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Douglas Fir Sparkletini

Living in the Northwest, Douglas fir is abundant. The light essence of Douglas-fir-infused gin instantly conjures holiday memories, and a splash of Champagne adds festive bubbles. This is absolutely my favorite holiday cocktail. If fresh Douglas fir is not available, you can substitute a Douglas fir tea bag, available online. I also like to make a variation with half vodka, half gin and squeeze in a wedge of tangerine. For a drier version, eliminate or decrease the white cranberry juice.

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ oz. Douglas fir-infused gin
  • ¾ oz. White cranberry juice
  • ¾ oz. Fresh lemon juice
  • ¾ oz. Simple syru*
  • Splash of Brut Champagne or sparkling wine chilled

Instructions

  • Fill a cocktail shaker with ice.
  • Measure in the infused gin, cranberry juice, lemon and simple syrup.
  • Cap and shake vigorously.
  • Strain into a Martini glass and top with a splash of Champagne.
  • Garnish with a tiny Douglas fir sprig and float a frozen cranberry in the drink.

Notes

For the Douglas fir–infused gin (Enough for about 16 drinks)
  • 1 (5- to 6-inch) sprig of fresh-picked Douglas fir branch, rinsed
  • 1 bottle (750-ml.) gin
Put the fir branch into the gin bottle, cap and let sit 24 hours. (Do not let it infuse for more than 24 hours.) Remove the branch and discard. The infused gin can be stored at room temperature for up to one year.
Kathy Casey is president of the Seattle-based consultancy Kathy Casey Food Studios Liquid Kitchen.