Elderflower Gin Fizz

Elderflower Gin Fizz | The ELL Blog

Elderflower Gin Fizz | The ELL Blog

Elderflower Gin Fizz | The ELL Blog

Elderflower Gin Fizz | The ELL Blog

Elderflower Gin Fizz | The ELL Blog
Elderflower Gin Fizz | The ELL Blog

Elderflower Gin Fizz | The ELL Blog

Okay, before I get to the Elderflower Gin Fizz recipe,  let me first start off by talking about how darling this bottle of gin is. I mean, the label has flowers and cacti, plus it’s called “Sunday Gin.” What’s not to love?! This is definitely my favorite gin bottle yet. The fact that it comes from You & Yours Distilling Co. is pretty cool too, since I love using local spirits (and by ‘local’ I mean it’s literally downstairs in our apartment building). If you’re in San Diego and still haven’t stopped by the distillery for a cocktail, go now!

Anyways, back to the recipe.  It’s light, floral, and has a great effervescence that comes from the La Croix grapefruit water. Side note — is anyone else obsessed with La Croix, too? It’s become my favorite thing to have around the house lately. They have so many flavors, which also makes it a perfect addition to any cocktail in need of some bubbly! Add some flowers on top, and you’re set.  I was looking for some dainty flowers for this cocktail in particular, and was so happy to find a bouquet of chamomile at Trader Joe’s. They look like miniature daisies and may have just become my new favorite flower.

Elderflower gin fizz (for 2)

4 oz. You & Yours Distilling Co. Gin

2 oz. St-Germain

12 oz. La Croix Sparkling Grapefruit

Lime

Add gin and St-Germain into an ice-filled shaker. Shake for at least 20 seconds, and strain into two glasses filled with ice. Top with grapefruit sparkling water and a squeeze of lime. Cheers!

Note: I love using the extra large Peak Ice Works cubes for cocktails like this, so the ice doesn’t melt as fast.

5 San Diego Happy Hours to Try in April

The next monthly installment of San Diego happy hours is here!  This month, I’ve included one of our all time favorites, as well as some other great go-tos throughout the city. Get ready to try out oysters on Adams Ave, Moscow Mules downtown, and margs in Liberty Station!

1. FIRESIDE

5 San Diego Happy Hours to Try in April - Fireside | The ELL Blog

This outdoor dining concept from the Patio Group is a perfect spot for an afternoon cocktail at Liberty Station. Southwestern accents are sprinkled throughout the patios — including cowhide cocktail tables! — and their back patio bar is housed within a shipping container. Six cocktails are on happy hour, including a yummy margarita and the “Bees Knees Please,” a gin + honey cocktail. Their food offerings are extensive as well, with flatbreads, salads and appetizers all included on happy hour (make sure to try the cornbread). Since Fireside is owned by the Patio Group, which is a very dog friendly restaurant group, pups are always welcome, too! Last time we were here, the server brought Aspen some salmon skin as a treat and she was in heaven. Happy hour runs 3-6pm Tuesday through Sunday, and all day on Mondays.

2. Jayne’s Gastropub

5 San Diego Happy Hours to Try in April - Jayne's Gastropub | The ELL Blog

Located on the northern side of 30th Street, Jayne’s Gastropub offers British fare in a charming white-washed spot. While their happy hour is a little higher priced than most ($8 for drinks and appetizers), the spot is worth a stop if you’re looking for something a little different in North Park.  The bright space and honeycomb tiled floors are a photo dream, plus they have a darling back garden patio that’s completely hidden from the street. Happy hour here runs Tuesday through Sunday from 3-6pm.

3. Lion’s Share

5 San Diego Happy Hours to Try in April - Lion's Share | The ELL Blog

Lion’s Share is one of our all time favorite San Diego happy hours. Located downtown off Kettner Street, the intimate bar + restaurant has an eclectic pub vibe, with dim lighting and animal oil paintings adorning the walls. Happy hour, which runs everyday from 4-6pm, includes a long list of craft cocktails for only $6 as well as appetizers from $4-$8. The Moscow Mule made with fresh ginger is my absolute fav, and their $4 truffle fries are hard to beat. If you’re wanting a little more substance, they also offer a burger + beer special for just $10.

