Grapefruit moonshine and rosemary sparkler, pending a better name.

Grapefruit Moonshine and Rosemary Sparkler

When you go to a local food festival and end up tasting a really delicious grapefruit-infused moonshine you obviously need to buy yourself a bottle of it to take home…but then the question remains: what to make with it? This was the conundrum I had after picking up a bottle of Belle Isle’s Ruby Red Moonshine at the Emporiyum Baltimore last month, and after poking around the interwebs for about twenty minutes scrolling through a slideshow of grapefruit-forward cocktails, I eventually stumbled on my answer.


Inspired by a cocktail made for Saveur by the women behind the blog This Girl Walks Into a Bar, in essence this turned into a sort of moonshine and herb version of a French 75. The hardest part of this cocktail is making the simple syrup early enough so it has time to cool sufficiently before pouring it into the cocktail shaker; in the past, I’ve actually placed one bowl into a slightly larger one filled with ice to get the job done a little faster. The simple syrup is good for a couple of weeks in the fridge, and frankly, I like it in traditional French 75s with gin as much as I do in this recipe. (There’s also this slightly more complicated drink that I’ve made over the holidays that also plays nicely with rosemary simple syrup, but unlike these it does require a bit more effort to char all of those lemon halves.)

For now I’m calling this a Grapefruit Moonshine and Rosemary Sparkler, but that name may change if I find a suitable American cannon name that can be used instead.

Grapefruit Moonshine and Rosemary Sparkler

makes one cocktail

  • 2 oz ruby red grapefruit moonshine (we like Belle Isle and they didn’t pay us to say that)
  • 1.5 oz rosemary simple syrup (recipe here)
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon (or more to taste)
  • Cava or prosecco to top
  • Rosemary sprig and grapefruit twist, to garnish

In a cocktail shaker filled with ice combine the moonshine, lemon juice, and simple syrup, close, and shake well to combine. Pour into a waiting cocktail glass or coupe, top with cava or prosecco, and garnish with a rosemary sprig and grapefruit peel. Serve immediately.



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