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A Wedding: Signature Cocktails

by on November 23, 2010 · 22 comments

From the Archives (posted July 19, 2010):  We know we have reposted a bit lately (life has been a bit busy), but we thought we should show you this one more time for the following two reasons:

  1. These two winter cocktails would be a perfect addition to the holidays!
  2. The wedding we wrote about in this post is coming up this Saturday!  Yep, thats right, this Saturday, November 27, 2010, my best friend Erin will be walking down the aisle! And yes, we will all be enjoying the winter rum punch (shown below) later that evening.

{on that note, congratulations Erin and Jim, we wish you a lifetime of happiness, friendship and love}

Plus, this seemed like the perfect opportunity to wish all of those who celebrate it, Happy Thanksgiving!  Enjoy!

~

When I was asked quite a few months ago to be the Maid of Honor at my best friend’s wedding, I just could not be more .. well, honored.  We have had lots of fun looking for dresses, flowers, decorations and much more, but I must say one of the tastiest jobs as the Maid of Honor has been helping my dear friend and her future husband to choose a signature cocktail to serve at their wedding reception!  Now, we must admit, these two drink recipes are more fitting for the winter, but as Erin and Jim’s wedding will be at the end of November and we know you appreciate a good cocktail any time of the year, we thought we would tell you about the winners.

Our advice – bookmark this for when it starts to get a little chilly outside, it will be worth the wait!

Armed with rum, triple sec, vanilla cognac, pears and many more ingredients Erin and Jim showed up on our doorstep ready to get to work and test our their picks for a signature cocktail.  I believe somewhere between the door knock and the shakers coming out at least one of us quoted “it’s a dirty job, but someone’s gotta do it!”

If you want to see more about our day of sampling winter cocktails, check out Art Without Pretense, where Erin shares her thoughts of the day and talks about our process of recipe testing and taking photos for this very post.

After making each drink, two went straight to the top.  The first, was a pear vanilla sparkler made by muddling ripe pears into a mixture of lemon juice, vanilla cognac (Navan), light rum and a bit of honey syrup for a touch of sweetness then finished with some champagne.  This, was my favorite, the aroma was incredible … in fact, I would go as far to say that the aroma from that drink should be considered for perfumes, candles and any other possible fragrance used by or around me!  The taste was just as lovely, slightly sweet from the vanilla and honey, but leveled out with a nice punch of rum and sparkle from the champagne.  While this one was quite the hit, trying to imagine a bartender making these for over 100 guests at a wedding was a little difficult, so it won’t actually be at the wedding … however, it may make an appearance at a pre-wedding festivity or two and will certainly be enjoyed in our condo this winter!

The real winner of the day, was a winter punch packed with apple cider, lemon juice, maple syrup, orange liqueur and light rum.  It definitely looked the part, can be made in advance and was absolutely delicious!  We served it cold, but I would imagine a warmed version of this would be divine.

Don’t forget to check out Art Without Pretense, where Erin shows how Adam and I recipe test (in other words, make a huge mess in our kitchen), take photos (in other words, give each other the silent treatment when we are not getting the shot we want) and blog.

Recipes as seen on Theknot.com

1.0 from 1 reviews

A Wedding: Signature Cocktails
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Here are a couple of great cocktails for any wedding. How to make honey Syrup: In a small saucepan add equal parts of honey and water, bring to a simmer until the honey has melted into the water then allow to cool.
Created By:
Yield: 1
You Will Need
Pear Vanilla Sparkler
  • 1/4 of a ripe pear, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 oz. honey syrup
  • 1/4 oz. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 oz. Navan (vanilla cognac)
  • 1/2 oz. Light Rum
  • 2 oz. Champagne
Winter Rum Punch
  • 2 parts light rum
  • 1 part apple cider
  • 1 part Orange liqueur (Benedictine was also suggested, this would present a sweet and spicy flavor instead of orange)
  • 1/2 part maple syrup
  • 1/2 part fresh lemon juice
Directions
Pear Vanilla Sparkler
  1. In the bottom of a shaker, muddle the pear in the honey syrup and lemon juice. Add the Navan, rum and stir briefly with ice. Strain into a chilled champagne flute or martini glass and finish with Champagne. Garnish with a couple slices of pear.
Winter Rum Punch
  1. Combine ingredients in a shaker (or punch bowl if preparing a large batch). Add ice when ready to serve, and stir well then pour into high ball or wine glasses. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.
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About the Author

