Continuing our series of Downton Abbey cocktails, here's a drink inspired by Edith Crawley, the beleaguered middle sister.
Edith is a little hard to pin down. In the first season, she alternates between pitiable (being in love with all her sister's boyfriends) and despicable (writing the letter to the Turkish embassy that kicked off all those scandalous rumors). But in Season 2 Edith started to come into her own. She drove a car; she cared for wounded soldiers; she sympathized with her poor burned 'cousin'. We got to see her sweeter side.
For this most complex of Crawleys, I created a cocktail that's equal parts sour and sweet. The Edith cocktail is sweet sparkling wine, grapefruit, and sloe gin - tart, rich, and deeply British.
1 1/2 ounce ruby red grapefruit juice (fresh-squeezed!)
1/2 ounce sloe gin (see note)
Sweet roseé champagne, chilled, such as Ballatore Spumante Rosso
Add the grapefruit juice and sloe gin to a flute. Top with champagne. Stir and serve.
Note: Do yourself a favor and get the Plymouth sloe gin. If you can't find the Plymouth sloe gin (or another variety made with real sloes), I would recommend leaving it out altogether.
Nancy Mitchell is a secret Edith apologist. You can find more of her recipes on her blog, The Backyard Bartender.