For this week’s cocktail I didn’t have access to quite as large of a selection of ingredients as usual, which I took as a bit of a challenge. What’s the quote again– necessity is the mother of invention? ‘Necessity’ is perhaps too strong of a word, but I think the theory remains true.
I wanted to make something easy, but with a twist, and this cocktail definitely fits the bill. It’s a variation of the classic greyhound (an easy mix of vodka and grapefruit juice), which I’ve always found to be a great summer drink.
The peppercorn syrup is easy to make, and has a nice kick without being too overwhelming. I changed the original recipe, and used pink peppercorns rather than black– they are a bit more floral and not quite so overtly spicy. To make the syrup add 1/2c sugar, 1/2c water, and 1/8 c (or more) crushed pink peppercorns to a small saucepan, and heat on medium-low until the sugar is completely dissolved, then remove from heat and let cool. I would let this sit for quite a while, and possibly overnight. I tried it after simmering, then and letting it sit for about 20 minutes, and the flavor hadn’t really transferred. After letting everything meld overnight the pepper flavor was much more present.
• 1.5 oz Absolute Peppar Vodka (or other pepper vodka). You could also use regular vodka if you prefer, or you could even infuse your own.
• 1/2 oz pink peppercorn simple syrup
• 3oz pink grapefruit juice
It may seem like the pepper flavor will overwhelm the grapefruit, but it actually balances really well. Without the little kick from the pink peppercorns and the pepper vodka the drink can easily be too sweet.
- Add ingredients to the base of a shaker with ice
- Shake vigorously for about 30 seconds
- Strain into a cocktail glass and serve
I garnished mine with a pinch of crushed pink peppercorns, but you are welcome to leave them out if you prefer.
While there is a little bit of planning and prep required to make this drink, it’s mostly inactive time, which makes it totally manageable.
Enjoy your weekend!