Three pre-game cocktails in honor of CSU’s new football digs.
GAME DAYS WILL LOOK drastically different for Colorado State University football fans this season. A new location. A shiny, new stadium with a shiny, new field. A new view. New tailgate rituals to accompany tried-and-true traditions.
And all that change will hopefully extend to the cocktails you pour into your red Solo cups and responsibly enjoy pre-game. In honor of CSU’s $220 million, 41,000-person capacity stadium, we asked three local pros to offer up cocktail recipes to help you tailgate with some new and delicious flavors this season.
Grilled Pineapple Mojito
Courtesy of CopperMuse Distillery
Jason Hevelone, CSU grad and president at CopperMuse Distillery, recommends having a cocktail that you can prep at home “so that you don’t have to drag annoying barware to your tailgate.” His recipe is fruity and sweet, a perfect pairing for game-day grilling. Plus, mint and pineapple are a nod to the green and gold.
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1 bunch of fresh mint, about 1 1/2 tightly packed cups, washed and divided
6 (1/2-inch) slices of pineapple, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (6 to 8 limes)
2.5 cups CopperMuse Silver Rum
1 liter club soda, chilled
In a saucepan, combine sugar, water and half the mint to create a simple syrup. Simmer over medium high heat until the sugar dissolves. Allow the simple syrup mixture to cool to room temperature, strain and chill in a sealed container. Core and cut pineapple, place in container and chill. Wash mint and divide into small pieces. Squeeze the lime juice and store.
Grill pineapple pieces for about three minutes per side over medium high heat until browned and caramelized. In a large pitcher, combine most of the pineapple (reserve 6 to 8 pieces of pineapple for garnish), the rest of the mint and a splash of the lime juice. Muddle. Add simple syrup, remaining lime juice, rum and club soda. Stir. Pour into ice-filled glasses. Garnish with reserved pineapple.
Ram The Buffaloes
Courtesy of Cafe Vino
Bloody Marys are the ideal tailgate cocktails for morning games: Easy to prepare, easy to drink. The cocktail from TJ at Cafe Vino is a classic—with a balsamic twist.
Cafe Vino’s Bloody Mary Mix Ingredients
3 46-oz. cans of tomato juice
3/4 C. lemon juice
3/4 cup lime juice
1/4 cup horseradish
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon celery salt
1 tablespoon cayenne
Salt and pepper
Cocktail Ingredients (per serving)
2 oz. Buffalo Trace Whiskey
3 oz. Cafe Vino’s Bloody Mary mix
Combine bloody Mary mix ingredients and whisk together.
Combine whiskey and bloody Mary mix in glasses filled with ice. Garnish with a skewer of bacon-wrapped dates (from Cafe Vino, of course), balsamic glaze and crumbles of blue cheese.
Courtesy of Sonny Lubick Steakhouse
We couldn’t talk CSU football without including the great Sonny Lubick. Corey Barnes and crew from Sonny Lubick Steakhouse developed this blood-orange screwdriver as a perfect pregame drink. And when it’s done right, it comes out a nice shade of Aggie gold, “which fits the cause,” Barnes says. He suggests making this easy recipe in big batches the night before. Don’t forget to use local vodka.
1 part Dry Town Vodka
3 parts blood orange juice
Squeeze of lime juice
1 C. strawberries (optional)
Clean and core strawberries. Place in food processor and puree. Put in container, seal and refrigerate. Cut limes into wedges, put in container, seal and refrigerate. Mix vodka and blood orange juice. Refrigerate.
Pour screwdriver over ice. Add a splash of the pureed strawberries if using. Garnish with lime. Enjoy!