Elderflower Euphoria

During my various tastings and visits to liquor stores, my gaze is often caught by a majestic, striking bottle of St. Germain’s Elderflower liqueur.  I also see it more and more in restaurants and bars — of course, I had no idea what it actually was (my best guess was….flowers of some kind).  Upon a web search, I found a helpful description in the Huffington Post:

The liqueur is made from elderflower, a small, white starry flower that blooms through the spring and summer. In Europe, the flower is used in many foods and drinks, but in the U.S. it’s gaining popularity in the form of this liqueur.

Saint Germain liqueur seems to bottle the taste of the these warm floral notes. Still produced in an artisanal manner, the liqueur is made from flowers that are gathered from the hillsides in the French Alps during a short four- to-six-week period in spring. According to the company’s website, the picked flowers are bicycled to a collection depot (yep, bicycled) where they are immediately macerated to preserve the fresh flavors of the bloom. Extracting the flavors of this flower is not an easy process, and the Saint Germain company keeps theirs a family secret.

Sounds good to me!  Without a recipe in mind, I grabbed a bottle during my last store run, knowing I’d find SOME use for the art deco’ed alcohol; a bit of searching led me to “The Euphoria,” containing:

1/2 ounce simple syrup
4 sage leaves, divided
1 ounce gin
1 ounce St-Germain
1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice

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I wasn’t able to get sage leaves but this was a great summer drink regardless — freshness abounds and a cool, sweet sensation carries the gin through.  I’ve been on quite the role lately with my home mixes and the Euphoria kept the trend going.  Also a great drink to have with lots of ice, just a wonderful treat on a humid evening.  Again, another clean and beautiful drink that I’d love to make in mass quantities for a BBQ or dinner party.

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