Friday Nite Lite

Just because a girl isn’t actually in Italy

doesn’t mean she can’t at least pretend!

On a hot summer evening

there is nothing quite so lovely as

a fresh Prosecco cocktail.

I found this one in the San Diego News Network blog.

The writer had just come back 

from the new Italian hotspot Puglia.

(I say new hotspot, because it is undergoing the overwhelming

nouveau popularity that Tuscany, then Umbria

endured more recently)

This was what she drank in Puglia:

Strawberry Smash

(they probably don’t call it that in Italy…)

This variation on the mojito lets you mix strawberries with your favorite herb such as mint, basil, lemon verbena, cilantro, rosemary or thyme. Try the drink out before serving it friends to get the amount of herbs right for you.  

Makes 1 cocktail

3 ripe organic strawberries, hulled and sliced
6 leaves of one fresh herb such as mint, basil, verbena, cilantro OR 1-inch section of fresh rosemary or thyme
1 ounce good white rum like 10 Cane or clean white gin like Bombay Sapphire
1 ounce all-natural sour mix (see note)
2 ounces prosecco

Add the strawberries and your selected herb to a rocks glass. Smash the strawberries and herbs gently with a muddler until the berries are a pulp and the herbs smell strong. Add the rum or gin if using and sour mix to the glass and give it a stir. Fill 3/4 full with ice. Top off with the prosecco. Garnish with a sprig of the herb you used.

Note: To create my all natural sour mix, mix 1 cup lemon and or lime juice with 1 cup sugar in a medium non-reactive saucepan. Heat over a low-medium flame, stirring to dissolve the sugar. When cool, pour syrup into a sterile glass bottle and refrigerate. Keeps for up to 2 weeks.


The Ipanema Caipirinha

All this talk about bikinis this week

got me thinking about the home of the bikini,


Which in turn got me thinking about a fabulous happy hour

moment we could have, combining the bikini, Brazil, and a

refreshing summertime cocktail,

the Caipirinha.

In this case, 

the Caipirinha de Ipanema

from the Naples Grand Resort in Florida.

 Here’s what you need:

1 1/2 oz Cachaca de Brazil

2 lime wheels

2sugar cubes


Muddle the sugar and lime together, add the cachaca, shake and strain into a lime sugar rimmed glass.

Garnish with lime and a twist.

Simple, non?

And oh so chic!

Cachaca is the national drink of Brazil,

where the perfect body is not only coveted,

but romps en masse all over the beaches daily.

I think they’re onto something…


bikini clad bottoms on Ipanema beach 


Funnily enough, Cachaca is derived from sugar cane.

And everyone wants us to believe that sugar is bad for us.

Looks like its working for these girls.