A Light Conscience for the Heavy Drinker: Summer BBQ Low Carbon Drinking Guide
Well here you are. You’ve rubbed your pasture-raised chickens, you’ve blackened wild catfish, you’ve force-fed cricket burgers to all of the neighbor kids, and you’ve even bowed and arrowed your own venison. In keeping with our Climate Hero’s BBQ recipes, we’re going to join hands and follow some of the same basic principles with our cocktail recipes: Keep it close to home, biodynamic and organic, and clean powered. Now you’re ready to booze as guiltlessly as you’ve gorged.
The Hemingway Daiquiri
First up is Big Papa: The Hemingway Daiquiri. It’s simple, it’s historic, it’s shaken not blended. And there’s one rum distillery that we recommend for this recipe: https://www.montanyarum.com/about. Montanya Rum sources 100% of their power from carbon free sources (predominantly wind power). They compost their organic waste, plant trees to off-set their other emissions related to production, and source their sugar from a U.S. based cooperative that uses cane sugar waste to power its boilers. So turn your nose up at all of those blending whore bartenders and give ‘em this to suck on:
Ingredients for 4 cocktails (enough for friends or an aggressive solo sesh):
- 8 ounces of Montanya Platino 1-Year White Rum
- 3 ounces of fresh lime juice
- 1 ½ ounces maraschino liqueur if you want to maintain tradition. Otherwise, 1 ounce of simple syrup will do the trick (and be much easier for you to make at home with organic cane sugar…it’s just water and sugar)
- Add the rum, maraschino liqueur (or simple syrup) and lime juice into a shaker with ice and shake until chilled…
- Pour into a Coupe and do like Papa do
Strawberry Anejo Mojito
Next up for our budding mixologist, we have a Strawberry Anejo Mojito. Fun to say, funner to drink. Both Cancion Tequila and Tanteo Tequila have partially solar powered distilleries. They also employ a variety of sustainable production and farming practices to reduce water and energy usage and repurpose byproducts into clean water and sugar. Una buena cosa para la comunidad y la tierra! Oh perdoname, my Spanish comes out when I’m tipsy.
Did you know that strawberries are the lowest carbon fruit? Of course you didn’t. Why would you know that? I just found out myself. They’re easy to grow in most climates, and they spread like a hijo de puta once they get going. That means that you can find local options at almost all local fruit stands. They also have a low water footprint compared to other popular fruits. A fruit with low water needs is going to produce less CO2. And mint is basically the same. It’s practically invasive, and it’s not much more sophisticated than a fancy weed – if you’re paying top dollar for it at the store, you’re a total cabron. One seedling in a sunny corner and you’ll never see your kitchen windowsill again. I mean…and you’ll never have to buy mint again.
Ingredients for 4 cocktails:
- 8 ounces of Cancion Anejo 18 Month (or Tanteo Blanco – they don’t produce an Anejo yet)
- 4 ounces of lime juice
- Handful of mint, maybe 1 sprig worth (…like you’re making a mojito),
- 12 to 15 well ripened strawberries
- 2 ounces simple syrup (make this yourself, it’s super easy – sugar and water – and that way you can guarantee organic cane sure
- 16 ounces of club soda
- 2 teaspoons of cane sugar
- Halve the berries into a bowl and sprinkle them with the cane sugar – let these sit for a few minutes until they start to sweat
- Combine into a tumble and muddle the strawberries, mint and simple syrup
- Add ice and tequila, shake
- Serve equally into 4 rocks glasses
- Top with club soda
- Add a strawberry, some mint or even a lime wheel for a garnish
For when yer too sloshed on daiquiris and anita monejos or whatever you callem to make anything com…plicated, I’ve got you with the Lord Simpleton’s also more simplerly known as the G.T.O. You guessed it you clever devil you, it’s a gin, it’s tonic, an andorange. Hey. Hey… Yer cute. I like you.
