Tis the season for food-pairings & bubbly!
So, we all know that the gustatory delight of the year is happening this Thursday. While I’m always prodded for awesome red wines for Thanksgiving (psssh, people and their ridiculous aversion to white wine!) it should also be noted that sparkling wine is always appropriate for food-based parties.
My friends at Freixenet– one of the highest quality sparkling wines that is also SUPER affordable– sent over some ideas for Thanksgiving cocktails that will make excellent use of TWO of their delicious cava blends.
Isn’t it stunning?
In a flute or coupé, pour three ounces of cherry juice. Top with Freixenet’s SWEET Cuvée Cava– it has a bit more sugar than the usual Brut to offset the tartness of the cherries. The juice is heavier than the cava, so it will blend and suspend nicely in a glass. Garnish with three cherries, and toast to a delicious meal.
If you’re looking for something with more traditional fall flavors, try the Apple Cider Cava-tail: Pour equal amounts of Freixenet Cava and apple cider into a small glass. Top with pomegranate seeds or cranberries, a sprig of rosemary!
Freixenet also has an awesome database of cava-based cocktail ideas on their website.
Looking for something a bit more fun? Try my Cava + Hibiscus Jell-o Shots. Not the most traditional of Thanksgiving Cocktails, but definitely worth trying:
- 10 ounces of Freixenet Cordon Negro Brut
- 4 packets of gelatin (one whole box of Knox!)
- 1/2 cup Hibiscus syrup
- 1/2 cup vodka
- This is easily the most important step of the entire recipe: CHILL YOUR BOTTLE OF SPARKLING WINE. Well. I mean, at least three or four hours in the fridge. This has nothing to do with the gelatin setting properly, and has everything to do with you not getting covered in an exploding bottle of wine when you open it. Trust a girl.
- Once your bottle is well chilled, open it carefully. Measure out 10 ounces of sparkling wine and add to a saucepan. Dust the top of the wine with three packets of gelatin. Let sit for 2-3 minutes, or until gelatin makes a skin on top of the wine.
- On low heat, stir the gelatin into the wine until fully dissolved– i.e., no clumpies. Pour your new gelatin mixture into a square container (I used a small Pyrex dish). Let set for about an hour in the fridge.
- Next, measure out 1/2 cup of hibiscus syrup (I found Wild Hibiscus in the Hispanic foods section of my grocery store, which comes with hibiscus flowers floating it it. It’s awesome. I’ll use the flowers for something else), and 1/2 cup of vodka. Add to your saucepan and sprinkle your remaining packet of gelatin on top. Wait two minutes, then on super low heat, mix the gelatin in until blended. Do not stand over the pan, unless you want a nose full of hot vodka to the face. (You live, you learn, kids.)
- Let the mixture cool slightly, then slowly pour the hibiscus blend on top of your semi-set Cava Jello. Let set for another 4-6 hours, or overnight. Cut into squares, and serve! If the jelly sticks to your container, put it in a warm water bath until the edges melt a bit, then you can pop out your cubes with a rubber spatula.