We're all guilty of it. Hosting a party, but only providing cola, soda, lime and a far too sweet pre-mixed cocktail. Somewhere between food prep, gifts, decorations and music, the art of mixology gets lost along the way. But having just one perfectly crafted cocktail, especially a personalized one, is a great icebreaker at parties and adds that element of "special" everyone craves. The key to making a good drink isn't just in the mixings, but the garnishes too.
Nothing will create a more unique drink than one with fermented garnishes (you still have time to make them before Christmas and New Year's Eve!). Below is a list of our favorites: what's yours?
Fermented Garnishes for Bloody Marys & Caesars (Hey, Canada!)
Have you tried making a Bloody Mary or Caesar at home and been disappointed by the less-than-restaurant quality? The issue isn't your mixings, it's your fixings.
To make a truly amazing Bloody Mary or Caesar, you need the right garnishes. Celery, pickles and limes are classic, but these fermented treats will blow your guests away. Fermented Crunchy Asparagus or Spicy Lacto-Fermented Green Beans are the perfect way to jazz up your drink. If you're really willing to commit some time and have fermented before, you can even make your own Sour Pickles (they're completely different than the kind you buy at the grocery store!). All of these can be made with the help of our Pickle Pebbles and Pickle Pipes to make sure the fermentation is a success.
If you're still unhappy with the taste of the drink, add an ounce of pickle juice, especially if you find it's too bland.
Fermented Lemons (They Aren't Sweet!)
Stop thinking about limoncello. Fermented lemons are not sweet or sour, especially if fermented for a long time. As lemons ferment, they slowly lose their bitter taste and take on a more subdued minty flavor, with savoury touch. To make fermented lemons, you just add a bit of salt and use a tamper, like our Pickle Packer, to release lemon juice for the brine. Top it off with a Pickle Pebble and Pickle Pipe to ferment.
Fermented lemons are perfect to muddle into a refreshing drink (you can use the Pickle Packer as a muddler, too!), like a vodka soda, rye and water, or vodka seven. Add some rosemary for a festive holiday finish. The best part? The entire lemon becomes edible after fermentation... talk about a fun party trick. Get the recipe here.
Fermented Pearl Onions (A.K.A. Cocktail Onions)
Oh my, you are fancy! Cocktail onions are a classic garnish, famously paired with Gibson martinis, that exude sophistication and charm. Commonly made with sweet, pearl onions, cocktail onions provide a subtle and sweet onion flavor to martinis (no blue curacao here!). Your guests will love the timelessness of these drinks, especial at more formal affairs, and feel right at home with Gatsby (you).
Learn how to make Fermented Pear Onions here. It's a simple fermentation that will be made even easier with Pickle Pipes and Pickle Pebbles. If you're not into martinis, these are great for Bloody Marys, Caesars, and on charcuterie boards.
Psst! If you're really bad at this cocktail-making-thing, ice is your saviour. Fill your glass with ice to the very brim, add the alcohol and then your mix (soda, etc.), for the best results. Don't forget to top it off with some garnishes, like our fermented suggestions above. Be sure to try out your signature drinks a few days before your party to get the flavors just right.
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