Make your own cocktails, and you no longer are slave to the big corporate industry. You can make cocktails from local fruits, or even foraged fruits, if you know how. All you need are a few glasses and the ability to dance and shake your glass.
What is a Cocktail?
Cocktails have a long history, ever since the Romans would drop a piece of toast in a glass of wine ‘to toast’ each other’s good health. Today, a cocktail has no toast, but tends to be a spirit mixed with a mixer like ginger ale or tonic water. It’s also a good way to dilute (and therefore drink less) alcohol.
Most spirits are veggie-friendly, although be careful with some gins and vodkas (organic ones are best). Campari no longer uses beetle juice but the red colour is not natural (it ain’t beetroot, that’s for sure). As regards Tequila, most don’t contain ‘a worm in the bottle’, but its cousin mezcal may.
If growing fruits & herbs to make cocktails, see make your garden safe for pets to know toxic plants to avoid. Also avoid cocoa mulch, pine mulch & fresh compost near pets, use humane safe slug/snail deterrents and no-dig gardening methods to protect earthworms and other garden friends.
- Wild Cocktails from the Midnight Apothecary is by the creator of a pop-up cocktail bar on a roof garden in London, where Lottie Muir grows many ingredients for her mixes. Moving from flowerbed to bar, she rustles up seasonal plant-powered cocktails, made with garden and forage harvests. Recipes include Gorse Collins and Wild Cherry Rye Manhattan.
- Wild Mocktails & Healthy Cocktails is another book by Lottie, offering new drinks including alcohol-free. Recipes include Cherry Blossom & Flowering Currant Cordial, Thyme & Licorice Syrup, Iced Spring Tonic Tea, Wild Negroni and Windfall Punch.
- The Wildcrafted Cocktail is by forager Ellen who shows you how to make drinks from common flowers, berries, roots and leaves. Try Quick Pickled Daylily Buds (lilies are very toxic to pets, so keep away from them), Roe Hip Syrup, Chanterelle-infused Rum, Stinger in the Rye and Tree-tini.
Homemade Cocktails from Cookie + Kate
Cookie + Kate is one of the best quality recipe blogs on the web (all wholefoods & vegetarian, mostly vegan). Kathryne cooks up healthy meals while her canine sidekick Cookie looks on. Read her book Love Real Food (a best-seller in the States). This chef is renowned for her simple cocktails, so try a few:
- Cucumber Mint Gimlet (ideal for summer)
- Tom Collins Cocktail (like grownup lemonade)
- Classic Aperol Spritz (an Italian classic)
- This recipe for Kate’s Moscow Mules only has 3 ingredients: vodka, ginger beer and lime. She says if you can’t find food-safe copper mugs, use a cocktail glass, as copper-lined mugs inside can be toxic for acidic foods: