Happy Hour

Drinking to a New Decade

I’d like to think that Gatsby would drink a drink like this, a simple and sophisticated blend of gin, Canton ginger, and lemon and shining like the gold stars above. Mix one up and be so Art Deco out on the floor as you ring in the new 20s tonight.

Gatsby Goldy

Shake first 3 ingredients with ice and strain over ice into lowball glass. Top with club soda and stir in gold cocktail glitter. Happy 2020!

Gatsby Goldy

Happy Hour

Happy (Birthday) Hour

We hosted our buddy Angela’s bday party a couple of weekends ago, and her only request was that I create a signature drink for the night–and could it be hot pink (as long as it tasted good and wasn’t too ‘college girl’)? Since her go-to is vodka and soda, I decided to keep it simple, and with the help of some internet magic, The Angela Cocktail was a great success. I probably made close to 30 drinks, and not one person complained about his/her hot pink glitter-lips. Here’s the recipe:

The Angela

Rim the glass edge in lemon juice and then edible tinker dust. Shake liquor and lemon juice with ice; strain into glass. Add a smidge of cocktail glitter; stir and witness the magic. Top with club soda and enjoy.

The Angela
Happy Hour

Drink for a Prince

We watched Purple Rain on Monday for The Movie Project, and I knew there had to be a drink out there that was lovely in lavender and just as delicious. I found one of my favorite cocktail recipes and modified it a bit. Let’s call this one “Purple Rain”:

Purple Rain

  • 2 oz. of your favorite gin
  • 1/2 oz. of Creme de Violette Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz. of St. Germain (elderflower liqueur)
  • a good squeeze of lime juice
  • edible glitter (buy it here or make it at home)

If you possess some of the magic that is edible glitter, garnish your glass rim with it. Add the remaining ingredients to a shaker and fill with ice. Shake, and strain into a small martini glass. Put on your raspberry beret and enjoy!

Happy Hour

Happy (Birthday) Hour

I created this drink last Thursday, in honor of my aunt’s birthday on 4/11. When I lived in Wisconsin with her and my uncle, we worked hard all day and played hard after, and we loved creating drinks and naming them (like my uncle Tim’s vodka and cran-raspberry mix, which Wendy and I named the ‘Mr. Barbie’). So to celebrate my aunt, here is a springy drink recipe:

The Wendy

  • 2 drops of lavender essential oil (be sure to use food-grade)
  • juice of half a Meyer lemon
  • 3/4 oz simple syrup
  • 1.5+ oz Tanqueray Rangpur gin
  • club, seltzer, or sparkling water

Shake lavender, lemon juice, simple syrup, and gin with ice. Strain into glass and top with seltzer. Enjoy!

The Wendy ingredients
Happy Hour

February Friday

As per usual, the first month of the year flew by. And what a month it was: full of snowstorm after snowstorm up north and in the Midwest, #myKonMari pictures on Instagram of beautifully-folded drawers and organized closets (did no one do any of the other categories??), and an enormous, happy onslaught of birthday cards and other mailbox surprises from a secret thing Jim did for my 40th birthday this past Sunday. We got to see a dozen relatives and friends in a 12-day whirlwind of houseguests and travelers passing through on their way to warmer climates. Before that, I flew to Indianapolis for a few days to help my uncle with a small organizing project and got to spend time with my aunt and Nanny for a bit, but the main event in Indy was consuming good food and libations. Uncle Chet (or U.C. as I like to call him) enjoys cooking, so we turned on the French cooking station on Pandora while he whipped up a delicious homemade curry and we took turns mixing just about the best, simplest, and strongest gin drink out there: The Bee’s Knees. Here is the recipe:

The Bee’s Knees

Add ingredients into shaker with ice and shake; strain into small cocktail glass. Garnish with lemon slice. Pinkies up!

*Honey Syrup (makes 8 oz or 240 ml)

  • 1 cup (340 g) honey
  • 4 oz (120 ml) water

Combine the honey and water in a small saucepan and warm over medium heat until well combined. Let cool and store in a sealed container in the fridge for 1 to 2 months.


For my 40th, my uncle sent me the same shaker set he had, a professional Boston cocktail shaker with every tool you could possibly need and several you didn’t know you had to have. I broke it in to make Bee’s Knees for myself and good friend Kelly who was staying with us last week. This drink tastes like lemon water ice and goes down waaaay more easily. We used a local organic gin (which she promptly renamed ‘NippleTitty’ after just a few sips), organic lemons, and the leftover honey syrup from the last drink we tried. What kind of secret-fantasy-bartender was I before owning these fancy tools? I think I finally feel like a grown-up. Mercy buckets, U.C.! 😉

Kelly, Julian, my dad (Gerry), me, and Jim by Charleston Harbor on 1/25/19
Happy Hour

Friday, Jr.

I’ve always loved Thursdays. Maybe it’s because that was when the best TV shows were on growing up, or maybe because it’s the 4th weekday and 4 is my favorite number. Maybe it’s the word ‘Thursday’ itself, more interesting to me than the other weekday words. Thursday always felt more like Friday to me than Friday ever did. Maybe because Thursday held the anticipation of the weekend, yet was not the weekend just yet. The day before payday. Thursday consistently just has a good feel, in my book. Studying art history, I loved the painting The Week with Four Thursdays by Balthus, though I’m now realizing it probably had more to do with the title and probably a little something to do with the ever-present Balthus cat. What can I say? My brain’s a weirdo.

In any case, I chose Thursday to post some of my favorite Happy Hour recipes. I’m a gin or whiskey girl, mostly by default since I have sulfite and yeast allergies and anything else makes me feel wretched the next day. But it’s also fun to say that I’m a gin or whiskey girl. My first recipe comes from the beautiful book The Art of the Bar Cart, by Vanessa Dina and Antonis Achilleos and published by Chronicle Books in 2017 (I almost said last year, but it isn’t anymore. Sheesh.):

Spicy Pomelo

  • 3 thin slices jalapeno plus 1 slice for garnish
  • 2 oz (60 ml) gin
  • 3 oz (90 ml) fresh grapefruit juice
  • 1/2 oz (15 ml) honey syrup*
  • 1 grapefruit slice for garnish

Muddle 3 jalapeno slices in a shaker with the liquid ingredients. Add ice and shake. Double strain into a collins glass with an ice cube. Garnish with the grapefruit slice and remaining jalapeno slice.

*Honey Syrup (makes 8 oz or 240 ml)

  • 1 cup (340 g) honey
  • 4 oz (120 ml) water

Combine the honey and water in a small saucepan and warm over medium heat until well combined. Let cool and store in a sealed container in the fridge for 1 to 2 months.


As Jim (the Mr.) and I like to make fun of so many Pinterest posts by saying….

“I’m trying this TONIGHT!!”

And we did 😋