In the September issue of 7x7 (on stands now), spirits writer Lou Bustamante rounds up the seven frozen cocktails in SF worth risking a brain freeze for ("The Big Chill", p. 102). Our top pick was Coqueta bar manager Joe Cleveland's bright, icy punch. He shared the recipe, so you can consider yourself prepared when Indian summer finally decides to strike.
Coqueta’s Honeydew Punch
1/2 honeydew melon
2 cups lemon-mint shrub (see below)
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 cups 123 Organic Tequila blanco
3/4 cup Rhum Clément
8 cubes cucumber ice (see below)
8 lemon wheels, 1/4-inch thick
8 cucumber wheels, 1/4-inch thick
8 mint sprigs
8 cantaloupe melon balls
8 micro marigolds or other edible flower
8 squash blossoms
1. Juice the honeydew in a blender and strain, or use a juice extractor.
2. Combine melon juice, shrub, lemon juice, tequila, and rum in a punch bowl.
3. To serve, crack 8 cubes of cucumber ice one at a time in your hand with the back of a spoon and place each in a rocks glass. The crush size can vary based on individual preference (at Coqueta, it’s a fairly small crush).
4. Add 1 cup of punch to each glass, and garnish with a lemon wheel, cucumber wheel, mint sprig, cantaloupe ball, micro marigold, and a squash blossom.
Makes 2 cups
2 mint sprigs
Zest of 2 lemons
1 cup sugar
2 bags mint tea
1 cup boiling water
1. Place mint and lemon zest in a sealable pint-sized container, and cover with sugar.
2. Cover and set aside for 24 hours.
3. In a large, heat-resistant bowl, steep the tea bags in the cup of boiling water for 6 minutes.
4. Remove the tea bags, and stir in the sugar mixture. Let sit for 30 minutes.
5. Strain. This shrub will last refrigerated for one month.
1. Juice one large, skin-on cucumber in a blender and strain, or use a juice extractor.
2. Freeze liquid in large ice cube molds.