As spring edges into summer and the temperature starts to heat up, it’s time for my dog Kiki and I to start sharing our favorite activity: porch sitting. My dog, a yellow lab, is one smart cookie, too – she always knows exactly when I’m headed out there. As soon as she hears me crack open a beer, she makes a beeline for the door with her tail wagging a mile a minute. Out front, with the scent of freshly cut grass, the birds singing, an occasional bumblebee floating by to distract her – both Kiki and I are in seventh heaven. What could be better? Well, how about kicking up that brew a notch by making it into a cocktail? Refreshing, but not as heavy and alcoholic as spirit-based beverages, a beer cocktail is definitely worth looking into, even if you don’t think you love beer.
Here’s one that I enjoyed recently. I call it an Orange Moon because I combined orange juice with a Blue Moon Belgian White beer, but you could use an American-style lager or pale ale. For the kick, I went for Comb 9 Gin, locally made by Still the One Distillery in Port Chester. They say theirs is the only gin in the world distilled from honey, and it has citrus notes that are perfect for this drink. I grabbed a few columbine flowers as a garnish. They’re edible, but mostly I just enjoy their vanilla aroma, and they’re pretty, too. An orange slice would make a less exotic but perfectly fine garnish.
2 oz. orange juice
1 oz. gin
Blue Moon Belgian White beer
Combine the orange juice and gin in a tall glass. Fill with ice and top off with the beer of your choice. Garnish with edible flowers or an orange slice and head for the porch.