Cocktails that are good for you? Oxymoron? Not in this case. I have three killer (in my opinion) cocktail recipes coming your way today. Each recipe is made with fresh vibrant ingredients thanks to Vim Vitae.
Vim Vitae, formally know as Vim + Vigor, is an organic, raw, cold-pressed juice company based out of Dallas, but can be found all over Texas, Oklahoma City, and Little Rock. Vim Vitae's mission is to feel amazing about yourself and your choices, every single day. With delicious and nutritious juices, they make it easy to incorporate healthy choices into your day. Their line of juices ranges in flavors and products, all developed by nutrition experts and food lovers.
I've been a Vim Vitae fan from the early days. Fun fact, the founders Annie & Liz are cousins originally from Oklahoma City. Annie's dad and my dad were fraternity brothers and her dad was also my landlord my senior year of college. Home Sweet Lahoma! Annie and Liz also lived in that house while they were in college.
It's fun to have seen them grow and evolve while continuing to develop new products. From cold-press juices, adding in exotic flavors, savory soups and their newest line of limeades. V V's new limeades are just perfect. They are exactly what I want to grab for in the afternoon when water won't make the cut. I have no problem downing one knowing they are made with few and real ingredients. Things like ginger, basil, agave, acai berry, cardamom and more.
Despite them being my afternoon pick me up, today we are talking happy hour. Ramping up the deliciousness of limeades by turning them into cocktails. Vim Vitae's limeades come in five flavors. Since I couldn't pick just one, I chose three, creating a Lavender Cardamom Gin Lemonade, Basil Agave Mint Mojito and Hibiscus Berry Vodka Smash. I can't wait to sip on these drinks all spring and summer long.
First up is the Lavender Cardamom Gin Lemonade. Simply inspired by the colored label I knew I wanted to add lavender. Lemon, gin, and lavender simple syrup get shaken with gin and garnished with a lavender sugar rim. Disclosure I hate gin. But in this cocktail, I love gin.
Lavender & Cardamom Gin Lemonade
1 cup Vim Vitae Cardamom Limeade
1.5 oz or 3 Tbsp. lavender simple syrup (recipe to follow below)*
2 shots or 3 oz gin
lavender sugar for garnish*
*Using a tablespoon of lavender and two tablespoons of sugar, blitz in a single serving blender or crush the lavender buds into the sugar using a mortar and pestle or end of a wooden spoon. Spread sugar in a thin layer on a plate. Run a lemon wedge along the edge of your martini glasses. Dip into the sugar and set aside.
In a cocktail shaker, combine Cardamom Limeade, simple syrup, gin, squeeze of lemon and a big handful of ice. Shake until combined then pour into martini glasses. Sprinkle a little lavender sugar into the glass and enjoy!
Lavender Simple Syrup:
Combine 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup water and 1/2 tablespoon lavender buds in a sauce pan over medium-low heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Strain out the lavender buds then place in a mason jar and cool in the refrigerator.
Mojitos are my favorite cocktail. When I tried the Basil Agave limeade I knew it would be turning into a mojito!
Basil Agave Mint Mojito
1 cup Vim Vitae Basil Agave Limeade
6-8 large leaves of basil and mint
2 shots or 3 oz white rum
sparkling water or club soda
Tear your basil and mint up and divide evenly amongst 2 glasses. To get the most flavor from your basil leaves, one leaf at a time, place in the palm of your hand then smash with your other hand, then proceed to tear up. Cut your lime into fourths. Squeeze 1/4 lime into each glass with the mint and basil. Using a muddler or the end of a wooden spoon, muddle the herbs and lime juice together. Pour 1 shot of rum and 1/2 cup Basil Agave Limeade into each glass. Fill with ice and top with sparkling water. Stir to combine. Garnish with a basil leaf and lime wedge.
This last drink is so easy and even easier to drink...oops! I used the Hibiscus Flower Limeade combined with mixed berries. The hibiscus adds a suspicious taste to the drink that you'll love but wouldn't guess if you didn't know what it was.
Berry Vodka Smash
1 cup Vim Vitae Hibiscus Flower Limeade
1/4 cup mixed berries (I used a package of frozen berries I let thaw out)
2 shots or 3 oz vodka
1 oz or 2 Tbsp. lemon juice
sparkling water or club soda
Divide mixed berries among two glasses. I used raspberries, blackberries and strawberries. Using a muddler or end of a wooden spoon smash the berries together in the bottom of the glass. Add a shot, 1/2 cup Hibiscus Flower Limeade, and 1 tbsp. lemon juice to each glass. Fill the glasses with ice and top with sparkling water. Stir to combine. Garnish with a few berries and lemon wheel.
*All photos by KGC Photography