afternoons at the end of winter are made for celebrating. Luckily, Maggie had a little bubbly up her sleeve!
March Hostess: Maggie (Chelsea insert.. :D)
Maggie is one of those people that you just instantly love. She is genuine and good-natured, funny and friendly. In some ways, this cocktail matches her perfectly! I was super bummed that I (Chelsea) missed out on Cocktail Club this month because I am sure Maggie did an amazing job as hostess – and who can complain about an afternoon eating brunchy noshings and drinking champagne? Thank you, Maggie, for being an amazing hostess and pulling this event together without a hitch!
March Cocktail: Strawberry Fizz
- 2 strawberries
- 1 tbsp icing sugar (more or less, depending on the sweetness of the berries)
- 1 leaf of basil
- Champagne (let’s be honest, the more the better)
There were two things that made this simple yet amazing cocktail so special:
fresh basil and powdered sugar!
Ok, I’m a sucker for basil (as you may know from its addition to my Bees Knees cocktail in September), and it is amazing paired with strawberry. This classic flavor combo was delightful with the addition of a little bubbly, and Maggie mentioned two other tantalizing flavor combinations I can’t wait to try: blackberry-thyme and raspberry-mint.
When Maggie poured the tablespoon of powdered sugar on the berries and basil, many of us looked on incredulously, thinking it would be far too sweet or make the drink milky. Neither of those things happened. Instead, it dissolved perfectly (unlike granulated sugar), made a lovely, syrupy muddle, and perfectly balanced the dryness of the Champagne. In fact, this will be a lovely improvement for my St. Germaine Fizzy in just about 12 weeks…
Actually, now that I think of it, there is a third element that made this cocktail special. Maggie proclaimed that if she had it her way we’d be drinking beer, and seemed almost embarrassed that her cocktail was too simple. Given the incredible array of top-notch recipes we’ve had in the course of Cocktail Club, I can understand where she’s coming from: it can be more than a little intimidating to host these talented ladies and come up with the star of the show.
But Maggie’s Strawberry Fizz was absolutely perfect because it hit on something profoundly important: the best ingredients don’t need anything complex in order to shine. Simplicity was perfection, in this case, and that’s a good reminder. Cheers!
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Our next Cocktail Club will be on Friday, April 10! Stay tuned.
Categories: Cocktail Club