St-Germain is my absolute favorite liqueur, and I have no problem admitting that I am obsessed with it -- not in an I drink it all day every day kind of way but in an it's my drink of choice kind of way. Friends now know that if a bar or restaurant offers a drink with St-Germain in it, that's the drink I'm getting. If I can't figure out what to order somewhere, I will ask if a St-Germain Cocktail can be prepared for me. This is a mixture of St-Germain, sparkling wine, and soda water and is one of the best ways to enjoy St-Germain so you can really taste the liqueur.
If you haven't heard of St-Germain before, it is a French liqueur made from handpicked elderflower blossoms. (And a little research tells me the blossoms are put into sacks and then transported by bicycle.) The resulting liqueur is sweet, without being cloying, and floral, without being overpowering. It's often used in place of simple syrup in cocktails, adding sweetness and a little more.
I like this description of it best:
Neither passionfruit nor pear, grapefruit nor lemon, the sublime taste of St-Germain hints at each of these and then none of them exactly. It is a flavor as subtle and delicate as it is captivating.
A little like asking a hummingbird to describe the flavor of its favorite nectar.
-St-Germain marketing materials
So you can imagine that when Emily decided to host a St-Germain party, I had absolutely no hesitations about attending. All of the invitees were asked to bring a drink made with St-Germain and something for everyone to snack on. I went with the Sangria Flora and made some Parmesan crisps with a tomato topping and some almond, elderflower, and lime travel cakes.
|Photo courtesy of Bianca|
Sangria Flora (adapted from St-Germain recipes)
3 cups Sauvignon Blanc
3/4 cup St-Germain
1 nectarine, diced
10 to 15 strawberries, hulled and cut in eighths
1/4 cup blueberries
Mix Sauvignon Blanc and St-Germain in a pitcher or carafe, and top with as much fruit as will fit. Let stand for at least 15 minutes (up to 3 hours), and then serve. Add more fruit as necessary. (I also ended up replenishing the sangria with the remaining wine and a splash of St-Germain.)
I thought this sangria was very balanced. It wasn't overly "winey" or overly sweet like many sangrias are. And it's fun to eat the soaked fruit. You can basically use any fruit you like -- peaches, grapes, raspberries, and so on -- but I thought nectarines, blueberries, and strawberries looked especially pretty in the drink.
|Photo courtesy of Daisy|
We had lots of other fun drinks to sample too. Amy whipped up St. Honore 75 cocktails to order, Meghan made a pitcher of St-Germain and basil cocktails, Emily made fresh peach syrup to incorporate in a peach and St-Germain spritzer, Bianca served up Limoncello with St-Germain floaters, Daisy made a pitcher of Left Bank cocktails (gin, St-Germain, and Sauvignon Blanc), and Elizabeth provided a palate-cleansing virgin ginger-peach drink made with homemade spicy ginger syrup.
I'll share the recipes for the Parmesan crisps with tomatoes and the elderflower and lime travel cakes in upcoming posts.
Do you love St-Germain too?