One night, after we took family pictures (did I mention that? We took family pictures) and before we had dinner reservations, we stopped in to a restaurant that was just downstairs from our condo. SQ1 was always packed and the menu looked really good and inventive, but we stuck to the cocktail menu. The bar was on the small size but the cocktail list was creative and interesting. I ordered a drink called the Pepper Blossom, with grapefruit juice, lemon, basil, jalapeño, vodka, and St. Germaine, an elderflower liquor.
It was amazing. Tart and bright and herbaceous and a little floral, with just the slightest kick at the end from the jalapeño. I couldn’t wait to recreate it at home. And so I did!
I used mint instead of basil, Meyer lemon instead of regular lemons, and I sugared the rim of martini glass to make it just a little more tropical. The result wasn’t as good, but it was dang delicious. If you have a champagne coupe, well look at you, all fancy. If not, a martini glass will do.
The Pepper Blossom
2 ounces vodka (I love Titos!)
1 ounce St. Germaine (elderflower liquor)
2 ounces fresh grapefruit juice
Half a Meyer lemon, juiced (regular lemon works too; Meyer lemons are a little sweeter)
2 slices of jalapeño, seeds and all
4-5 mint leaves
1/2 teaspoon sugar, plus more for the rim of the glass
In the bottom of a shaker, add the jalapeño, mint, and sugar. Muddle them all together, then add grapefruit, lemon juice, vodka, and St. Germaine. Add ice and shake very well.
Rub lemon juice around the rim of the glass, then dip it in sugar that had been spread on a plate. Add a couple of ice cubes if you want. Strain the mixture into the glass and serve with extra mint leaves