While it’s a bit disappointing that the cocktail culture isn’t as trendy here in the Netherlands, as it is in the U.S., I have been able to discover new and exciting cocktails throughout my travels. My latest cocktail obsession is with Lillet Blanc. Prior to my first taste of the Lillet Vive cocktail at Ketelhuis Eindhoven, I was Lillet-clueless.
What is Lillet?
Lillet is a French aperitif created in the small village of Podensac in Bordeaux. It’s 85% wine and 15% liqueur. Lillet Blanc, smooth and fruity, has a flowery smell and tastes of candied oranges, honey, pine and exotic fruits. You can see why it would make a perfect summer cocktail? And okay, I know that summer is very close to over but I will drink Lillet Vive cocktails until the sun goes down so I can hold on to summer as long as possible. After that, I will start looking for pumpkin beer (does that even exist in Holland? I sure hope so, or else this stint in Europe may not last too long!).
I couldn’t just stop there. Bill recently bought a bottle of Gin and while researching other ways I could drink Lillet Blanc in cocktail form, I came across the Strawberry Lillet Crush from Saveur. Since it was #sundayfunday, what better excuse to keep concocting and drinking? The Strawberry Lillet Crush differs from the Lillet Vive in that the strawberries and mint are muddled with simple syrup to add a sweeter element. The addition of gin balances the sweetness. I took Saveur’s cocktail recipe and made my own small adjustments, below is my rendition.
*Warning the addition of Gin makes the Strawberry Lillet Crush a bit stronger than the Lillet Vive. Both are delicious but consuming both in a short period of time could leave you in the state it left my husband!