This weekend we want to celebrate the summer by shaking up the classic Bellini with some alternative fruit bases and an herbal dash.
Friday Happy Hour: Peach & Rosemary
The taste of summer is not complete without the sweet nectar from some peaches. The Sparkling Rosemary Peach cocktail is a refreshing twist on the classic Italian Bellini.
Serves about 8
- ¾ cup water
- 1/3 cup sugar*
- 1 rosemary sprig
- 2 ripe peaches, peeled, pitted and cubed
- 1 bottle of brut Champagne, chilled
Combine water, sugar and rosemary in a small saucepan and bring to a boil *(for a sweeter syrup, substitute ½ cup of sugar). Once sugar has dissolved, remove from heat and let cool. Strain into a bowl, removing solids; cover and chill in fridge for at least an hour.
In a food processor, add peaches and rosemary syrup; process until smooth. Strain mixture into a bowl and chill for at least a four hours. Once chilled, add 1 oz. of peach syrup into Champagne flute, top with about 3 oz. of chilled Champagne and serve.
Sweetened Saturday: Watermelon & Mint
Sweet and refreshing, watermelon is the go-to summertime melon. When paired with a hint of mint and a crisp Prosecco, the Watermelon-Mint Bellini is the perfect sip to beat the summer heat.
- 3 cups of watermelon, seeded and cubed (i-inch)
- 2 tbsp. sugar
- 2 tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1 sprig mint
- 3 cups chilled Prosecco
Place watermelon, sugar, lemon juice, mint and one cup of wine in a blender; process until smooth. Pour about 1/3 cup of mixture into eight champagne flutes each. Top with 2 oz. Prosecco and serve.
Sunday Funday: Strawberry & Basil
Strawberries and basil were meant to be. The subtle sweetness of the basil enhances the tart undertones of the strawberry for a savory flavor profile. The Strawberry-Basil Bellini is great as a cocktail, even better as a popsicle. Read on and cheers!
- ¾ cup water
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 hearty basil sprig
- 2 cups roughly chopped strawberries
- 1 bottle of Prosecco
- *4 oz. vodka (for popsicles)
Combine water, sugar and basil in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Once sugar has dissolved, remove from heat and let cool. Strain into a bowl, removing solids; cover and chill in fridge for at least an hour.
In a food processor, add strawberry and basil syrup; process until smooth. Strain mixture into a bowl to remove the strawberry seeds, and chill overnight. Once chilled, add 1 oz. of strawberry syrup into Champagne flute, top with about 3 oz. of chilled Champagne, garnish with basil and serve.
For an alternative to the sipping variety, turn these Strawberry-Basil Bellini’s into popsicles. Once the strawberry syrup has been strained, mix wine, vodka and syrup with a wooden spoon. The vodka will change the overall flavor profile of the Bellini and make them a bit stronger, so proceed with caution. Pour into popsicle molds and allow to freeze over night. The alcohol will freeze, though one must be patient. Serve immediately after pulling from freezer.
If you would like to nominate a cocktail recipe to appear in our latest series "Weekend Cocktails," email the online editor here.
Tools of the Trade
Become a master mixologist, or at least look like one, with the tools that make the trade.
- Muddler: This little tenderizing stick is a godsend and a must for any home bar. If fruity cocktails are in your future, the muddler is the only way to unlock fruits’ flavor.
- Handheld Citrus Juicer: Nothing beats freshly squeezed juice, but it can be a pain. Invest in a handheld citrus juicer; they are cheap and do the trick tout de suite.
- Cocktail Shaker: Don’t be a chump stirring your martini like a noob; purchase a nice shaker and become a master home barkeep.
- Jigger: This little apparati will make mixing the perfect drink as easy as pie. It's equipped with 1½ oz. and 1 oz. cups for perfectly measured pours every time.
*Pictured available at Williams-Sonoma