New Year’s Eve celebrations conjure up images of decadence. There is usually a lot of gold, glitter, rich foods, wistful kisses and, of course, Champagne. Cannabis is rarely depicted in this debaucherous mix, but we all know it’s there. So how do you keep your canna consumption classy this New Year’s? The Champagne Cocktail, Sonoma Style.
A Bitter Year
The Champagne Cocktail is a simple cocktail to make, but in reality, its flavors are anything but simple. It’s just three components: sugar, bitters and Champagne. Ok, four: garnish with a lemon twist. There is no shaking or mixing involved. You simply douse a sugar cube with bitters, plop it into a flute and top with Champagne. Voila. So how do you make this Sonoma style? With Elyon, of course. Traditionally, the bitters used in the cocktail are Angostura Bitters, a popular bitters brand known for its aromatic style. With our Sonoma style twist, we’re swapping out the Angostura for some homemade cannabitters. Cannabis and bitters actually have a lot in common. Like cannabis, bitters have a long history in traditional medicine and were once created as tonics for the medicine cabinet instead of the bar cart. Bitters are aptly named for the bitter herbs and roots that make up these elixirs. To make them palatable they are also composed of flavoring agents. Most of the world’s popular bitters keep their recipes under lock and key. But we’re proud to share our recipe. Adapted from Brad Thomas Parson’s House Bitters recipe, we put our own twist on the bitter ingredients to complement the flavors and effects of cannabis.
Cannabitters: The Elyon Elixir
- ¼ cup dried cherries
- 2 tbsp dried orange peel
- 1 vanilla bean
- 5 cardamom pods, cracked
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 star anise
- ¼ tsp cloves
- ¼ gentian root
- ¼ tsp orris root
- ¼ tsp horehound
- ¼ tsp angelica root
- ¼ tsp dandelion leaf
- 7 grams Elyon Chemdawg, decarboxylated
- 2 cups high-proof rye
- 1 cup water
- 2 tbsp simple syrup
Place all but the final three ingredients in a mason jar. Pour in the rye, making sure all ingredients are covered. Store in a cool, dark place for two weeks, shaking the jar once a day. After two weeks, strain the liquid through cheesecloth into a new jar. Cover and set aside. Place the remaining solids in a saucepan with the water and bring to a boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer for ten minutes. Allow to cool and transfer to another mason jar. Again, store in a cool, dark place for one week, shaking the jar each day. After a week, strain the liquids through a cheesecloth and combine with the original rye/liquid mixture. Add the simple syrup, cover and shake to fully incorporate. Allow the mixture to sit for three more days, straining any additional solids or debris out. Transfer to dropper bottles and enjoy!
Cannabitters aren’t quite as simple as the Champagne Cocktail. But don’t let this lengthy process intimidate you. It’s well worth the time and this potent little tonic will continue to get you The Most High for up to a year or longer.
Cause and Effect
When creating our chronic cocktails, we always seek out strains both for their flavor and their effect. Choosing our bitter ingredients was no different. Gentian root is the most bitter of the bitter roots and helps with digestive issues. Besides having an incredible name, horehound is a member of the mint family and is often an ingredient in combating the common cold. Angelica root is known for its musky, herbaceous aroma and not only aids in digestion but also helps fight anxiety. Dandelion leaf is another appetite stimulant and tastes slightly like chicory. And finally, you know we’re a sucker for flowers, so we chose orris root for its violet-scented undertones. So why Chemdawg? First, it has a pungent nose not to be outdone by the other ingredients. It’s aromas of diesel and pine complement the earthy, bitter flavors of the roots. But this is also about effects and you need a strain that will keep you counting down all the way to midnight. Chemdawg is the perfect social strain that will keep you alert but still relaxed until the ball drops. It’s potent and cerebral but sharp enough to keep you focused on what really matters: who to kiss on the cusp of the New Year.
The Champagne Cocktail, Sonoma Style
- 1 sugar cube
- 2-4 dashes Elyon Elixir Chemdawg Cannabitters
- Champagne or sparkling wine
- Garnish: lemon twist
- Douse the sugar cube with cannabitters.
- Transfer to a flute and top with sparkling wine.
- Garnish with a lemon twist.
What Grows Together Goes Together
As this cocktail is done Sonoma style, we recommend forgoing Champagne and buying Sonoma county sparkling wine instead (a few of our favorites include Iron Horse, Gloria Ferrer and Domaine Carneros). This is New Year’s after all so don’t skimp on the good stuff. With such a simple cocktail, the flavors are crucial so do yourself a favor and buy a good bottle. And unless you like your cocktails overly sweet, grab a bottle of brut. Now go on, wet your lips and get ready for that kiss. It’s almost time.
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