There is no question that Ojai is a magical and unique place. Creative types of all ages have been flocking out to the hills of California’s lower central coast to get away, create and rejuvenate in this nature filled nest of relaxation. And where there is no shortage of amazing shopping for your home or places to eat an incredible meal….okay and the number of local ceramists is dangerously good too…but what’s even more exciting is what’s growing out in Ojai’s citrus fields…
Pixies! Tangerines…that is.
Yeah yeah, we’re totally farm nerds and get as much enjoyment frolicking between jagged rows of crop as we do waltzing around a perfectly set dinner table. But let it be known that Ojai is gorgeous and worth a detour through the orange dotted fields for a box or two of pixies during the springtime.
On a recent trip to the Valley Of The Moon we celebrated the Pixie Tangerine on plate and in glass…you can get in on this action too each and every month of April as the cities culinary outposts infuse their menus and cocktails with this special fruit.
We were delighted by the naturally seedless and candy sweet citrus and decided there was no reason to stop the flavor fiesta once we got home! Now we are welcoming summer with a bourbon fizz cocktail inspired by drinks prepared by Mixologist Sam Gay of the Ojai Valley Inn.
Our version of this tangerine shrub cocktail is sweet, savory, and a liiiittle too easy to sip on…basically the perfect party drink to turn your backyard into a festive farm-inspired gathering on the easy.
Bourbon & Pixie Tangerine Shrub Fizz Cocktail
- 1 1/2 oz Bourbon
- 1 oz Pixie Tangerine Juice
- 1/2 oz Pixie Tangerine Shrub (instructions below)
- Splash of Fever Tree Soda Water
- Peels of 6 tangerines
- 1 bunch Fresh thyme
- 2 cups Sugar
- 5 oz Apple cider vinegar
Note: Shrub to be done 2 days ahead of time! Combine the tangerine peels, thyme and sugar in a small saucepan and let stand for 48 hours. Add the vinegar and heat over medium-low heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Let stand another 30-45 minutes in warm liquid to pull more flavor from the peels & herbs. Add additional vinegar or sugar to taste. Strain and allow to fully cool before using.
For a single cocktail: Combine first three ingredients and shake over ice, pour into a tall tumbler and top with a splash of soda water and pixel peel garnish. For a larger batch cocktail: Increase the quantities of the first three ingredients by 6 and mix together in a large pitcher using a spoon. Top each individual glass with soda water and a pixie peel.
The sweetness of the Pixie juice combined with the tart and herbaceous shrub syrup is an excellent combination with oaky bourbon. Topped with crisp soda water and a Pixie twist, there might not be a more perfect cocktail to kick off the summer with. Actually, top this elixir off with a little extra carbonated love, because they are dangerously delicious and you’re gonna want more than just one of them!
Can’t find Pixies at your local grocer or farmer’s market? Don’t stress you still have a few weeks left in the season (which ends in June). We suggest mail-ordering a box straight from the Ojai Source over at Friends Farms!