Last fall, for the first time, St-Germain partnered up with Martha Stewart and opened up its Fifth Annual Can-Can Classic cocktail competition to amateurs. Whoopee! J’adore St-Germain!
I did a little experimenting and came up with a sparkling cocktail inspired by the Parisian open air markets, dubbed the Rue Cler (after one of the more famous market streets).
Last month, the grand prize winner of the contest was announced. It wasn’t me, otherwise I’d be $10,000 richer RIGHT NOW. (The other prize option was a trip to Paris, but, uh, I could use the cash more than a trip…which would you take?) I also was not one of the 100 runners-up (and thus have no swanky St-Germain bicycle to pedal either — that was the runner-up prize — not that I’d know what to do with one, nor where we’d store it). Je suis très triste.
The winner looks lovely, a somewhat similar taste profile to the drink I came up with. Although, having tasted neither, I’m actually more intrigued by this runner up, the Lonely Angel No. 35. (Unhelpfully, neither St-Germain nor Martha Stewart [Living Omnimedia…let’s not forget that part!] have updated the contest website and I can’t find a list of the runners-up, which I’d love to see.)
First I was sick (literally), then I was bummed, and then I was sick again, so I’m only now getting around to sharing this recipe. It’s more suited to spring or summery weather than gloomy ol’ February, but I hope you enjoy! (Tip: Obviously, fresh fruits are better, but since they might be difficult to find now, most markets carry containers of pre-cut fruit that include melon chunks.)
Rue Cler Cocktail Recipe
Named after Rue Cler, the famed French market street, this sparkling sipper incorporates the fresh fruit, floral and vegetal flavors of the urban markets of Paris.
- 1½ oz. St. Germain liqueur
- 1 oz. Hendricks gin
- 1½ oz. Champagne
- 5 mint leaves (plus extra for garnish)
- 5 mini cucumber rounds (plus extra for garnish; may substitute 2 regular-size cucumber rounds)
- 1 slice white peach (plus extra for garnish)
- 1 medium chunk honeydew melon
- 1 medium chunk cantaloupe melon
- ¼ oz. fresh-squeezed lemon juice
- Optional: edible flowers for garnish
Muddle fruits, cucumber and mint leaves with lemon juice in a Boston shaker. Add ice, St. Germain and Hendrick’s gin. Shake. Strain into a highball glass over two large spherical ice. Add Champagne. Stir well, garnish with mint, cucumber, peach and edible flowers. If desired, freeze edible flowers into ice spheres before serving.
In retrospect, I probably should have done something more daring and complex — but I felt burned by the last contest I entered, where I think my submission was too complicated for their taste. Oh well. C’est la vie.