Hopefully, now that we are seeing a light at the end of the tunnel with the Coronavirus, we can get back to what we do best – having a good time with the neighbors, our families and special friends. Springtime on the patio or front porch here in Middle Tennessee is one of the main reasons many people choose to live here. We are so fortunate to be able to utilize our outdoor spaces about 9 months out of the year. It’s always nice to gather with friends and have a few drinks and some yummy eats. Being an award-winning mixologist, I always get elected to make the drinks …. and I’m okay with that.
Grilling out, gardening, or just relaxing on the patio always calls for a little libation. I like fresh fruits and herbs for lovely springtime drinks. Fruits and herbs go very well together, and they make every cocktail exciting and stimulating. My favorite thing to do after a day of gardening is to turn on the music, throw some food on the grill, and mix a nice cocktail on my screened in porch. I practically live out there in spring and summer. Warm weather drinks are always fun to make, so many herbs and fruits complement both the booze, and each other perfectly.
This year at Westhaven Golf Club, we will be growing our own mint plants for juleps and other cocktails. I had no idea how many varieties of mint were available until doing a bit of research. Everything from apple to lemon to mojito mint plants are readily found on eBay and on certain gardening websites. We are trying 14 different plants this year. I even found a chocolate mint plant and cannot wait to try it in my Tipsy Squirrel dessert martini.
One of our brand new Westhaven cocktails is the Blues In The Night, made with Stoli blueberry vodka, fresh blueberries and fresh mint leaves. This one will be quite popular on our drink list. It is tall, cool and super refreshing.
I will also be concocting the ever-popular “shrub”. A shrub is made with fruit, herbs and vinegar, which is a natural preservative. Back in the days when refrigeration was non-existent, people would gather up the last of the summer fruits, such as raspberries, blackberries and blueberries and mix them with vinegar and spring water. The vinegar preserves the fruit and makes it last all winter, so folks could enjoy the taste of fresh fruit, and still get the benefits of vitamin C all through the long cold season.
Rampant back in the pioneer days of the New World, Scurvy was a particularly nasty disease. Long ocean voyages were undertaken from Europe to get to the Americas and people went without fresh fruits or veggies for months at a time, leading to loose teeth, unhealthy gums and other issues that go along with vitamin C and D deficiencies. People quickly figured out what was missing from their diets and shrubs provided a way to preserve and transport precious fruit, even long after it had been picked from the trees and vines.
Westhaven will be doing a raspberry orange peel and mint shrub this spring. It is fun and easy to make and goes great with gin or vodka. Also on our spring cocktail list is the Blackberry Boulevardier, a classic drink made with Michter’s 6 year Rye, Aperol, blackberry pulp, old fashioned bitters and sweet vermouth. We are garnishing this one with a big fresh blackberry and giant twisted lemon peel. Absolutely delicious! For the Bourbon lover, this is a springtime cocktail not to be missed.
Join Westhaven Golf Club and enjoy exclusive member benefits and delicious springtime cocktails mixed up by master mixologist Camille Taylor.
Learn more about Westhaven Golf Club at golfwesthaven.com. Westhaven Golf Club is located at 4000 Golf Club Lane | Franklin, Tennessee 37064.