Think of this as the ultimate brunch drink, or a very glamorous sip before going out. Probably not a bad idea to make it for someone you're wooing, either. Chia seeds, which are first suspended in water to create a "gel," enliven this drink with texture and stunning visual appeal. Not that there is anything wrong with the Cosmo to begin with. But who doesn't want a boost of superfood seeds suspended in slow animation in a drink. It's like a boozy, drinkable lava lamp.
The balance of ingredients in this cocktail is important -- too much of any one thing and the chia seeds will either all rise to the top or settle on the bottom. It's not a drink to substitute ingredients or leave something out, but you may have to make slight adjustments to get just the right proportions, depending on the sweetness of your cranberry juice or your bubbly. All we can say is sugars and effervescence lift, so watch out for bubbly that's too sweet -- it won't work.
- 1 1/2 ounce citron vodka (Stolichnaya or Kettle One)
- 1/2 ounce Cointreau
- 11/2 ounces cranberry juice (we use Knudson's Just Cranberry)
- 1 tablespoon chia gel (see below)
- 2 ounces Champagne or Prosecco
- Lemon or orange twist, for garnish
Combine vodka, Cointreau, cranberry, and chia gel in a mixing glass filled with ice. Stir, then strain into a chilled coupe glass or Champagne flute. Top with bubbles. Garnish with a twist of lemon or orange. Serve straight away.
A word on vodka: although we usually steer away from flavored vodkas, Dale DeGroff's Cosmo recipe calls for citron vodka, so we follow suit. After trying a variety of brands, Kettle One Citron and Stolichnaya Citron are stand-outs for us. They're clean and natural tasting, not synthetic.
Chia Gel Instructions
Soak 1 Tablespoon of chia seeds in 1 cup of cold water for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally with a fork. We like to make this in a jar so we can give it a good shake. To read our post on chia seeds, click here.