In a time when snow in the southern states isn't unheard of and power outages have become the norm, the arrival of spring has been suspect. So today when something woke me up and it wasn't a snow plow, a generator, or even a chainsaw, I blinked my eyes open and thought, Sunshine? Birds chirping? Could it really be spring?
Bursting with excitement like a child on Christmas morning, I bound from my bed and threw open the curtains. What was this bright light that seared my eyes? Yes, sunlight and chirping birds!
But hold up. I've been fooled in the past with a bit of sun only to be followed by a flash flood or another nor'easter. I'm just waiting for a sandstorm to complete our disastrous weather circle. So just in case this lovely weather only lasts a week or two, I decided it's the perfect time to raise a glass and ring in spring.
Join me and head outside to your porch, your balcony, your fire escape — or even just throw open a window. It's spring! (...Well, at least for now.) Here's a lively cocktail to toast with. Serve this elderflower champagne sipper alongside a fresh salad of peas and pecorino or asparagus with a lemony vinaigrette, and enjoy tonight's happy hour al fresco.
Elderflower Champagne Cocktail
1 (750-ml) bottle Brut champagne or dry sparkling wine, chilled
1 cup of elderflower liqueur, like St. Germain
1 (12-ounce) can of club soda or seltzer water, chilled
1 cup sliced strawberries
In a large pitcher, combine all of the ingredients and stir. Add ice. Pour into glasses filled with ice and scoop a few strawberries into each glass.
The recipe can be made without the club soda, but cut the elderflower liqueur by 1/4 cup.
The strawberries can be removed completely or you can substitute other fresh berries, sliced peaches, or other fresh fruit.
To make just one cocktail, combine 1 ounce of elderflower liqueur and 3 ounces of chilled Champagne with a few sliced strawberries.