There is something so hopeful about spring. It brings the promise of longer days and evenings warm enough to leave the windows open. As the clocks spring forward and we stroll optimistically towards t-shirt weather, I'm excited about bringing my favorite spring cocktails out of hibernation. Here are two to try.

By Talia Kleinplatz
March 25, 2016

Blood Orange Paloma

There is no shortage of spring cocktails but every year around this time I come back to the Paloma. There's something about tequila and grapefruit that combines to make one of those perfect spring drink. I've found that this classic rarely falls flat with a crowd. It's light enough for easy sipping but spirit-forward enough to please even the pickiest of cocktail lovers.

I often make this much-loved tequila cocktail for gatherings and so decided to try different kinds of citrus to not be the most predictable of friends. My love of blood oranges resulted in this riff on the classic paloma recipe. Swapping out grapefruit for the crimson cousin of the orange is a fun way to switch up the recipe.



Combine lime juice, tequila, blood orange juice and simple syrup in a shaker. Shake over ice. Strain into a chilled glass over fresh ice. Top with blood orange soda and garnish with a dried blood orange wheel.

Spiked Horchata

I tend to eat a lot of tacos as winter turns to spring and my most favorite drink to pair with them is horchata. More often than not, the horchata is long gone before my food even hits the table. I down a good cup of the stuff as fast as I would a glass of chocolate milk. While absolutely delicious served straight up, the first time I tasted this spiced, rice-based drink I felt in my heart that it was meant to be spiked. I tend to use rum for the horchata but you can add an ounce of your favorite spirit to give it an extra kick.


  • 1 cup long grain rice
  • 3 cups of water
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • ⅓ cup of sugar
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 oz spirit of your choice


Combine rice, water, cinnamon sticks and sugar in a bowl. Cover and let soak overnight (preferably for 24 hours). Pour contents of the bowl into a blender and puree until ingredients are combined (about 4 minutes). Pour mixture through a sieve lined with cheesecloth or through a nut milk bag. Add almond milk to taste. Keep in a jar in the fridge. Remember to shake before serving as the contents will separate.

When you are ready to serve, combine four ounces of your horchata with one ounce of your spirit of choice to a shaker. Shake over ice and strain into a chilled glass.


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