Matthew Ficke of the Columbia Room in Washington, D.C. serves this fruity, effervescent drink during the holiday season and now, so can you.
Note: Stay away from 'cranberry juice cocktail' for this. Any brand of 100% unsweetened cranberry juice will work fine, says Ficke. The baked apple bitters are available online.
- For the Homemade Spiced Cranberry Syrup:
- 2 cups unsweetened 100% cranberry juice such as Knudsen Just Cranberry
- 1 cup sugar
- 10 whole cardamom pods
- 2 star anise pods
- 5 whole cloves
- 1/2 tablespoon whole allspice berries
- One 2-inch knob fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
- Zest of 1 orange, removed with a vegetable peeler
- For the Punch:
- 1 cup Cointreau
- 1 cup Spiced Cranberry Syrup
- 6 dashes Bar Keep Baked Apple Bitters
- 1 bottle dry sparkling wine
- Garnish: lemon slices
For the Spiced Cranberry Syrup: Heat the cranberry juice sugar, cardamom, star anise, cloves, allspice, ginger, and orange zest in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Simmer for 5 minutes, then remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Strain through a fine-meshed strainer, discard solids, and reserve.
To make the Punch: Combine the Cointreau, cranberry syrup, and bitters in large bowl. Stir to mix. Fill with ice or a large ice block, top with entire bottle sparkling wine, garnish with lemon slices and serve.