When I was visiting my family recently I told my mom I’d be in charge of the signature cocktail for a get-together she was hosting. The proximity to Cinco de Mayo left me no choice, I had to go with a margarita. My mom agreed, but noted that her friends may not be as adept at holding their tequila as I am (I’ll take that as a compliment!) so I decided to experiment with a sangrita recipe — margarita inspired with a sangria flair. I made this in a big batch so it was easy for guests to self-serve. Start with a clear pitcher and 4 limes quartered and squeezed in the bottom. Next I poured in about 2 cups of ice, 2-3 tbsp of sugar, 1 cup of tequila (or more, depending on taste!), and 2 bottles of Izze Sparkling Clementine. Stir it all up and let it sit in the fridge for about 20 minutes to chill and combine the flavors. When you’re ready to serve, pour a glass halfway full of the margarita mixture and top with a light, crisp rosé (try a sparkling rosé too!). A few festive straws are all you need to finish off the drink (PS: how cute is my mom’s Target bar cart?), and luckily between the two of us we have a life-time supply of those!
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This year I’m serving up a punch for my signature cocktail: Champagne Clementine Fizz. It’s a little pink, and a little bubbly, and with the cute bows I found at the craft store to tie on my champagne glasses — it’s even a little glittery! Want to whip up a batch for yourself? In a large drink dispenser, combine two bottles of champagne — feel free to use the cheap stuff, I promise no one will know, one bottle of sparkling clementine soda (you can find this at Trader Joe’s) and a few ounces of St Germain or another elderflower liquor to taste. Mix it together and throw in some frozen cranberries for color and to keep the drink cool. Cheers to 2013!

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