As promised, we’re sharing the full recipes from the first installment of our summer cocktail party series! The District of Columbia is a transient town, and even folks like us who have been here for a decade (!) move around inside the city quite a bit. We drew on our own springtime move to a new house as inspiration for this housewarming party featuring some light and airy St-Germain cocktails, perfect for this time of year, each owing a little bit to this beautiful city we call home. We hope you enjoy!
Combine all the ingredients, stir well with ice, then strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
The Scidmore – named in honor of Eliza Ruhamah Scidmore, the very impressive lady who first brought our iconic cherry blossom trees from Japan to DC in 1912 – combines Japan’s dry rice wine with the sweet floral notes of St-Germain and some pretty unique Japanese cherry blossom syrup, and just a bit of rosewater (not too much or it will completely overwhelm the drink!). All those sweet, flowery ingredients could make this a cloying drink, but the complex dryness of the Sake helps make this a crisp, clear, bright drink – and plenty light, since Sake doesn’t have a very high proof. If making ahead in a big batch for a party, measure out your ingredients in the proper proportions, combine everything ahead of time, then stir with lots of ice and strain into a chilled pitcher just before serving.
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The District Sour
2 oz Dry Gin
1 oz Fresh Lemon Juice
1/2 oz St-Germain
1/2 oz Cherry Liqueur
1/2 oz Rich Simple Syrup
Combine all the ingredients and shake well with ice. Strain into a cocktail glass – or a highball glass filled with ice – then top with sparkling water and garnish with a maraschino cherry.
The District Sour is tart and sweet, complexly floral and botanical from that fantastic combination of Gin and St-Germain, with a refreshingly sparkling finish, perfect for spring and summer. Just make sure to use cherry liqueur, which should be sweet and fruity, and not Cherry Heering, which will be a bit too dry and spicy. If making for a party, increase your proportions and combine everything ahead of time. Just before you’re ready to serve (any later and you’ll lose your fizz), shake everything with lots of ice, strain into a chilled pitcher, and top with of sparkling water.
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2 oz Rosemary-Infused Dry Gin or Genever
1 oz Lemon Juice
1/2 oz Rich Simple Syrup
Tonic or Seltzer Water
A few days before serving, submerge a few rosemary sprigs in a glass jar filled with Gin or Genever (we used the maltier, smoother Genever) and let sit for a few days. Strain out the rosemary, then combine the Genever, juice, syrup and strawberries in a cocktail shaker. Muddle the strawberries well, then shake everything with ice. Strain into a highball glass (you may want to double-strain with a sieve or cheesecloth to get out all that pulp), top with seltzer water – or better yet, tonic water to add a touch of bitterness to complement the rosemary – just before serving and drink without hesitation. Garnish with a sprig of rosemary.
Another light, crisp sour perfect for spring and summer, this Fizz will convince you that an herb like rosemary has plenty of business in a cocktail. It’s complexly botanical, light and sweet, richly fruity from the fresh strawberries, balanced by the refreshing bitterness of the tonic. If making for a party, scale up all you your ingredients and combine ahead of time. Then muddle, shake, strain into a chilled pitcher, and top with the tonic or seltzer water just before serving.
All illustrations by Dinara Mirtalipova for Oh So Beautiful Paper
Dip-Dye Menu Cards: Fig. 2 Design Studio
Calligraphy: Meant to Be Calligraphy
Photo Credits: Nole Garey for Oh So Beautiful Paper
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