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Black Currant Royale

Looking to lighten up your alcohol consumption in the New Year? Here’s a simple approach: When making a cocktail, replace the liqueur in the recipe with an equal amount of Spiker’s Shrubs. For example, the classic Kir Royale is made with champagne and creme de cassis — a liqueur made from black currants.

Creme de cassis has a liquor content of about 15%. Spiker’s Shrubs contain no alcohol. So…you can “spike” your champagne with our Black Currant Shrub and enjoy the natural, deep, rich taste of black currants without having the alcohol content of your drink increase.

A slightly less boozey version of the classic Kir Royale, using Spiker's Black Currant shrub.
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Siena Spritzer

To celebrate our new relationship with Siena Farms of Sudbury MA, we have created a cocktail in its honor: the Siena Spritzer. It’s a lovely pre-dinner cocktail (or something to sip solo while you’re slaving away in a hot kitchen before your friends/family/guests arrive).

Because the “other” Siena is located in the heart of Tuscany, we chose a semi-sweet (semi-dry?) Italian Bianco vermouth as the base for the drink. This style of  vermouth is clear (not amber), and has an herbaceous nose, warm spices, and mild bitterness tempered with a bright, crisp citrus finish. Continue reading Siena Spritzer

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Dark and Stormy

When the weather turns dark and stormy, this drink is the ideal companion. Dark rum combined with a spritzy, high-octane ginger fizz and a splash of lime warms you up and quenches your thirst at the same time.

Although standard recipes call for ginger beer, it’s not always easy to find a brand with enough of a kick. That’s why Spiker’s Ginger Bite shrub is the perfect stand-in. You can add as much or little of it as you like to get just the right amount of ginger power without diluting the beverage overall.

Start with two ounces of dark rum, and vary the amount of “fizz” based on your personal tastes: anywhere from three to five ounces is a good target.

 

 

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Sticky Peanuts with Ginger Bite, Sriracha, and Thai Basil

You know those bar nuts they put out when you order a beer or another pop? Forget them. They are about to become the swishy suburbanites you’ll visit occasionally, once you get acquainted with these street-wise peanuts spiked with Spiker’s Ginger Bite Shrub, Sriracha, and Thai basil. Continue reading Sticky Peanuts with Ginger Bite, Sriracha, and Thai Basil

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Spiker’s homemade maraschino cherries

Once you experience the taste and texture of true maraschino cherries — tart red cherries simmered and aged in a slightly sweet cherry liqueur — you’ll never go back to those day-glow jarred red marbles sold in supermarkets and liquor stores.

Trouble is, it’s hard to find the top-shelf Luxardo-brand cherries. And if you want to make your own, you might even have a tough time locating Luxardo or Marasca liqueur. A better bet is to look for Kirschwasser — roughly half the price of the other liqueurs — and give it some added sweetness and depth by using Spiker’s Sour Cherry Plum shrub. (Sour Cherry Plum shrub is made from Michigan sour cherries, dried plums, and aged for a month to develop a rich, deep flavor.)

Prep time is less than 10 minutes. But let the cherries sit at least a week to develop the flavor. Due to the alcohol content, you should be able to store the cherries in a cool, dark space (or a fridge) for months.

 

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Manhattan Ice Cream Soda with Sour Cherry Plum shrub

Looking for a fun and festive way to enjoy the flavors of the classic Manhattan cocktail? This grown-up ice cream soda is just the ticket. Less sweet than its Old Fashioned friend, the Manhattan enjoys a bit of herbaceous complexity thanks to the use of sweet vermouth (which isn’t as sugar as its name belies).

We have seen several Manhattan ice cream soda recipes online, but they include a dollop of spiked, sweetened whipped cream which is totally unnecessary. Just use a premium ice cream and premium ingredients — including the essential Spiker’s Sour Cherry Plum Shrub — and a foamy head will build at the top of the glass, letting the spirit of the spirit shine through. Cheers!

 

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Georgian Adjika with Sour Cherry Plum Shrub

If you like the kick of a good salsa but your tastebuds are looking for a more complex flavor profile, we have a suggestion: consider Adjika, the classic condiment from Georgia-Azerbaijan. Also known as Adzhika and Ajika, Russians often refer to this as “Red Salt” and others sometimes call it “Russian Pesto.” But this savory, spicy dish isn’t anywhere close to the texture, fragrance, or mild-mannered flavor profile of pesto. Most of the recipes include hot and sweet red peppers along with a host of savory herbs including fenugreek, mint, savory, and cilantro along with coriander seed. Although we have seen a number of variations which toss shredded apples, carrots, and even tomatoes into the mix, in its purist form, it’s all about the peppers. Woohoo! Continue reading Georgian Adjika with Sour Cherry Plum Shrub