If you’re looking for a reason to raise a glass this month, you’ll find several as March leaps into spring. Known as the month of new beginnings, March offers a fresh start with the first day of a new season, bringing with it the promise of earlier dawns, brighter days, and later sunsets. We also honor Irish culture and history on St. Patrick’s Day, as well as raise awareness for the environment on World Wildlife Day (March 3), International Day of Forests (March 21), and World Water Day (March 22). In addition, March is National Nutrition Month in the U.S.
With so many vibrant dates lending inspiration, a refreshing green cocktail feels very apropos. The Secret Garden is a crisp blend of cucumber, grapes, mint, and lime that gives us reason to sip to spring. The frozen grapes especially are a treat beyond compare, as they won’t water down or cool down your drink too quickly like ice does. Plus, you have a deliciously nutritious snack waiting for you at the bottom of the glass.
Ingredients (serves 6-8)
1 cup cucumber, peeled and chopped, plus more sliced thinly for serving
3 cups jasmine tea
1 tbsp. fresh lemon balm, chopped
1tbsp. fresh mint, chopped, plus more for garnish
2 cups gin, shochu, or white wine
1 cup grapes, frozen
To freeze the grapes, wash and dry them before placing on a lined baking tray. Freeze for about an hour. In a juicer, process the limes and cup of cucumber, then strain into a pitcher. Steep the jasmine tea along with the lemon balm and mint for 20 minutes. Strain and cool. Add to the pitcher along with preferred spirit, thin slices of cucumber, and frozen grapes. Garnish with mint sprigs.