Cocktail of the Month: Le Coucher de Soleil

Cocktails, Drinks, Entertaining
on March 1, 2013
Coucher de Soleil
Photo by Richard Swearinger

No time of year brings sunsets quite like spring, with their streaks of vibrant colors gleaming through the clear, bright air. Toast the dynamic evening show with this drink, called “Le Coucher de Soleil.”  The name is French for “sunset”—the pinkish-red grenadine and slice of lemon resemble the streaks of color in the sky at the end of the day.

I first discovered this zippy and refreshing concoction in St. Jean de Luz, a lovely seaside resort on France’s southern Atlantic coast—a place of beautiful sunsets indeed.

For each cocktail:

1 1/2 ounces gin

3/4 ounce Cointreau or triple sec

3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice

4 or 5 ice cubes, plus more for serving

3 to 4 ounces chilled tonic water

Drizzle of grenadine syrup

1 lemon or orange slice, for garnish

Combine gin, Cointreau, lemon juice and ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake well and strain into an ice-filled 8-ounce glass. Top with chilled tonic water and stir gently. Drizzle with just a little grenadine and garnish with a lemon or orange slice.

Thanks to the grenadine syrup, Le Coucher de Soleil has a touch of sweetness that will help rein in the heat of spicy appetizers appetizers.

Relish wine and cocktails columnist WINI MORANVILLE guides you to the best wine and spirits for the money. She is the author of The Bonne Femme Cookbook, Simple, Splendid Food That French Women Cook Every Day.