Hosting a little soirée? No need to hire a bartender or run around town searching for all 20 (sometimes strange) ingredients that go into that amazing cocktail you’re trying to recreate. Andrea Hoover, cocktail guru extraordinaire at Cameron Mitchell Restaurants, gave us a hot tip: All you need is the magic of infusions, a pre-made combo of your favorite flavors and a base liquor that you can chill and serve. Here’s how to make ‘em.
Step 1: Decide on a base spirit. What kind of cocktail are you going to make? If it’s a cucumber gimlet for instance, you’ll need to start with gin. Want to go fruity? Try vodka.
Step 2: Pick your ingredients. These are the things that you’ll basically be steeping in your spirit. Fresh produce like cucumbers (peeled and cut) or strawberries (thinly sliced) and basil are great choices.
Step 3: Let the infusion begin. Put your spirit and ingredients in an air-tight container. Shake. And place in a cool, dark place for three to five days.
Step 4: Let’s drink. Once your spirit is properly infused, strain the liquid back into the original bottle and enjoy your cocktail on its own or with a couple extra twists depending on what kind of drink you’re making--perhaps some simple syrup, fresh lime, and of course, ice. Easy.