This is the perfectly festive citrusy cocktail you need for Thanksgiving (or anytime during the holiday season). Clementines are such a holiday treat for me. I can't help but buy a bag of them every time I'm out shopping this time of year. I've talked about oranges in my stocking before in my Cara Cara Orange Scone post and many of you agreed that citrus fruits were and still are a big part of your holidays as well. So I knew I wanted to incorporate my beloved clementines into a few recipes, starting with this refreshing Clementine and Sage Gin Smash cocktail.
There is just something so festive and old-fashioned about a cocktail.
Making them and drinking them makes me feel like I've gone back in time and I imagine my grandparents in their young adult years. They used to go dancing - like real, ballroom dancing - at country clubs with their friends and I wish I could have been a fly-on-the-wall and watched them whirl and twirl. My grandfather was an incredible dancer and I'll never forget him teaching me to waltz on the slate floor of my grandparents' foyer when I was just so little. Such a beautiful memory.
I love that cocktails have seen a resurgence and revival over the past few years and I feel they are especially appropriate during the busy but wonderful holiday season. Santa's little helper if you know what I mean. I like a cocktail that is tart and herbaceous, sometimes fruity but never too sweet. This one fits the bill. The lime juice is key to add that little tart edge that is so crucial in a good cocktail - if you're like me, add extra lime juice. This is kind of a dressed up gin and tonic, but if you really, really dislike gin feel free to use vodka or any clear spirit that you enjoy.
Herbs in Cocktails, you say?
Yes, yes, yes, I do. It's no secret that I love to add herbs to my cocktails. This Grapefruit + Basil Gin and Tonic has been a big hit and I have a few more herby cocktails coming. Rosemary is one of my favorites this time of year especially when paired with cranberry (stay tuned!).
Plus, sage just screams Thanksgiving to me and I have two huge sage plants still going strong in my garden so I knew I wanted to use it in some creative ways this season. These won't taste strongly of sage, but it's more of the aroma I'm after. I don't fuss around with a simple syrup or infusion because who has time for that? And also, this cocktail has plenty of sweetness from the clementines and tonic. I did not want to add more sweet.
Ingredients you need for this Clementine Sage Gin Smash
- fresh sage
- gin - the good stuff please. I love Bar Hill, Hendricks, and Citadelle
- cointreau, grand marnier, or other orange liqueur
- tonic water - again, the good stuff. It matters. I use Fever Tree or Q brand
Such a simple drink but so festive. I hope you'll give this one a try - stay tuned for a few more holiday-themed cocktails and recipes coming very soon!
You might also love:
- Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake Bars
- Thanksgiving Side Dishes
- Skillet Pumpkin Crisp with Gingersnap Crust
- Thai Red Curry Sweet Potato Soup
- Brothy Beans with Fennel and Parmesan