Normally we don’t go for vodka drinks around here anymore. (We’re into amaro lately.) But this drink, which we found originally in Bon Appetit, looked so refreshing (and seasonal!) that I couldn’t pass it up.
When I went to pour my St. Germain elderflower liqueur into the pitcher, however, it looked a little off. Golden. OK: Rusty. And it smelled like bad sherry. It had turned! Oh no! What to do? I poked around the back of the liquor cabinet and found something called liquor de lavande.
It was a brilliant substitute; I just added simple syrup to the drink to make up for the lack of syrup that the elderflower would have brought. The drink would be equally as good with creme de violette.
Recipe, after the jump.
Blueberry Smash Highballs
2 lemons, sliced into rounds
2 limes, sliced into rounds
1 cup fresh blueberries
1/2 cup (loosely packed) fresh mint leaves plus sprigs for garnish
1 1/2 cups vodka
1/2 cup simple syrup
1/4 cup liqueur de lavande*
Using a muddler or the handle of a wooden spoon, coarsely mash lemon and lime slices, blueberries and mint leaves in a large pitcher. Stir in vodka, simple syrup, liqueur de lavande, and 2 cups of ice cubes.
Serve over ice in low-ball glasses with a lemon round, a lime round, a scattering of blueberries and a sprig of fresh mint.
*Most liquor stores can order liqueur de lavande, a liqueur from Provence (I use the brand La Mas de Coralie). Or substitute creme de violette, a liqueur made from violets. Or use 3/4 cup St. Germain elderflower liqueur and omit the simple syrup.