“We have orange syrup in the fridge and Pamplemousse Liquor on the shelf. Make a cocktail.” Thus spoke my wife.

Today is the end of the year for Cooking by the Book. We had six hands-on cooking events here last week and eight this week. We are wandering upstate to rest, watch the snow, and make Christmas cookies.

Ah, the cocktail. I just grabbed things from the shelf and concocted this lovely mix of citrus and whiskey. It’s a little sweet, but you can adjust that with adding some additional juice from limes or lemons. We drank this after serving 20 people tonight. You can drink it before dinner, too.

And during. This drink will marry happily with a dense, dark steak and some sautéed onions.

Sweet Citrus Whiskey Smash

Yield: 4 good sized cocktails


  • ½ cup orange juice
  • ½ cup orange simple syrup [See recipe below; make in advance]
  • ½ cup whiskey
  • 1/3 cup Pamplemousse Liquor
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • Juice of 1 lemon


Oh, the orange simple syrup? Put one cup of sugar and one cup of water in a saucepan. Put on medium heat and stir to dissolve the sugar. As the mixture comes to low boil, zest two oranges with one of those “stringy” zesters that gives you narrow, short strings. Add the zest to the pan. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, simmer for two minutes, take off the heat, cool to room temperature, then refrigerate.


Source: Brian O’Rourke

Photo Information: Canon T2i, EFS 60mm Macro Lens, F/4.5 for 1/50th second at ISO‑400