the clover club cocktail | how to make sugared cranberries + your own grenadine

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Have you ever juiced a pomegranate? I hadn’t until about a week ago. I’ll come across some unique, detailed technique from time to time and think, “Now, I’ve got to try that.” I might not even have an end result in mind, but I’ll feel an overwhelming need to learn some obscure and interesting skill that might prove completely unnecessary. I had already purchased a couple of pomegranates, and they were sitting on my kitchen counter, almost staring back at me, probing me with a challenging smirk, as if to say, “I dare you to do something with us.”

The thing is, I hadn’t even purchased a pomegranate until a week ago, let alone seed one. Even the thought of seeding the strange fruit kept me procrastinating the task. I finally gave in. After watching a few videos and reading a couple of how-tos, I accepted the challenge. I’ll admit that purchasing pomegranate juice is a convenient treat, but the bright, potent flavors I got from juicing my own won me over. In this case, learning a particular new skill was totally worth the effort.

After my triumphant, juicing feat, I reckoned that I should do something with all that juice. Sure, I could drink it all up, but I wanted to make something delicious with the pretty, magenta-hued liquid. So, I made those pomegranates proud and whipped up some homemade grenadine and added a little to one of my favorite classic cocktails, the Clover Club.

You’ll pat yourself on the back for this one. 😉

DSC_1943the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks

The Clover Club cocktail is one of dreamy texture, with bright and refreshing acidity, complemented by a subtle, tart sweetness. Traditionally, this classic cocktail, which made its debut in the early 1900s, is comprised of gin, raspberry syrup, lemon juice, and an egg white. I subbed the raspberry syrup with grenadine and added a little dry vermouth to give the drink a bright, floral lift.

The first recipe follows the classic recipe pretty well, but I strayed a little with the second one. Since cranberries are in season, I muddled a few, along with the gin and lemon juice. I balanced out the tartness of the cranberries with some of DRAM Apothecary’s Juniper Rose, a thick, syrup with rosy floral and alpine notes that pairs magically with gin. Either recipe evokes the brighter, refreshing, and citrus-driven aspects of the winter season.

the clover club cocktail | winter remix

  • 2 ounces gin {I used Leopold Bros.}
  • 1/4 ounce dry vermouth {I used La Quintinye Vermouth Royal Blanc}
  • 3/4 ounce spiced grenadine {recipe to follow}
  • 3/4 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 egg white {organic, free-range, and very fresh}
  • sugared cranberries for garnish {recipe to follow}
  1. Fill a mixing tin with the gin, vermouth, grenadine, lemon juice, and egg white. Shake well and hard for 30 seconds. Do this without adding any ice. This is called a “dry shake” and is necessary to produce a rich, frothy, undiluted texture. Don’t be tempted to add ice and skip this important step.
  2. Add ice to the mixing tin and shake vigorously for another 30 seconds.
  3. Strain into a chilled coupe and garnish with sugared cranberries.

the rosy outlook | a juniper rose + cranberry clover club

  1. In a mixing tin, muddle the cranberries well.
  2. Add the gin, Juniper Rose syrup, lemon juice, orange bitters, and egg white to the tin and dry shake hard for 30 seconds.
  3. Add ice to the mixing tin and shake vigorously for another 30 seconds.
  4. Double-strain into a chilled coupe and garnish with sugared cranberries.
  • Double-straining is essential for muddled cocktails, when the goal is a clean and particulate-free cocktail. Simply strain the cocktail using a hawthorn strainer into an intermediate glass and then strain the contents into the chilled coupe, using a julep strainer. This extra step might sound tedious, but the end result is a better texture.

the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks

The classic Clover Club is garnished with raspberries, but I felt that sugared cranberries would make a lovely, festive substitution. I took notes from Love & Olive Oil’s DIY on sugaring cranberries, made a couple of modifications, and they turned out perfectly.

sugared cranberries

  • 6 ounces fresh cranberries {1/2 a typical bag}
  • 1 cup, plus 1/2 cup cane sugar
  • 1 cup water
  1. Wash cranberries and set aside.
  2. In a saucepan, make a simple syrup by bringing 1 cup water and 1 cup of the sugar to a simmer, just long enough to dissolve the sugar.
  3. Pour the simple syrup into a bowl, allow the simple syrup to return to room temperature, and add the cranberries.
  4. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours or overnight.
  5. Using a slotted spoon, gently place the cranberries on a cake cooling rack. I don’t have one, so I used my food dehydrator trays and placed foil underneath to keep it as clean as possible.
  6. Allow the cranberries to dry for about 45 minutes. They should feel slightly sticky to the touch but be free of any liquid remains.
  7. Fill a small bowl with the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar and gently roll cranberries, a few at a time, through the sugar, until all sides are covered.
  8. Set the cranberries on a baking sheet and store at room temperature.
  • Truth be told, I forgot about my cranberries in the fridge, and they hung out there for two days. All was well. As you can see from one of the above photos, I wanted to initially use both cranberries and blackberries for varied color and texture. The blackberries proved themselves too juicy for this recipe, and the dusted sugar dissolved. They were less than photogenic, but they were a tasty treat!!
  • TIP – – – If you’re using the sugared crans for cocktail garnishes, pre-skewer them just after dusting them with sugar. If you wait too long, they will harden, and the sugar will fleck off easily. Store your pre-made garnishes in a bowl, loosely stacked on each other or, preferably, stored side-by-side.

the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks

When I skimmed the pages of Maggie Battista‘s new book, Food Gift Love, her homemade grenadine immediately called my name. I love a good Clover Club, when it’s crafted with homemade grenadine, and you’ve never experienced a more delicious Tequila Sunrise, when you forgo the syrupy, artificially colored crap for the good stuff. Even your Shirley Temples will thank you for taking the extra time to make your own grenadine.