4. Half Door Brewing Co.

5 San Diego Happy Hours to Try in April - Half Door | The ELL Blog

Looking for a spot to grab a beer before heading to Petco Park? Half Door is located just a block from the stadium – plus you can even see into the park from their rooftop balcony! The Irish style brew pub is located within a historic white house,  which gives the spot even more charm. Head inside to the first floor and sit at the bar, where they’ll pour their house brewed beers from doorknob tap handles. During happy hour, which goes Monday – Friday from 4-6pm, house beers are $5 and specialty cocktails are $6. They also have a selection of bites on the happy hour menu as well, such as fried goat cheese and ahi tuna tacos.

5. Beerfish

5 San Diego Happy Hours to Try in April - Beerfish | The ELL Blog

Beerfish offers a fun, nautical themed dining experience on Adams Street. Their outdoor patio is adorned with buoys, market lights, and bench seating, while inside is vibrantly complete with mapped wallpaper and a fresh oyster bar. Stop in Monday through Friday from 3-6pm and receive $2 off beers and wine, and oysters for just a dollar. Can’t go wrong with a glass of rosé and seafood outdoors.

Hope you enjoyed this month’s list of San Diego happy hours — come back in May for five new ones that are sure to bring some inspiration to your afternoon plans!

Tropical Guava Rum Punch

Tropical Guava Rum Punch | The ELL Blog

Tropical Guava Rum Punch | The ELL Blog

Tropical Guava Rum Punch | The ELL Blog

Tropical Guava Rum Punch | The ELL Blog

Tropical Guava Rum Punch | The ELL Blog

With festival season kicking off this weekend, summer feels closer than ever. Pool parties, barbecues, picnics, and long days… I can feel it coming! (okay, so springtime in San Diego is practically summer weather anyways, which means bring on the outdoor festivities!) Now for some honesty.. I completely thought April 14th was National Rum Day — I may or may not have seen it listed somewhere incorrectly —  and I was super stoked to come up with a rum inspired cocktail! Instead, I found out the holiday isn’t until August (duh), but I’m not complaining because this gave me an excuse to bring some summer flavors to spring. Lesson of the week: double check online facts before telling everyone it’s a national holiday.

In better news, this tropical guava rum punch tastes like liquid Hawaiian sunshine. Guava, pineapple, coconut.. mmm what’s not to love. Kind of like a tropical unicorn in a glass. That’s a thing, right? I’m also a big fan of using craft spirits in my cocktails, and this local rum from Malahat Spirits Co. is perfect for this punch.

Also, how cute are these stir sticks from The Roc Shop?!  Nic’s line of laser-cut party ware has always been my favorite, since she has a ton of fun, cheeky designs that can be made in virtually any pretty color you want! I thought these peachy geometric shapes were perfect for spring + summer cocktails. Side note — The Roc Shop just launched a brand new line of rad feminist inspired goodies TODAY, so hurry over to her Etsy shop and check it out!

Tropical Guava Rum Punch (for 2)

4 oz. Guava nectar

1 oz. Cream of coconut

3 oz. Pineapple juice

Juice from 1 lime

3oz. White rum

Place guava nectar, cream of coconut, pineapple juice, lime juice, and rum into a shaker with ice. Shake well to combine, and strain into glasses filled with ice. Garnish with stir stick and enjoy!

Note: If you like your drinks with a bit of bubbly (like me!), you can top this off with some club soda.

Best San Diego Taco Tuesday Spots

Tuesday has recently become one of my favorite days of the week since it’s the perfect excuse to have tacos + margs on a weeknight. I’m always up for an reason to have some fun on a day other than Friday or Saturday!  If you’re like me and looking for a spot to get some yummy Mexican fare at a great price, I’ve brought together six of my favorite San Diego Taco Tuesday spots for you to try out.

