Last weekend my good friend Nancie visited me from San Diego. We spent the weekend shopping for vintage excessories for our vintage homes. Nancie is an incredible decorator and has an eye for a bargain like no other. She also loves a “do it yourself “project. We decided to try to save a glass top from a very old and rusty umbrella table to put on my new (old) black iron patio table. Far be it from us to add to the landfill. We spent a good two hours on this project including several trips to my neighbor Tom’s very well stocked tool shed. We got the table disassembled but were struggling with the metal ring around the edge. We resorted to a hacksaw. When we lifted the glass up to put it on the table to cut the rim off, we realized it was 4 inches in diameter TOO BIG!!! Neither of us thought to measure first.
Nancie thought this effort entitled us to cocktails on the porch. Since there is not much of an alcohol selection in my house we headed out to Trader Joe’s to buy some vodka. Nancie likes good vodka, expensive vodka but she was not willing to pay the price. I told her that a clerk at BevMO told me once that you could turn the cheapest vodka into very fine vodka simply by filtering it through a coffee filter. Now that was a DIY project she could get behind.
We bought the very cheapest we could find. When we got home, we tasted it straight and it was awful, even to me. Tasted just like rubbing alcohol. We poured it through a coffee filter into a pitcher and then tasted it again. There was a noticeable improvement. We decided to filter it again and ( I am not lying!) it became smooth and drinkable. We mixed it with the only thing I had, raspberry crystal light. Not a five star cocktail but after the day we had, it worked just fine.
Last night I had my friends Bob and Chris over for dinner. Bob is responsible for my move to this adorable house. He was always talking about biking to the farmer’s market and that inspired me to make this change. I finally got around to inviting them for dinner in my new house. I made my famous Raspberry Chipotle Sauce on Flank Steak and as you know, after making the sauce you are left with some delicious raspberry syrup. I thought it would be fun to make Raspberry Cosmos with the aforementioned “elevated” cheap vodka. Turns out Bob is something of a vodka connoisseur so they were the perfect guests to try this out on. They loved this drink!
Of course Bob pointed out that if you are going to add delicious raspberry syrup to it, it is kind of a waste to use the good stuff anyway. Point well taken but I still think it’s a tip worth sharing. These economic times call for some creativity!Tags: cheap vodka, cocktails, flank steak, frugal tip, Raspberries, vodka