If you didn’t know already, true grenadine is simply pomegranate syrup. I don’t know when the commercially available formula first arrived on the drink scene, but that hot pink, cloyingly sweet stuff doesn’t belong on any bartender’s shelf. Say no to the fake coloring and the heavy dose of high fructose corn syrup and make your own.

For this recipe, which is inspired by Maggie’s recipe, I juiced one pomegranate, which yielded just the right amount of juice, just about one cup. I referenced Tori Avey‘s method on seeding and juicing the tropical fruit, here. I followed her directions for “method two” and juiced the seeds in my Vitamix. Removing the seeds from the fruit was actually quite therapeutic. Pairing the process with a few minutes of Elf and a mug of hot cocoa made the time pass quickly.

And if you don’t want to get down and dirty and seed your own, be sure to purchase 100% pomegranate juice. Any added sugar will affect the flavor profile of this recipe.

the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks

spiced grenadine | a winterized riff

  • 1 cup pomegranate juice, preferably freshly juiced
  • 1 cup cane sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  1. Fill a small saucepan with the pomegranate juice, cane sugar, pomegranate molasses, cinnamon stick, and cloves.
  2. Heat over low heat until the sugar dissolves.
  3. Remove from heat and let the cinnamon and cloves steep for about 10 minutes.
  4. Remove the cinnamon stick and cloves from the mixture and add the lemon juice and almond extract.
  5. Stir, pour into a decorative container, and store in the refrigerator.
  • This grenadine will keep for up to 2 weeks in the fridge.
  • You can optionally add a little pomegranate molasses to boost the color and intensity of the grenadine. I added about an ounce to my finished grenadine.

the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks DSC_2142

If you’re still trying to find the perfect holiday gift for a food-loving friend or family member, I suggest Maggie’s book as a thoughtful option. I actually met Maggie in person, back in October and was over-the-moon impressed with her blog and her online storefront, which features small-batch, unique, homemade gifts and pantry items. It’s so beautifully curated and thoughtfully sourced. When I heard she was releasing a book on food gifts, I had to get myself a copy.

I’m making and gifting some of her delicious grenadine, chocolate hazelnut spread, toasty granola, and herb-infused sea salt this Christmas. That is, if I don’t end up eating it all up, before I send it out! I’ve been know to do that.

the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks

I hope you’re enjoying your Friday evening! I’ll be soaking up the solitude and enjoying yet another Friday night away from the restaurant’s craziness. Is it weird that I’m super stoked to clean up the kitchen, send a few emails, do a little online shopping, and paint my nails for once?

For those of you celebrating Hanukkah, I wish you the happiest! And for those of you scrambling to get those last-minute Christmas gifts, I wish you good luck. I’m giggling at what one of my regulars told me last night: he and his best friend share a tradition, where they go out for a sushi lunch on the day before Christmas, order up some Champagne to catch a little buzz, and hit the stores running. He argued that shopping drunk is the best way to go – no worries about the cost, no second-guessing the gifts, and no stress about the crowds.

I’m shaking my head because if I did that, I’d rack up a serious bill that I couldn’t afford, and my regrets on my purchases would far outweigh the hangover the next day. I’ll stick to a sober, online-purchasing experience, myself!



resources for this post

the clover club cocktail | how to make your own grenadine | holly & flora #cocktails #drinks

  1. As always inspiring and lovely!

    • Edie, thanks so much! I’m LOVING what you’re doing with your watercolors and the development of the force, which has become, Super Pig. You completely rock and are such an inspiration to me. Big hugs your way!

  2. Julia says:

    Jayme, you are such an inspired and hard worker. There’s so much attention to detail and beauty here, as always. I really love those sugared cranberries–so pretty.

    • Thanks, Julia! I am seriously on a mission to find some quinces. Quince apple pie sounds divine. Where does one even find quinces here in CO? I never see them! I’m obsessed… Those sugared cranberries require some patience, but the time taken is worth the wait. They are little jewels of sweet and sour!

  3. Jayme have you done a post in regards to keeping a drink pantry stocked? I would love to know you think are the essentials. (Frankly so I can stock up)

  4. […] Clover Club Cocktail–I wanna drink dat right meow. […]

  5. I am just noticing your site redesign! I am IN LOVE!! Also, your photography lately has been stunning. Keep up whatever you’re doing cause you’re working it girl. xx

    • Sherrie! So good to see you here! Thanks a HEAP for your encouragement. That means so much! And happy to hear you like the reboot! 😉 I keep waiting to perfect a hand-lettered logo, and that just isn’t happening right now, so I went for a fun font until that happens. Big hugs to you, as you enjoy the holiday season. I think of you often and trust you’re feeling better every day. PS, I’m almost finished with those five pieces I needed to do this week. I might be up most of the evening, but at least I’ll meet my deadline! HA!

  6. Good God that looks amazing. Your photography is just stunning. Also–love your new logo and color scheme. Keep up the great work!

  7. Your pictures are so amazing ! Love your blog 🙂

  8. […] Holly and Flora adds some spices to her grenadine and it sounds incredible. Definitely give this variation a whirl, […]

  9. […] cranberries (use this great recipe via Holly & Flora!) and rosemary for […]

  10. […] Are you a fan of egg white-based cocktails? If you haven’t tried making one before, give a Clover Club or a Persimmon Gingersnap Flip or a Meyer Lemon Bourbon Fizz a go. The texture is sublime, and the […]

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