Premixed cocktails are tricky to do right. Citrus flavor often comes out oily and lacks the bright acidity that is needed to cut through sweetness. But this premixed cocktail, poured over ice, has more tartness than I expected, moving it toward balance. The only problem: a weird aftertaste from the artificial sweeteners.
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Last Friday Bottom Shelf research coordinator Emily and I kicked off the holiday party season with our annual two-person celebration of Larry Bird's birthday. We ate deviled eggs and sausaged chicken and drank all manner of fowl-themed things, including Old Crow, Eagle Rare, and Bluebird Bitter.
As a party host, I haven't had a ton of luck with premixed drinks of any kind. So when a bottle of Eppa Superfruit Sangria arrived at my door, I didn't have high expectations. But the marketing for this premix had me a little curious: it's certified organic and full of buzzwords like pomegranate and acai, plus blood orange juice, which tends to be tasty. It seemed at least worth cracking open the screwcap.
I hate wasting food and drink. If I live long enough to be inducted into the Assistant Little League Coaches' Hall of Fame, I will owe it all to my juicer, which I bought solely to avoid throwing out neglected vegetables. Every Sunday morning I buy every green thing at the farmer's market, and every Saturday I turn it into juice that surely counteracts the week I spent chugging Trader Joe's frozen burritos.
Drinks editor Maggie whipped up a lot of Cinco de Mayo coverage recently, which led her to write what is both the kindest and cruelest email I've ever received: "I would give you so much good tequila if you were here right now." The kindness is obvious and the cruelty comes in the implied follow-up: "But since you're outside of hand-delivery range and there's no such thing as UPS, how about if I just forward you a press release about a new mayonnaise-flavored vodka?" But though I'm sometimes frustrated by my inability to extract decent booze from Serious Eats, for the most part I've made peace with the fact that all I can expect from this gig are fame, fortune, and corned beef schnapps.