Cheers to The New Year With An Arugula Gimlet

A riff on a classic with a festive bold hue.
A riff on a classic with a festive bold hue.

What more festive way to celebrate the holidays and usher in the new year than with a great cocktail.

A vibrant green one at that with a deeply peppery taste.

“Arugula Gimlet” is a recipe in the new book, “Every Cocktail Has A Twist” (Countryman Press), of which I received a review copy.

It’s by the Sonoma-based couple, Carey Jones, a food and spirits writer who was the managing editor of Serious Eats, and John McCarthy, a mixologist and sports writer.

What makes this book especially fun is that it includes recipes for 25 classic drinks, but then goes further to provide 200 variations on them.

So, if you love a Bloody Mary, you just might be tempted to venture outside the box to make the “Green Snapper” that swaps out vodka for gin instead, and includes a veritable green juice to go with all that tomato juice.

If you’re a Classic Margarita fan, you might zero in on the “Spicy Margarita” that’s amped up with serrano-infused tequila or give the “Beergarita” a whirl, which includes Mexican lager to make a less boozy version.

Or venture beyond the traditional Tom Collins to enjoy the “Trudy Collins” that gets a wintery boost from blood orange juice and mint.

The classic gimlet is gin, lime juice and sugar, all shaken with ice. With the “Arugula Gimlet,” fresh ginger slices and plentiful leaves of arugula get muddled in a shaker before being filled with gin, lime juice, simple syrup, and ice.

Just look at that color.
Just look at that color.

All that pummeling of the arugula means you end up with a drink that is a gorgeously green. It’s also one that carries a deep peppery kick from the ginger and bitter greens.

I didn’t have a coupe, so I used a fancy martini glass that was a wedding present instead. I garnished the cocktail with a slice of lime, but maybe I cut mine too thick, as it ended up sinking, which is why it’s not visible in the photos.

This cocktail is potent and lively tasting. Plus, just think: You can valiantly attest to starting a new year off right by drinking your vegetables.

Wishing everyone a delicious holiday, and a most wonderful 2024!
Wishing everyone a delicious holiday, and a most wonderful 2024!

Arugula Gimlet

(Makes 1 cocktail)

1 piece ginger (approximately 1-inch long, 1/2-inch thick, peeled and quartered)

1/2 cup packed arugula leaves

2 ounces gin

1 ounce lime juice

3/4 ounce simple syrup (see recipe below)

1 lime wheel for garnish

In the bottom of a cocktail shaker, muddle the ginger firmly until well smashed. Add the arugula leaves and muddle further until wilted and releasing some liquid. Add all the remaining ingredients. Fill the shaker with ice and seal it. Shake vigorously for 15 seconds and double strain into a chilled coupe. Garnish with a very thin lime wheel.

Simple Syrup

(Makes approximately 7 ounces)

4 ounces water

4 ounces granulated white sugar

In a kettle or microwave, heat the water until nearly boiling. Add the sugar and stir until it dissolves completely. Let cool to room temperature before using.

From “Every Cocktail Has A Twist”

More Winter Cocktails to Enjoy: Buddah-Cello

And: Tony Negroni

And: Duende’s Turmeric Tonic

And: Waverly Place Echo by Scott Beattie

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  • We’ll make this stunner when we get our sense of taste back. Hmmm, maybe drinking it will HELP get our sense of taste back. You said the glasses were a wedding present, any idea what store they came from?

  • Hi Lizzie: Oh no, did you get Covid during the holidays like we did? Ugh. I hope you are on the mend. Just take it easy and don’t push yourself too much too soon. The martini glasses were made by Annieglass in Santa Cruz, which makes all sorts of beautiful glassware. I don’t see them on the site now, but maybe they will bring them back or something similar at some point. Wishing you a healthy and and happy new year!

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