GoProvidence.com and the Providence Journal bring you Small Bites: Easy-to-Digest Recipes. For various reasons, ranging from pregnancy to recovery, not everyone who steps foot in a bar wants to drink alcohol. Often, however, the zero-proof options are limited to such basics as Coke and soda water.
Lately, though, there's been a national movement afoot to boost the availability of creative drinks that don't require alcohol. To meet the growing interest locally, Leishla Maldonado, beverage director at Providence's Courtland Club, has been working to develop more options for her guests who want the bar experience without the booze. It's something she can appreciate from a personal perspective, too.
For this week's Small Bites video, Maldonado demonstrates how she uses a lavender infusion to add a floral element to her Wishful Thinking drink. The complex concoction also has rice milk for creaminess and spice from cinnamon syrup. Check out the video and full recipe below.
Wishful Thinking Mocktail
- 1.5 ounces lavender infusion
- 1 ounce rice milk
- .5 ounce cinnamon syrup
- 1 dash Angostura bitters
- LaCroix coconut sparkling water, to top
For the Cinnamon Syrup:
- 12 ounces sugar
- 12 ounces water
- 4 crushed cinnamon sticks
For the Lavender Infusion:
- 510 grams water
- 50 grams dried lavender
- 3 grams lime zest
- 3 cloves
To make the cinnamon syrup, combine the water and cinnamon in a pot, bring to a boil and then remove it from the heat. Let sit for 20 minutes. Bring it back to a medium temperature and stir in the sugar until it dissolves. Cool, strain and refrigerate for future use. Syrup can be stored in a refrigerator for up to two weeks.
To make the lavender infusion, combine all of the infusion ingredients in a large Mason jar. Fill a slow cooker with water, to about half full. Submerge the jar in the slow cooker. The jar should be fully covered with water. Heat to high. Allow to infuse for 2 hours. Cool and strain into a bottle. The infusion can be stored in a refrigerator for up to 3 days.
To make the drink, combine the cinnamon syrup, lavender infusion, rice milk and bitters in a tall highball glass. Add ice and top with approximately 3 ounces of LaCroix, or more if desired. Give it a quick stir to combine.
Note: Cooled lavender tea may be substituted for the infusion.