Bracero

San Diego Taco Tuesday | Bracero

Situated above Kettner Blvd in Little Italy, this authentic Mexican cocina serves up some of San Diego’s most sophisticated tacos. Their menu of unique taco selections include Beef Tounge Confit, Cauliflower Tortita, and Mexiterranean Abodaba which are $3.50 a piece everyday from 3-6pm. Their speciality cocktail menu is equally as intriguing with fresh takes on classics like a hibiscus sherry Paloma, and are $9.50 at happy hour.

El Camino

San Diego Taco Tuesday | El Camino

Upon entering El Camino, you may have the sensation that you’ve stepped foot inside a piñata. This colorful San Diego Taco Tuesday spot, with vibrant murals and bright tissue paper tassels strung from the ceiling, makes taco Tuesday feel like a party. El Camino is also one of the most affordable spots, too, with $2 street tacos and $3 margs, sangria, and Coronas on Tuesdays.

Del Sur

San Diego Taco Tuesday | Del Sur

South Park is full of hidden restaurant gems, and Del Sur is no exception. This colorful Mexican eatery has local neighborhood charm with a spot-on taco + drink menu. Their Tuesday special includes $3 tacos, $5 house made margaritas, and $4 sangrias. If you’re with friends (or feeling thirsty), pitchers of their cocktails are discounted, too.

Cantina MayahueL

San Diego Taco Tuesday | Cantina Mayahuel

Cantina Mayahuel is one of our more recent taco finds, although I wish we’d known about it longer! Located on Adams Street, this small tequila bar feels straight out of Mexico. Everything is prepared in a small kitchen right behind the bar, making the entire drinking and dining experience feel intimate. The cantina specializes in a huge variety of tequilas and mezcals as well, which includes their own house made brand. Margaritas are $5 and tacos are just $3 a piece all day on Tuesdays.

La Puerta

San Diego Taco Tuesday | La Puerta

This downtown spot has long been one of our favorite happy hours in the city with it’s amazing prices and yummy Mexican fare.  Tacos and TJ Dogs are two bucks all night, while all drinks and apps are 50% off from 3-7. Try their cochinita taco with a Whole Lotta Love margarita – you won’t be disappointed!

Puesto

San Diego Taco Tuesday | Puesto

While Puesto may have already made it onto my list for best happy hours in the city, it would be a shame not to include it on a San Diego Taco Tuesday list, too. Their crispy cheese-grilled tacos and “Puesto Perfect” margaritas are always a great way to end a Tuesday! Get there early while their margs are only $6 from 3-5pm, and stay for the $2.50 tacos and $3.50 Modelo cans that run all night.

Watermelon Bloody Mary

Watermelon Bloody Mary Bar

Watermelon Bloody Mary Bar

Watermelon Bloody Mary ingredients

Our/Los Angeles vodka bottle

Our/Los Angeles Vodka bottle and enamel cups

Ingredients for bloody mary bar

Vodka and ingredients for watermelon bloody mary

Watermelon Bloody Mary

Skewer for Watermelon Bloody Mary

Watermelon Bloody Mary overhead

Watermelon Bloody Mary

Watermelon Bloody Mary

Helllllo weekend! With spring officially here, bloody marys seemed like a great way to start off a Saturday. And why not mix it up with a fresh watermelon-tomato mix? The thick, spicy juice is a great compliment to this vodka I received from Our Vodka by Our Los Angeles. The bottle is so darling too, and looks great set out with the bloody mary toppings! Speaking of , aren’t bloody marys best when you get to build them yourself? While traditional toppings include olives and celery, I wanted to try switching it up with some colorful produce to brighten the bar. Some of the ingredients I selected included cubed watermelon, radishes, lemon wedges, yellow tomatoes, yellow chili peppers, basil, homemade pickled red onions, and himalayan sea salt. Hope you enjoy!

Watermelon Bloody Mary

1/2 c. Tomato juice

1/4 c. Watermelon puree*

1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

1/4 -1/2 tsp. Hot sauce (depending on preference)

1/4 tsp. Celery salt

Juice from quarter of a lemon

3 oz. Vodka

Salt + pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients together. Fill two glasses with ice and pour mixture into both. Add toppings of your choice and enjoy!

*Note: To make watermelon puree, place cubes of watermelon in blender and blend until smooth.

 

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