Why should only the oenophiles and mojito-swillers have all the fun? If one is not in the mood or mind for a stiff one, options for a smart aperitif are usually pretty glum. Do you really want another Diet Coke? In restaurants and bars you can get some variation on the grapefruit-cranberry-seltzer combo, but that's nothing to write home either.

Hence our affinity for home-concocted mocktails, like this recipe for Rosemary-Mint Cordial. Adventures into new taste frontiers in the drinks department are catnip to all. Look no further than World Famous Ginger Ale for proof. Even those dead set on getting hoot 'n' hollerin' drunk will toss a homemade mocktail down the hatch before settling into a night of leisurely home drinking. (Good luck with those guys….)

Rosemary and mint are felicitous combination for a base of a sparkling libation. There's a good a reason why there's no mint soda on the market. And rosemary doesn't flavor many beverage, though I suppose some wine lovers have detected "notes" of the herb in wines, Lord knows everything else has been detected in tastings.

Anyway, Rosemary Mint Cordial is keeps the flavors of the fresh herbs bright and create a unique meeting place between the sweet and savory. Try 1/2 c . or so mixed with a liter of seltzer. Test taste in advance, as this is pretty heady stuff and too much could be overwhelming.

Raise a glass of Rosemary Mint Cordial mocktail at your next sips and nibbles gathering!

3 1/2 C. apple cider or apple juice
1 c. rosemary needles
1 c. mint leaves
4 c. sugar
1/2 c. white vinegar
1 T. fresh lemon juice

Dissolve the sugar in the cider or juice in a pan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, add the herbs, let simmer for a minute or two, then remove from heat and set aside. Cover and let steep two or three days, refrigerated.

Strain out the herb leaves, add the vinegar and lemon juice and bring back to a boil. Pour into 1/2 c. jars, seal and process in a boiling water bath for five minutes.

Note: you can add a mint leaf and rosemary sprig to the jars (as I have here) to enhance their appearance in the larder, but fish out those garnishes before mixing into drinks.

To serve, start with 1/4 c. of cordial mixed with seltzer and see if that's too your liking. If not, up the cordial-seltzer ratio until you've hit the intensity you desire. 

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Written by on January 5, 2011 under ALL RECIPES, Drinks.

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  • Anna Johnston

    Sounds pretty dam interesting, you just might get me away from my mojito with these…, I’d certainly have one, aaahhh, make that a couple before settling into to some serious mojito action anyways :)

    • Sean

      Or you could just try stirring in what ever you have at hand in the
      clear-goods dept — that’ll give it some kick

  • Charles G Thompson

    Always looking for a new mocktail! Thanks. This sounds lover-lie! Bottoms up.

  • Kyle

    Hi Sean,

    Great recipe. What is the best way to store a batch of this stuff? And how long does it keep?

    Thank you!

    • Dean

      It’ll keep indefinitely in the fridge. You can also preserve it:strain it. Bring it back up to a boil, put into sterilized jelly jars, seal and process in a boiling water bath for 5 minutes. It’ll keep a long long time w/o refrigeration (same as jam or pickles).

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