Joanne

I'm Joanne Gallagher and alongside my husband, Adam, I develop, test and share favorite recipes from our kitchen. I'm completely in love with food and you'll most likely find me covered in flour, chocolate or both.

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22 Comments

1 Erin July 19, 2010 at 9:28 am

The pictures look great guys! Makes me want to brew up a batch of the pear sparklers right now…but I’ll wait for a more acceptable drinking time!

Reply

2 Kristen July 20, 2010 at 8:55 am

Wow – that does sound like a great job for a maid of honor. Pretty rough :)
I can’t wait to try these!

Reply

3 Peter July 20, 2010 at 10:10 am

Wow that’s quite a difference between Benedictine and orange liqueur in the punch. Did you try both versions because they aren’t interchangable at all. Drinks sound great though.

Reply

4 inspiredtaste July 20, 2010 at 3:37 pm

Hi Peter,

We actually only tried this with orange liqueur, not Benedictine. This recipe was found on theknot.com by my friend (she is the one getting married).

You have a great point, they really are not similar in flavor – our only thought is that they were assuming by “orange liqueur” one would use Grand Marnier, which has a cognac base, Benedictine also has a cognac base. Even so, they are still, as you pointed out, very different flavors. Benedictine is sweet, herb-y and spicy in flavor with notes of vanilla, cardamom, cloves and nutmeg.

Considering that the recipe was for a winter cocktail, we actually believe both would work very well, but generate slightly different tastes in the end, but we have not tried the recipe with Benedictine yet, so we will have to update you when we do :)

Thanks for the comment!

Reply

5 Sophia July 20, 2010 at 10:51 am

Wow, great job here. Awesome picture too! You should really consider submitting this to Recipe4Living’s Summertime Sipper Contest! It looks delicious!

Reply

6 Trudy ~ veggie num num July 20, 2010 at 8:26 pm

Heading out on a winter weekend escape with friends soon and the Rum punch sounds absolutely perfect for an evening by the fire.. thank you for sharing.

Reply

7 inspiredtaste July 21, 2010 at 8:03 am

Trudy: Wow, we are right in the middle of summer here, a cool winter day with a fireplace sounds lovely right about now :)

Enjoy that punch … if you get a chance, try it warmed.

Thanks!

Reply

8 Stay-At-Home-Chef November 26, 2010 at 1:10 pm

Wow these cocktails look amazing! Will be whipping up a batch of each this weekend to enjoy with friends…thanks for sharing the recipes.

Reply

9 Jennifer Marston Cox December 5, 2010 at 1:13 am

I attended this wedding and this punch was the best! I can not wait to re-create at home! Thanks!

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10 inspiredtaste December 9, 2010 at 1:01 pm

Thanks Jennifer!

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11 Melissa November 22, 2013 at 4:39 pm

What is honey syrup? Can I just substitute homey?

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12 Adam November 25, 2013 at 3:40 pm

Here’s how to make honey syrup (it is basically simple syrup made with honey instead of sugar). In a small saucepan add equal parts of honey and water, bring to a simmer until the honey has melted into the water then allow to cool. If you’d prefer, try just using honey — you might want to add a little then taste before adding more.

Reply

13 acutegrl December 15, 2013 at 7:28 pm

Yuck. I’m not sure how the winter rum punch has any positive reviews. I made this for a large holiday party at my home and not one person liked it. It tastes like a drunk waffle.

Reply

14 Joanne December 16, 2013 at 12:34 pm

Sorry no one liked it!

Reply

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