Prepare to make a brand new holiday tradition, friends. Isn’t this a gorgeous drink? Just you try to tell me that it doesn’t exude The Merry. It totally does. This cranberry clove sparkling margarita is looks as though someone poured Santa into a cup. Given the fact that it will add instant feliz to any navidad fiesta, you should absolutely serve this at your holiday party.
Ah, December. Twinkling lights, brown-paper packages and a tall cranberry clove sparkling margarita served ice cold. What? Is that not a part of your holiday tradition? If it’s not yet, it will be soon.
While turkey is widely served at Thanksgiving, Christmas meals run the gamut right? I’ve got friends who do an Italian fish stew for Christmas Eve, and others who opt for lasagna. I would guess that turkey and ham are the traditional favorites. My family doesn’t do any of those. For the longest time, we’ve served homemade enchiladas with rice and beans on Christmas day. These cranberry clove sparkling margaritas are the perfect festive cocktail to serve alongside our not-so-traditional holiday meal.
This festive Christmas cocktail is both tart and sweet with an unexpected zip of warm baking spices derived from the addition of a clove-infused simple syrup. I’m telling you, every sip will raise your holiday spirits. Pinky swear. And with the addition of some bubbly (water, not champagne), you will be warmed from the inside out long before you can finish the chorus to Baby, It’s Cold Outside.
And if you really want to create a showstopping Christmas cocktail, you can do like I did and rim the glasses in shimmer. I did it by dipping the rim of the glass into melted white chocolate candy coating and then sprinkling on coarse sugar before the candy coating hardened. Isn’t it so pretty? In the interest of full disclosure, I must admit that drinking the cocktail from the sugar-coated rim wasn’t entirely pleasant. If you’re going to rim your glasses, I’d recommend sipping the drink through a straw. Cheers!
- 3 oz. 100% cranberry juice (not cocktail, and preferably not from concentrate)
- 3 oz. clove simple syrup (recipe follows)
- 6 oz. of fresh cranberries
- 3 oz. fresh lime juice
- 3 oz. tequila
- 2 oz. orange liqueur
- 2 oz. sparkling water
For the clove simply syrup:
- 1-2 tablespoons whole cloves
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup sugar
To make the clove simple syrup:
- We're going for a strong syrup here so that we don't water down our margarita unnecessarily. To that end, combine one cup of water and 1-2 tablespoons of whole cloves in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer (uncovered) until you've reduced the water by half. Add one cup sugar and stir until sugar is thoroughly dissolved. Set aside to cool.
To make the margarita:
- Combine cranberry juice, syrup, cranberries and lime juice in a blender. Blend until the mixture is liquified--no chunks. Strain mixture over a fine mesh sieve into a mason jar. Add tequila and orange liqueur and mix well. Pour desired amount over ice into a glass, topping off with the sparkling water and giving it a little swizzle. This recipe makes two servings, so make sure that you spread the sparkling water appropriately between the two glasses. We rimmed our glasses with white chocolate and sparkling sugar if only because it makes for a pretty presentation. Cheers!
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