My ladyfriends have been working overtime in the reproduction department. Just yesterday my friend Denise give us the gorgeous Oona Liv,
and a few weeks ago the beautiful Magnolia Harper was introduced to the world thanks to my friend Kathleen.
And a least a few more friends have buns in the oven that are due to be fully baked in the next few weeks or so. This means I’ve had more opportunities (i.e., baby showers!) to work on my mocktails lately.
I think mocktails are a tricky thing. Often they just end up tasting like fruit juice. Refreshing, but it doesn’t exactly satisfy the hankering for a well-made cocktail.
My approach is to try to incorporate some herb or spice into my mocktails, to give them that little indefinable something that tricks the palate into thinking you’re drinking something more dangerous than you are. Some of my mocktails contain a lavender-infused honey syrup, and I’ve played around (a bit less successfully) with hibiscus flowers. The fresh muddled mint makes the virgin version of a mojito (which I call either a fauxjito or a nojito) mighty tasty, and you can mix things up a bit by trying other herbs, such as thyme.
But for years one of my favorite mocktails has been some version of this drink, which gets a subtle spicy punch from an infusion of cloves. For a long time this drink didn’t have a name, but then a few weeks ago I attended a baby shower where I made this drink for the guests. When I learned that the code name for the baby-to-be was Flora Pomadora, I knew I had the new name for this wintry pomegranate drink.
Here’s how to make them yourself. If you don’t want to shake these individually, you can also serve them in a pitcher or punch bowl by multiplying the recipe by 8 or 16 and doubling the amount of sparkling water, which should be stirred in at the last possible moment to preserve the drink’s fizz. When I’m serving it this way, I like to freeze the pomegranate seeds inside decoratively shaped ice cubes (I actually make flower-shaped ice cubes using a Bundt pan that makes miniature rose-shaped cakes).
1 oz pomegranate juice
1 oz mango nectar
1/4 oz clove tea (see below)
1/4 oz freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 oz simple syrup
1/2 oz chilled sparkling water
Pomegranate seeds, for garnish (optional)
Combine the pomegranate juice, mango nectar, clove tea, lime juice, and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker with ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a cocktail glass. Top off with the sparkling water and garnish with the pomegranate seeds.
In heatproof bowl, pour 1 cup boiling water over 3 tablespoons of whole cloves. Let steep overnight, strain, and discard the cloves. The tea will keep for at least a few weeks, covered, in the refrigerator.