There are some drinks that you know, just by looking at them, are going to be good and hoo boy, is the Desert Healer one of them.
The flavours of gin and cherry brandy together might sound dated, or perhaps boring, but when you add them to orange juice and ginger beer it somehow creates something magical. Neither alcohol is dominant on the palate and both blend well with the sweet citrus of the orange juice and the spice of the ginger beer; it’s fresh and moreish, which we discovered to our dismay when we were sat out in the sunshine – in our tiny garden, don’t worry – and found our glasses empty in no time at all. The Desert Healer is the perfect summer cocktail with it’s fresh flavours, and although it’s sweet it’s not overwhelmingly so. The strong orange colour is so vibrant and inviting, it all but begs you to dive head first into it. It’s comforting, and reminds you of simpler times when we could go out and relax, care free, on a bar’s rooftop terrace with friends.
If ginger beer is a divisive flavour for you, don’t worry; it doesn’t overpower the cocktail, so I’d encourage you to give it a go even if it’s something you’d typically shy away from. As the recipe says to use anywhere between 3 to 5 ounces, I would suggest sticking with the lower end of the scale if you’re wary of the ginger flavour. I used 3 ounces and both my husband and I found it to be a perfect balance, and he is firmly against the existence of ginger beer full stop.
Give the Desert Healer a go the next time you want to sit out and bask in the warm weather, and you just might find a new favourite drink.
♦ 1 ½ ounces gin
♦ ½ ounce cherry brandy
♦ 3 ounces fresh orange juice
♦ 3 – 5 ounces ginger beer
Shake the first 3 ingredients together with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Top with the ginger beer, and serve. Add a cocktail cherry if you’re feeling fancy.