New Mocktail Recipe: Sparkling Lavender Mint Limeade
This Sparkling Lavender Mint Limeade is the summer sipper that has none of the booze but all of the fun for your next cookout.
Yeah, yeah, we know: If we don't want a cocktail, we can always drink a soda (or a pop when we're in the Midwest). But a mocktail is just so much more... fun! Not every celebration calls for a cocktail and not every event requires a little something to take the edge off. Some of us like to keep our edge, but that doesn't mean we don't like to drink something a little more special than a regular soda to go with our charcuterie boards, grazing tables, and even our six-course dinners. In those cases, a cola just won't cut it.
Self-care doesn't have to just be on Sundays and with so many clever cocktails sans booze, we can now observe our self-care regimen and enjoy dinner and drinks, too. And, of course, as summer comes to a close, we know you have more barbecues and backyard parties to pack in before they're replaced by tailgating parties and chili cookoffs, so we put together a tasty mocktail to keep the summer party going: Sparkling Lavender-Mint Limeade.
The number one reason we chose lavender, mint, and lime is that they taste great together. When you're eating or drinking lavender, it can sometimes taste very floral or perfumy, but here, the acid in the lime juice tames it. Additionally, lavender has a strong flavor so it needs an equally strong conterpart: That's where the mint comes in. Those mighty flavors are what you need in a mocktail, to make up for the absence of alcohol.
Taste the Seasons
On top of going well together, summer is prime harvest time for mint, lavender, and lime. If you really want a tall drink of summer, this is the alcohol-free sparkling beverage you've been looking for.
Mocktail recipe and photos by Jay & Leah of Gastronom Cocktails
The infused syrup is the base of this soft cocktail. If you've never made simple syrup before, it's so easy that you might start making it just to have on hand. It's equal parts sugar and water simmered in a saucepan until the sugar is dissolved — about three minutes. To infuse the syrup with the herbs, you add the lavender buds and mint leaves to the syrup just after removing it from the heat. The flavors infuse into the mixture while the syrup cools. While it seems logical to muddle the fresh mint before adding it to the syrup, try to resist the urge. The heat of the syrup will gently extract the mint essence without making the drink taste like a breath mint.
Once your lavender mint simple syrup has cooled, you can prepare a pitcher of the mixer. All you do is mix together the lime juice, water, and syrup. If you have extra slices of lime and sprigs of mint, you can add those to the mixture and let it all mingle together in the refrigerator for two hours. When you're ready to serve your mocktail, add ice cubes to the pitcher and stir in sparkling water.
Fizz: If you don't have sparkling water, use seltzer or club soda for your concoction. The one thing you should steer clear of is tonic water, which will throw off the flavor balance.
Citrus: If you want to work with what you have, and what you have are lemons rather than limes, you can use those. While lemon and lime are not always interchangeable, lemon juice can be used in this mocktail recipe because it also pairs well with both lavender and mint. If you happen to have both on hand, you can use them together for a lemon-lime drink.
Syrup: The lavender-mint simple syrup is key to make this refreshing drink, but if you want to try a shortcut, you can use a sweetened, mildly flavored soda like a lemon or lime soda instead of the syrup and sparkling water. Just make sure to let a few mint and lavender leaves steep in the lime juice before serving.
Sample this summer sipper and let us know how it tasted!