Cucumber Lavender Gin Cooler

 

Lavender (calming) + Cucumber (cooling) + Gin (relaxing).  The perfect spring cocktail.  I have always loved the smell of lavender, and who doesn't love Hendrick's Gin?  Although, according to their website, "it's not for everyone".  I was lucky to find a great source for organic culinary lavender at the Pearl Farmer's market--Imagine Lavender farms.  A little goes a long way so $9.50 for the jar has been money well spent.

Lavender-Cucumber simple syrup

1 cup sugar

1 cup water

1 teaspoon lavender

1 cucumber, peeled and sliced

In a small saucepan dissolve sugar in water over low heat.  Add lavender and sliced cucumber and bring to simmer, then remove from heat and allow to steep for 30 min.  Strain and cool.

Cooler

1 oz. Hendricks gin

1 oz. cucumber/lavender simple syrup

1/2 oz. blood orange bitters

Squeeze of lime

Mix gin, simple syrup, bitters and lime in cocktail shaker.  Pour over ice into tall glass and top with sparkling water.  Stir gently.

This syrup is also delicious without the gin, just add a little more lime juice.