Modern Classics

Traditional cocktail styles re-emerge for spring, waking up your taste buds with fresh new flavour twists.

Canadians tend to get a little giddy at the first signs of spring. There really is nothing like the promise of those first warm days, especially with a cocktail as fresh as the season in hand. We’ve taken five time-honoured bar classics: fizz, smash, sparkler, flip and nog, and given them new life and a modern, worldly twist. With a focus on freshness, our Creamy Vanilla Orange Nog is a retelling of the eggnog most of us are familiar with from Christmastime, treated to a makeover with fresh orange juice and vanilla, while our Ginger Gin Fizz is super refreshing and a little spicy with Thai basil and freshly grated ginger root. These cocktails run the gamut from bright and light to rich and luxurious; there’s one for every type of occasion. Imagine a sunny Sunday brunch with Cider Blackberry Sparklers for everyone; a toast to longer days with a Lemon Smash; or a chilly early spring evening at home with a silky-smooth Mango Flip.

 

Mango Flip

Like nogs, flips are silky and frothy and call for fresh, raw whole eggs. Unlike nogs, they don’t call for cream or milk. Think of this as a dreamy, grown-up mango lassi. Serve with a few chunks of frozen mango; there is no better bevvie for putting out the fire of spicy Thai or Indian food!

Lemon Smash

Smashes are fabulously refreshing and flavourful muddled drinks in which an aromatic ingredient — a herb, berry or peel, for example — is smashed or muddled, often with sugar acting as a kind of sweet grit. A spirit is added, and often the mixture is topped up with something fizzy and lots of crushed or shaved ice. Mint Julep is a classic smash.

GET THE RECIPE

Ginger Gin Fizz

Fizzes are shaken cocktails that start with a base spirit, some ice and a flavouring agent or two — simple syrup or fruit juice, for example. Once the shaken mixture is poured into the glass, it’s topped up with something fizzy: tonic, soda, pop or cider. Fizzes are lovely for spring sipping! This modern gin and ginger version is sweet and spicy.

GET THE RECIPE

Cider Blackberry Sparkler

A trendy play on classic Champagne cocktails, cider cocktails consist of a large portion of ice-cold cider (from apples, pears or other fruit; dry or semisweet) — poured over a drop of something stronger or sweeter or more fruity — or all three. These pretty, almost layered drinks are super-easy and elegant. This recipe is a breeze to increase, so it’s great for parties! Save any leftover purée in a container in the fridge for up to four days.

GET THE RECIPE

Creamy Vanilla-Orange Nog

Christmas isn’t the only time for nog! Made with fresh, raw, whole eggs and cream or milk, nogs are rich, creamy and frothy — perfect for brunch. Combining vanilla and orange gives this velvety treat its delightful flavour, reminiscent of Creamsicles.