At The Citizen, we are blessed with a wide variety of spirits, liqueurs, fruits, syrups, and fresh juices to use in cocktails. We have innovative bartenders who enjoy mixing up all kinds of drinks. But more importantly, we have a fun, daring, and experimental clientele that allows us to play and create drinks that suit each and every person.
If you are one of those people who lets your bartender make a unique cocktail for you, then there is a good chance you have tasted St. Germain. It is personally one of my favorite liqueurs, and I use it frequently in all different kinds of drinks.
St. Germain is made in France, created from Elderflowers hand-picked at the base of the Alps mountain range. It is quite unique because there are only about forty to fifty men who take in this harvest of blossoms, and then according to St. Germain lore, delivered by bicycle. I doubt there are more than a handful of companies that can claim their employees hand-pick the ingredients for their products. Since it is a small staff and there are a limited amount of elderflowers per season, St. Germain is made in limited quantities. When you see the bottle, you can almost picture the story – a very classic, unique bottle, coming from a small town in France, being made by a small company whose employees still ride bicycles around the village.
The story seems classic and timeless, much like the taste of St. Germain. The base is an eau de vie, which translates to “water of life.” It is a fruit brandy, made mainly of peaches, pears, apples, and plums. Commonly, eau de vie is served as a digestif, but in the case with St. Germain, it is used as a base, which the elderflower blossoms are then added to create this delicate liqueur. Both the scent and taste are subtle, yet incredibly rich, full of floral notes as well as a blend of delicious fruits. You can add St. Germain to practically any base spirit, and it can compliment and add a whole new dimension to a cocktail.
Two of my favorite drinks with St. Germain, which I serve frequently here at The Citizen, are the Cherub’s Cup cocktail, as well as my own personal twist on the St. Germain Cocktail, which I call Lisa’s Fizzle. Both include champagne or dry sparkling wine, which I happen to think works amazingly well with this liqueur. In fact, some of the most popular drinks made with St. Germain include citrus and sparkling wine. Here are the recipes and pictures for each of the two previously mentioned cocktails:
1 oz. St. Germain
2 oz. Vodka
¾ oz. Lemon juice
¼ oz. Simple syrup
1 muddled strawberry
Sparkling wine (I use Poema Cava)
Muddle strawberry with simple syrup; add St. Germain, vodka, and lemon juice; shake over ice and double strain over ice in large wine glass; top with Cava, and add strawberry slices for garnish.
This cocktail is fruity and refreshing, and never fails to impress any guest who wants something light, flirty, and delicious.
¾ oz. St. Germain
¾ oz. Veev Acai Liqueur
Splash lemon juice
Sparkling wine (Poema Cava)
1 sugar cube
Combine St. Germain, Veev Acai, and lemon juice; shake over ice and strain into cocktail glass or champagne flute; top with champagne; add sugar cube (for a little sweetness and the visual effects are pretty cool); long lemon twist for garnish.
For someone looking for a light, airy, and fizzy cocktail filled with bubbles and flavor, this drink works like a charm. I named it after my friend Lisa, because despite the fact that her boyfriend is one of our bartenders, she still requests that I make her the cocktail every time, because no one does it like me!
Enjoy St. Germain, and come down and ask us to mix up one of these drinks, or to create a whole new one just for you, according to what you like and what you don’t. It’s an amazing liqueur, and adds curious depth and an abundance of flavors to so many other spirits.