Cocktails with Wolf & Grouse
For the second year in a row, I didn’t really go anywhere this summer. It was one of those things… because of COVID, it was a challenge to go anywhere on a plane. We were being encouraged to stay home. As a result, anything “local” (Okanagan, Vancouver Island, the Sunshine Coast) booked up super quick, so there weren’t many options for local getaways.
I was lucky enough to score a few nights in Tofino for Michael and I, and he spent time with his grandparents in Qualicum, while I spent time with friends in Nanaimo and Victoria.
View this post on Instagram
One place I always make sure to stop at every time I drive the Malahat is Blue Grouse Estate Winery. If you’ve never been, be sure to take time to stop the next time you drive by! It’s so beautiful and peaceful there.
I’ve long been a fan of the label since I met owner Bailey a few years back at a tasting at Marquise Wine Cellars. I love supporting anything local, and a local wine label gets a double thumbs-up.
While I was at the winery, I picked up a bottle of their latest venture, Wolf & Grouse. It’s a bit different. It’s an apertif.
Primarily, Blue Grouse makes wines, but this is designed to be lower in alcohol (6.5%) to be served to family and friends who have to drive, but maybe still want to partake in the celebration.
An apertif is meant to be enjoyed before the meal, as its purpose is to whet your appetite, so to speak, to open it up. Popular apertifs are Campari and Aperol (Aperol Spritz FTW!), and they are often on the bitter side, rather than sweet.
I’ve been taste-testing my Wolf and Grouse since I got it; I’ve had it in a Spritz (three parts sparkling wine like Prosecco, two parts Wolf and Grouse and 1 part bubbly water like tonic or club soda), and the other night, in celebration of Negroni Week, I made a Boulevardier with it.
You could also try it really simply with tonic, or in a sour.
Today’s recipe is one that comes from Wolf & Grouse (I didn’t make this one up). Salut!
- Cocktail Shaker
- 2 oz Wolf & Grouse (or other apertif)
- 2 oz gin
- 6 drops cranberry juice
- 6 ice cubes
- 1 sprig thyme
- Drop the ice cubes into the cocktail shaker.
- Pour Wolf & Grouse into the cocktail shaker, then top with the gin and drops of cranberry juice.
- Shake until the outside of the cocktail shaker is frosted.
- Strain into a chilled coupe glass and garnish with they thyme sprig.