Eat Good Food

Aperitif Recipe: SHED’s French 25 Twist

The traditional apéritif, also called an apéro for short, is a French ritual. Before eating dinner (and sometimes lunch), the French like to enjoy a low-alcohol apéritif with friends and family – whether it be a cocktail, liqueur, or wine.

A chance to relax and chat before eating a meal, the apéritif is normally served with light snacks such as olives, cheese and crackers, nuts, or crisps and is an opportunity to whet the appetite before the meal.

It’s common to touch glasses and say “Santé!” (good health!) or “Tchin-Tchin!” (cheers!)

The French 25 is a twist on the classic French 75 apéritif. Created by SHED Beverage and Café Manager Patricia Philitsa, this summer cocktail features Meyer lemon juice and lavender. It’s perfect for a French-inspired afternoon on the terrace.

French 25 Aperitif
Serves 2

1 ounce Lillet Blanc
1/2 ounce oz D’Pampe Vermouth Rosé
3/4 ounce fresh Meyer lemon juice (can substitute fresh orange juice)
2 dashes lavender bitters
Sparkling wine
Sprig of lavender

In cocktail shaker, combine Lillet Blanc, D’Pampe Vermouth Rosé, Meyer lemon juice, and lavender bitters.

Add ice and shake vigorously for 20 seconds.

Strain into chilled Champagne flute and top with sparkling wine.

Garnish drink with lavender and serve.

Santé!

Grow Your Own

Protecting Citrus Trees from Frost

protecting citrus trees from frost

Protecting citrus trees from frost helps to guarantee your annual crop. It doesn’t take long and is so worth the effort!

Here is our shortlist of important things to keep in mind:

  • New citrus trees should be planted in the early spring to allow for root development before summer heat.
  • Plants exposed in open areas to winds, especially in low areas of the garden, are most likely to suffer frost damage first, as cold air accumulates in such pockets. For protection, consider planting citrus trees near walls and fences, which trap and radiate heat.
  • Before an expected frost, water trees well, but don’t get the leaves or trunk wet as they are most vulnerable. Keep the ground as clear as possible of weeds or mulch to allow for more heat to be retained from daylight sun.
  • Protect young tree trunks with cardboard, wrapped tightly around the trunk just before nightfall, from the lowermost branches to the soil. Also consider covering trees with breathable, water permeable frost blankets for the night, and remove during the day.
  • When frost hits, ice crystals form inside the plant cells, disrupting the flow of fluids, causing cells to break down.

Overall, when temperatures fall to 29°F for 30 minutes or longer, some frost damage to tender citrus plants will occur. Certain citrus  – citron, lemon, lime, and Satsuma mandarins among them — are more sensitive than others.

  • As applicable, remove frost-damaged fruit with cracked skin immediately to prevent fungus and mold spreading throughout the tree. (Yellowing leaves in winter are common, and may be a sign of over- or under-watering.)
  • Wait to prune damaged branches until spring, to allow for further analysis and recovery in warmer weather. Remember to clean pruning tools to avoid the spread of disease.

Want more? Here’s our guide to California winter citrus.