As the New Year approaches, we’re all about bringing out the bubbly and enjoying artful winter cocktails that taste just as good as they look. And while we love to espouse our skills, we’re going to have to admit we need a little creative help to fashion an enticing cocktail that makes our palate—and in some cases all participating imbibers—dance. To aid us in our quest to produce a worthy concoction, we went straight to one of our favorite resident mixologists, Nicole Wright. Nicole is not only the creator of INSPIRED—a curated cocktail company that offers mobile bars, cocktail classes, custom cocktail kits, and beverage consulting—but she currently helms the bar at Freemans, a NYC institution. In addition, with over 15 years of experience working as a cocktail bartender, we are thrilled she is willing to share one of her recipes with us—including how to create the ever elusive rosemary syrup. We were also delighted to learn that Nicole embraces the benefits of clear ice—a massive, yet little understood perk we offer with our Clear Ice Machine. There is truly nothing better for cocktails than Clear Ice. But we digress. Below, please enjoy Nicole’s step-by-step instructions on how to make a delectable and eye-catching Pomegranate Punch!
A sparkling & festive winter punch, easy to make ahead and share at holiday gatherings with family and friends
1/2 oz rosemary syrup*
1 oz pomegranate juice
1/2 oz Averna amaro
1 1/2 oz American gin (I like Dorothy Parker)
1 oz sparkling water
2 oz sparkling wine
Build in a tall glass or wine glass over ice
Garnish with orange peel and rosemary sprigs
Punch (serves 15-20)
1 1/4 cup rosemary syrup*
2 cups pomegranate juice
1 cup Averna Amaro
1 750ml bottle American gin
1 cup sparkling water
2 750ml bottles of sparkling wine
Combine ingredients in a pitcher or punch bowl. Add ice.
Garnish punch with orange slices, pomegranate seeds & rosemary sprigs
To serve: Ladle or pour over ice and garnish with a rosemary sprigs and orange peel
300 grams white sugar
300 grams water
30 grams fresh rosemary
In a small pot, add the sugar and water.
Heat & stir until combined.
Add the rosemary, bring to a boil and then immediately reduce heat to a simmer.
Simmer on low for approximately 10 minutes.
Remove from heat and allow to cool with the rosemary in the syrup.
Once cool, strain off the herbs and store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three weeks.
Clear ice is the best ice for cocktails, in general, for two reasons. One is because it is free of impurities and there is no risk of altering the flavor profile of your drink. Secondly, clear ice is much more dense which means it allows for more control when diluting your cocktails.
When it comes to hosting and serving a punch like this one, you definitely want to use clear ice because it melts at a much slower pace than regular ice and you want your punch to be cold but not overdiluted!
I also love using clear ice because it allows the beautiful red color to shine and I can show off my fancy glassware!
Follow Nicole on Instagram: @inspired_curatedcocktails