Meet my new favorite summer drink, a Saint Germain cocktail. A blend of St. Germain, (pronounced san-jer-man), white wine and club soda, think wine spritzer, but better. Light, effervescent and refreshing, this is a cocktail I have been sipping on all summer long. And the best part about this time of year, you can bend the rules a bit during the week, see a friend and splurge on a cocktail (or two) and soak up all those revitalizing summer vibes around you.
St-Germain is far and away the most popular elderflower liqueur, chances are you’ve had it, but perhaps didn’t even know it. This is a very versatile spirit that mixes with everything from Champagne and white wine as well as gin, vodka, and whiskey. Elderflower cocktails are absolutely delightful to drink, perfect for any occasion, and a fantastic change from the ordinary.
Originally created in 2007, St. Germain was named after the St. Germain-Des-Prés area of Paris. It’s naturally flavored, and here’s a little fun-fact for you, each bottle can contain up to 1,000 flowers. St. Germain tastes pleasantly floral, lightly herbal, sweet without being sugary, and is surprisingly versatile and makes for dynamic, complex cocktails.
Since elderflower liqueur is rather sweet, you can easily use it to replace other sweeteners in your cocktail recipes like simple syrup, agave and maple syrup. Here I use a crisp, light bodied wine to compliment the sweet notes of the St. Germain liqueur to create a well-balanced, but not too sweet, summer cocktail for sipping.
To clarify, elderflower liqueur is NOT the same as elderflower syrup or elderflower cordial. Both the syrup and cordial do not contain any alcohol.
Elderflower Liqueur Brands:
Picking the “best” brand of elderflower liqueur is difficult mainly because people’s taste buds vary greatly. Price-point can also be a factor. St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur is probably the best known brand and it happens to be my favorite. It is also one you can easily locate these days both in stores and online. Other notable brands are Chase Elderflower Liqueur and Bramleys & Gage Elderflower.
Elderflower drinks are nothing new. Elderflower cordials and syrups have long made an appearance in drinks, both alcoholic and not. This is particularly true in the United Kingdom where the tiny white flowers flourish and homemade cordials are a summer tradition.
This Saint Germaine cocktail is incredibly simple and a great go-to for any warm summer evening, so no need to wait for the weekend to whip one up. And if you are feeling like bubbles, swap out the white wine for Champagne (just don’t shake it up when making it), both work perfectly in this delightful summer cocktail.
Saint Germain Cocktail
- 1 1/2 ounce St. Germain elderflower liqueur
- 2 ounces dry white wine
- 2 ounces club soda
- lemon twist
- Step 1 Place a good amount of glass in a high ball glass and set aside.
- Step 2 Using a cocktail shaker, add a handful of ice, the St. Germain and wine. Shake vigorously for 20 seconds. Strain into the prepared cocktail class. Top with club soda and a lemon twist.
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