Layered Grapefruit and Rose Vodka Soda

Hello summer, my old friend. After approximately 700 consecutive days of rain the sun has finally come out to play.

This is one of the rainiest summers I can remember in Edmonton. The last time it rained this much was eight years ago and Justin and I were so over it we spontaneously booked a trip to the sunny Algarve in Portugal.

Eight years and two kids later, spontaneous European vacations are about as likely as my kid sleeping through the night, so it was time to get a bit more resourceful and do something to make it feel a bit more like summer…and for Holly and I that meant drinking a refreshing cocktail out in the sun.

This cocktail came together rather haphazardly late one afternoon. Holly (@chandeliers.and.champagne) and I were hanging out with our wild toddlers and didn’t have a whole lot of time to make a fancy drink. So, Holly busted out a bottle of Grapefruit and Rose Vodka she had just picked up and threw a quick cocktail together.

We had no idea how pretty the drink was going to look but the colours layered themselves beautifully and we knew we had to recreate this drink for our blogs. Not only does this Vodka Soda look great, the taste is fantastic too. It’s a refreshing, citrusy cocktail perfect for a summer day, and a great option for those who like to avoid sugary concoctions.

Layered Grapefruit and Rose Vodka Soda

Yields 1 cocktail

You’ll need: 

  • 1.5 oz Grapefruit and Rose vodka (we used Ketel One Botanical)
  • Juice of half a grapefruit
  • Club soda
  • Large handful of ice

Directions:

Fill your glass with ice. Juice half of a grapefruit and add to glass along with 1.5 oz of vodka. Top with club soda. Voila, it’s that’s easy!

Hope you enjoy this refreshing summer cocktail, be sure to follow along on Instagram (@alexandtribe, @chandeliers.and.champagne) to see what else we come up with over the course of the summer and tag us in you pics if you recreate any of our cocktails.

Cheers! Alex & Holly

Tips for a great Dîner en Blanc experience

I’ve never met a theme I didn’t like. I’m always down for a great party, but one with a fun dress code? Even better! I’ve now been to three Dîner en Blanc’s in Edmonton so I feel like I have a good handle on what to expect and how to make it a great night.

If you’ve never heard of Dîner en Blanc before here is a bit of history. The event was started in Paris, 31 years ago when a Frenchman invited a group of people to an elegant picnic and asked them to all dress in white so that they could easily find each other. Now, the event is held in 80 cities in 30 countries around the world.

This year, Edmonton’s event was held on the field at Commonwealth Stadium, where our professional football team plays. Unfortunately, the weather was not on our side. It rained so hard. And not a quick, light shower. It was a torrential downpour, with thunder and lightning and wind. It was a gong show, but you know what, we still had such a fun time. Attitude is everything (refer to tip 4) and our group had a great one.

If you’re getting ready for your first Dîner en Blanc here are five tips to make it a great experience.

1. Make sure you wear white. I know, sounds obvious, that’s the dress code, but there are always people who show up in cream or have another colour on their dress. You stick out like a sore thumb, so look for an outfit that’s all white. Also, it’s a dressy event, so leave the white jeans and sneakers at home.

2. Have fun with your accessories. I love to wear flower crowns, so that’s my go-to for this event, but I’ve seen people in fascinators, white wigs, tutus and boas. It’s not everyday you get to have so much fun with your outfit, so don’t waste the opportunity! Also, ladies, please wear flats. Sometimes the event is held in the grass, sometimes you have a 15 minute walk to get there, regardless you’ll be so much more comfortable in flat shoes.

3. Prepare for the weather. I’ve been rained on at two out of the three events I’ve been to. Like I mentioned above, it torrentially poured on us this year, so I’m so happy I had my clear poncho and umbrella with me. Yup, you read that right, even your rain gear needs to be clear or white, so make sure you’re prepared in advance.

4. Go into it with a great attitude. I’m not going to lie, this event is a lot of work and planning. They’re also always held outdoors rain or shine. Obviously weather isn’t something you can control, but your attitude is. We got totally rained out but had such a fun time this year. I was with fun people, we had wine and dessert (we made sure to grab both when we sprinted for some cover) what more do you need!

5. Pack light. You have to pack your whole life for this event (kidding, sort of), so obviously you can only pack so light between your table, chairs, linens, food and decor, however be smart where you can. Bring collapsible table and chairs and small but attractive decor (flameless candles, flowers etc). This is even easier the larger your group. We had a group of 6 going this year and divided up responsibilities so everyone was bringing something.

Hope this helps prepare you for your first Dîner en Blanc experience. It’s really such a fun event, you just have to make sure you put in the pre-planning work. If you have any other questions about the event, or some tips of your own please share them in the comments!

À votre santé!

Water-Yellin’ Frozen Watermelon Tiki Cocktail

Grab your tropical garnishes and bust out the coconut bras and Hawaiian shirts because it’s 5 o’clock somewhere!

Since summer seems to have skipped over Edmonton this year Holly and I decided to take matters into our own hands and bring summer to us in the form of a delicious watermelon tiki drink.

While this might not be your typical rum-based tiki drink, it has all the elements that that embody what we love about a tiki cocktail. Quirky name (good job Holly), great barware, fun garnish and fruity flavours.

Instead of rum we based this cocktail around the Smirnoff Watermelon vodka. Holly and I gave it a quick taste before we made our drink and it tastes just like a boozy watermelon jolly rancher. Flavoured vodkas are a great way to switch up your favourite cocktails and experiment with new drinks.

What’s great about this cocktail is that there’s no need to add any simple syrup, the watermelon is sweet enough on its own, and the ginger adds a contrasting spicy kick. I mean really, if you look at the ingredients, it’s almost healthy (at least that’s what I’m telling myself when I go back for seconds).

Water-Yellin Frozen Watermelon Tiki Cocktail

Yields 2 cocktails

You’ll need: 

  • 4 oz watermelon vodka (we used Smirnoff)
  • 5 handfuls of frozen watermelon
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tbsp fresh pressed ginger
  • Large handful of ice

Directions:

Add vodka, frozen watermelon, lime juice, ginger juice and ice to a blender. Pour into tiki mug and garnish with a straw, paper umbrella and lime wedge.

Hope you enjoy this delicious summer cocktail, be sure to follow along on Instagram (@alexandtribe, @chandeliers.and.champagne) to see what else we come up with over the course of the summer and tag us in you pics if you recreate any of our cocktails.

Cheers! May every hour be happy hour 😉

Alex & Holly