Let’s Get Blitzen: Cocktail Advent Calendar – Day 23 – Reindeer Games. Have you been hoarding the Christmas cookies? Take a break from sugar with this cocktail that has no added sweetener.
Simply freshly squeezed blood orange juice, mezcal, tonic, a pinch of flaky salt and a bunch of tarragon.
I was recently having a conversation with someone who wisely pointed out that cocktails with salt take things to a new level. Why does a salted rim work so well on a margarita? Because the salt balances the intense acidity of the lime juice.
If you feel like your cocktail is missing something, other than bitters, consider adding a little pinch of salt and see what happens. Much like in cooking, you want to achieve balance – bitter, sweet, acidic, salty, sour, etc.
Of course there are different styles of drinks that favour either sour, bitter, sweet, or spirited. What “balance” looks like will be different for each style of cocktail.
Similarly, if you feel your holiday decor is missing something, add a nutcracker. This little guy is probably my favourite from my collection. Yes, I have more nutcrackers than a single sane person should possess but I won’t be stopped.
If memory serves, my parents brought me this guy back from a trip to Europe. He has a DOG, like come on. Adorable.
He is the perfect companion for this Reindeer Games cocktail – that is just so damn pretty, thanks to that blood orange.
- 2 oz mezcal
- 2 oz blood orange juice
- 2 oz club soda
- Garnish: blood orange coin
- Garnish: bouquet of fresh tarragon
- Garnish: flaky sea salt
Add mezcal and blood orange juice to a highball glass. Stir.
Fill the glass with ice and top with club soda.
Garnish with blood orange coin, bouquet of fresh tarragon, and sprinkle with flaky sea salt.