The nerds over at Solar Spirits (https://www.solarspirits.com/london-dry-gin.html) have the perfect London Dry Gin for your G.T.O. Their production is locally sourced and locally owned by a couple Pacific Northwesterners who have created a super energy efficient distillery that is solar and wind powered. They also source ingredients directly from growers so they can work with farmers who employ sustainable practices. DING DING DING.
The ingredients and the steps for this one couldn’t be more simple, and more refreshing.
Ingredients for 4 drinks:
- 1 ½ cups of Solar Spirits London Dry (that’s 3 ounces per drink so a little boozier than the other drinks so far)
- 16 ounces of tonic water (we recommend Crafted Cocktails organic tonic water – https://craftedcocktails.com/product/organic-tonic-water-12-pack/)
- 2 ounces of orange juice
- 4 wedges of fresh orange
- Lightly muddle the oranges in 4 lowballs and then fill each with ice
- Combine and shake gin and OJ in a tumbler then pour over ice
- Add tonic
Straight Sun Powered Bourbon
Oh boy somebody get a holdame, I’m goin in for the bourbon and I’m gonna say things I really shouldn’t say in front of your guests. But don’t worry, it’s award-winning. It’s solar powered. It’s from Catoctin Creek Distillery (https://catoctincreekdistilling.com/about/solar). Their distillery is nearly 100% powered by an on-site solar electric system, and located in the Loudon Valley of northern Virginia, Catoctin Creek comes from the birthplace of American whiskey.
Suds? Wallop? The Nectar??
I’m not cut off, yer cut off. BEER ME.
If you’re in the mountain west, it’ll be New Belgium for you. I know we’ve all heard of them, but when it comes to sustainability practices they might be the best. Not only do they have a massive solar array at their fort collins brewery, they also purchase wind power that takes them over 100% of their energy needs. Additionally they have aggressive climate goals that put them on track for full carbon neutrality by 3020. I mean 2030. Some good reading on the New Belgium Climate Mission: https://www.newbelgium.com/company/mission/climate/
In the Southeast, my beloved motherland, you have the marvelously outstanding Sweetwater Brewing Company. Not only is their Hotlanta brewery powered by solar, but they’ve been in the conservation game since the very beginning, with a huge focus on preserving wilderness and protecting water quality: https://www.sweetwaterbrew.com/vibe-events/save-our-water/
And for the Mid-atlantic, I’ve got something very esoteric for you. Kernza Pils: a collaboration between Dogfishhead Brewing and Patagonia (you’ve worn their sweatshirts, but have you worn their “Provisions”???). Quick soil science lesson coming at you: tilled soil (just regular basic bitch farming) is one of the greatest sources of carbon emissions. The Kernza grain is a perennial grain, which means no tilling, which means less emission! Perennial grasslands are actually one of the largest carbon sinks in the world. This is exciting! Get excited!! I’m gonna grab your feet now and you’re gonna do a kegstand!!!
We think this perennial grains thing is pretty sweet. Check out more here: https://www.patagoniaprovisions.com/pages/why-beer
Do I Detect a Hint of Grapes?
Who drinks wine at a barbecue. Uggggghh I literally can’t, like I literally can’t even with you are you gonna eat that?
Sauvignon Blanc by Honig is fully solar powered. And! This is really cute! They use sheep as lawn mowers. They also allow pollinator habitats to grow under their solar ground mounts. Close your eyes and picture a flock of sheep scooting up and down a field while butterflies and bees bang out the wildflowers.
For you redheads, might I offer you a glass from Benzinger? It’s the most biodynamic winery in CA (which means probably the US) and 80% of its power comes from solar. Their composted waste is recycled into the vineyards. They use sheep herds for weed control, and they’ve set up a little predator palace for pest control. No herbicides or pesticides!
Well that’s a wrap. You’ve got all the info you need to basically save the world with your summer BBQ. Now get outta here before I kiss you on the mouth.