16 Dec // Friday drinks: Cherry Christmas

Christmas is one time where I'll ease up on my usual cringing (complete with eye roll) at bad puns. Someone tweeted they'd seen a girl in London wearing a t-shirt "It's time to get blotto in Santa's grotto" which I appreciated, and I was similarly (ironically?) tempted by another which read "Single and ready to jingle" which you'll be pleased to know I resisted from actually paying money for. It is cherry season though, and even I couldn't resist calling this delicious cocktail Cherry Christmas. It's the silly season and it's the week before Christmas and you deserve a drink.  

Fresh cherries are so good, and let me tell you it is not Christmas day in our family without freshly baked croissants, black coffee, and a mountain of cherries on Christmas morning. Similarly, pomegranates are increasingly taking a starring role on the Christmas table - scattered on desserts, scattered over slow cooked lamb, sprinkled into cocktails: they're just so damn festive!

So keeping with the cherry and the pomegranate theme, I bought myself a bottle of Six Barrel Soda Co cherry and pomegranate soda syrup to go with some vodka and cointreau I had lying around (such is life when you're a food and beverage writer). I caught up with Joe of Six Barrel recently - they stock their syrups all over the place, but also have a soda shop at their HQ in my beloved Wellington. And even though I'm devastated their haloumi baby burgers are no longer on the menu (they simply stick to sodas and fries these days) they still make damn fine drinks.

With just over a week until Christmas, there is still plenty of time to entertain someone you like with a deliciously pink and festive cocktail that you effortlessly whipped up without even thinking about it. Have we talked about ice yet? Giant ice cubes and spheres have been my new favourite thing for a while now, and I've even taken to freezing water in a plastic container, and then just (very carefully) stabbing shards of it off (don't try this at home?!) for one tall and striking piece of ice in a drink. I've also been putting pomegranate seeds, flower petals, and herbs into my ice trays, and a little fleck of colour goes a long way.  

So whether you're the kind of person who's life speeds up or slows down in the lead up to Christmas, another good drink in your entertaining arsenal will surely help get you through. Cheers!        

Cocktail hour: Cherry Christmas

Ingredients 

Ice 

30ml vodka

15ml cointreau 

30ml Six Barrel Soda Co Cherry and Pomegranate syrup 

Soda water 

To garnish: petals, ice cubes, pomegranate seeds, freeze dried cherries

Method

Fill a glass with ice. Add the vodka, cointreau, and soda syrup. Top with soda water. Garnish and enjoy!