Thirsty Thursday: Birthday booze

Margaritas garnished with a wedge of lime. You can make your own margaritas at home with tequila and lime. Photo by Brian Jones/Unsplash

Alas, fellow reader, the title of this week’s Thirsty Thursday does not refer to my birthday, but rather, that of one of my sisters’. Today is my eldest sister’s 25th birthday, and to commemorate that quarter-century accomplishment, I am sharing some of her favorite drinks so that you may celebrate in her fashion. 


Not one for too many frills, dear ol’ sis favors a well-crafted margarita for her festivities. A refreshing and versatile cocktail, the bite of good tequila and a classic salt rim balance out too much sweetness. The tartness of lime finishes off the flavor — a surprisingly complex-tasting drink for such a simple recipe. 

Create your own marvelous margarita by adding two ounces of tequila, the juice of one lime and a half ounce of triple sec to a cocktail shaker filled with ice. After shaking the contents, pour the drink into a glass of your choosing with a salted rim and garnished with a wedge of lime. 

The birthday girl has just informed me that she is in the mood for a passion fruit-forward cocktail, so add some passion fruit nectar (to taste) to your margarita for a fruity twist. 

Martini & Rossi Asti Sparkling Wine 

As you will soon realize, my sister doesn’t like her drinks to be too sweet. For wines, that often includes moscatos, rosés and champagnes. So I was a bit surprised when she told me that a special drink she and her boyfriend like to share is a sparkling wine — specifically, Martini & Rossi Asti, an Italian wine. However, when she popped open a bottle at home, and I had my first taste, I understood why she enjoys Asti. The drink is crisp, light and reminiscent of fruity notes like apple and pear. Usually, I’ll try wines and think dubiously about the claims of flavor notes, struggling to taste the alleged blackberry or citrus. Yet, lighter, high-quality wines like Asti allow the underlying flavors to flow, not relying on sugar to be palatable. The best part is, Martini & Rossi Asti is fairly affordable for sparkling wine: pick up a 750 milliliter bottle from Total Wine for around $13. 

Local IPAs and brews 

Over the few months I have been of legal drinking age, I have learned that my eldest sister and I have somewhat different alcohol tastes. I gravitate towards cocktails with interesting ingredients, and she’ll usually keep it simple with an aforementioned margarita, vodka soda or beer. I’m all for trying what’s out there, but I can’t say beer is my favorite — I’ll drink it if it’s a specialty or works well with the food I’m eating. I understand why she likes it: in the summer or with rich foods like ramen, it’s refreshing and light. And it’s fun to see what local breweries concoct when you travel. More often than not — like when I drink wine — I’ll expect more out of the “jammy” or “spicy” flavors than I actually get. But in honor of the sister, I’ll recommend cracking open the classic lager and ales of Narragansett Brewing or any of the fun varieties from Connecticut local Two Roads. 

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