For some reason the moments when I’m first falling asleep or just coming to in the morning are when I tend to have sudden flashes of insight or inspiration. It’s kind of like I do my best thinking when I’m sleeping. The other day as I was waking up to a pitch black morning (thanks daylight savings), I had a vision of a frosty pale purple coconut cocktail with violet liqueur and berries. Doesn’t that just sound dreamy? This is literally the stuff my dreams are made of.
Fast forward a day or two and I found some great looking organic cherries at the store, which is pretty unusual for this time of year. After flipping through The Flavor Bible for some cherry flavor pairing inspiration, cherry + coconut caught my eye, and I remembered my dreamy violet and coconut cocktail. I decided to make a cherry and green cardamom syrup and see how that would jive with coconut milk, violet liqueur, and a little citrus.
The result wasn’t really anything like my original vision, but it was delicious! I thought that the cherry syrup would contribute more to the overall color of the drink, but it didn’t seem to effect the bluish color of the violet liqueur at all. I wonder if cooking the cherry syrup for longer would produce a deeper color? Let me know if you try it!
There’s something very satisfying to me about a cocktail that is at once sweet, tart, and creamy, and lately I keep coming back to this style of drink, especially as an after dinner, dessert-style drink.
Beyond the botanicals, I wanted to use a spirit that was fresh, floral, and unique, so I chose Uncle Val’s Botanical Gin. If you haven’t had it before, it’s not quite like any other gin. It’s not the most juniper-forward gin, but it is crisp and FULL of flavor, most notably cucumber, lavender, sage, and lemon. My dad turned me on to it, and it’s become one of our favorites to enjoy in non-traditional martinis when we get together. This recipe is also really tasty with a more traditional gin, but I recommend substituting with another floral gin like Nolet’s or Hendrick’s if you don’t have Uncle Val’s on hand.
This might not be the most seasonal winter cocktail, but if you’re looking for something special to treat yourself to this weekend, pick up some Uncle Val’s and dust off that violet liqueur!
If you make this or any of my recipes, tag me on Instagram @moodymixologist!
Cherry Violet Coconut Gin Cooler
1.5 oz Uncle Val’s Botanical Gin
1.5 oz coconut milk
.5 oz The Bitter Truth Violet Liqueur
.5 oz cherry + green cardamom syrup
.5 oz lime juice
To make the cherry + green cardamom syrup, add a 1/2 cup of washed, halved and pitted cherries with 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of water, and 4 slightly crushed green cardamom pods to a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, or just until the fruit begins to break down. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Once cool, strain into a clean glass jar and store leftovers in the fridge.
Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with ice and shake until chilled.
Strain into a glass filled with crushed ice and top with more crushed ice.
Garnish with frozen berries and a cherry on top, or as desired.