Today I’m sharing a fun and festive Cara Cara Winter Spritz plus a few more holiday cocktail ideas made with Cara Cara oranges.
Can’t find Cara Cara’s … navel oranges are fine too.
The holiday season is underway!
Chances are you’ll be having people over.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again,
there’s no better way to welcome guests into your home than with a glass of bubbles.
Or a bubbly cocktail or spritzer.
Today I’m sharing a Cara Cara Winter Spritz.
With only three ingredients it’s quick, easy, deliciousness and festive!
When I decorated our library for Christmas, I filled a couple of compotes with mandarins.
And that got me thinking about orange-based cocktails.
Cara Cara oranges are wonderful for cocktails and are usually in season mid-December.
This year they’re late (more about that later).
To make my spritzers I used readily availably navel oranges, a cousin of the Cara Cara.
While orange juice-based cocktails can feel mimosa-esque,
Why not embrace them for all kinds of holiday and winter celebrations?
Brunch, Lunch, Cocktail Hour & Midnight Toasts
Following Images by Monica Vargas Photography
Let’s make Cara Cara Winter Spritz
You’ll need Cointreau, fresh squeezed OJ and Champagne or sparkling wine.
Dried orange slices and mint sprigs for garnish.
Your juice and sparking wine should be very well chilled.
Chilling your glasses is nice too.
When squeezing juice for multiple drinks an electric juicer is helpful.
Mine went on the fritz while making these in a batch.
I’ll probably replace it with this one.
But this heavy duty juice press is tempting … and pricier.
For just a drink or two I use a traditional hand juicer like the ones my mother and grandmother had in their kitchens.
PIN AND PRINT THE RECIPE ~
Cara Cara Winter Spritz
- 1/2 oz Cointreau
- 2 oz Fresh squeezed Cara Cara (or other) orange juice
- 4 oz Champagne or sparkling Or free pour to top glass
- 1 Dried orange slice
- 1 Mint sprig
- Add Cointreau and orange juice to glass.
- Top with sparkling wine.
- Add orange slice and mint sprig to garnish.
Cara Cara oranges are cousins to navel and blood oranges.
They have a shorter growing season and are generally available December to April.
Although I haven’t found them in our local markets yet.
Cara Cara’s are are sweeter and less acidic than other oranges, and contain higher levels of vitamins C and A.
In Ina Garten’s latest book, Go-To Dinners, she suggests ordering ‘the best oranges’ from The Sisters Market here in California’s Central Valley.
I went straight to their website, which is gorgeous by the way, and it turns out this year’s Cara Cara’s crop is not quite ready.
I sent a quick email and got an immediate response.
As you can see Cara Cara’s will be available mid-January.
That’s only a month away. Yay!
Elise, Emily & Jenna / The Sisters Market
In addition to several varieties of oranges, The Sisters Market offers in season nectarines, pomegranates, peaches and persimmons (did you read that, Kim?).
And, gift boxes … their holiday gift box looks amazing.
I might need to gift myself.
But wait, look at this Vitamin C, Tea & Chill box.
I can’t decide!
A few other cocktail ideas using Cara Cara oranges ~
Cara Cara Margarita / The Lush Life
Orange French 75 / Jessica Levinson
The Pure Cara Martini / Aperitif Friday
When all else fails and there’s no time for mixing fussy drinks,
I keep Chandon Garden Spritz in our beverage fridge ready to be poured into a chilled glass.
Garnish with orange peel and, if you’re feeling adventurous, a sprig of rosemary.
I get asked about these French Champagne glasses all the time.
They’re from Crate & Barrel and very affordable.
So there you have it.
Cara Cara Winter Spritz and a few other holiday cocktail ideas.
I hope it inspires some ideas for your holiday celebrations.
While we’re on the subject of the holiday’s and oranges, don’t miss this Orange Cranberry Bread recipe in last week’s Weekend Meanderings’s.
Need more fun drink ideas for holiday gatherings …
try my Raspberry Kir Royale Bar and Cranberry Tequila Punch.
As always, I appreciate your visit and welcome your thoughts in the comments below.
Earlier this week, niece Shelby came over to make Cara Cara Winter Spritz.
Look for our video on Friday.
Until then, cheers from Snowberry!
Pamela Of Salish Sea Cottage says
Fabulous! The Cara Cara Winter Spritz has just been added to our Christmas Eve menu. Quick, easy, and minimal ingredients is right up my alley. Thank you for this! And the Chandon? How have I missed this?? Definitely need to give it a whirl. Cheers!!
Pamela! I’m surprised you haven’t heard be babbling about the Chandon … it’s the best and you’ve got to try it! xo
I love a good cocktail, or a signature cocktail! This looks delicious and so easy. I’ve had cara cara oranges but have never heard of the sisters orchard. I will have to check them out.
Love the photo of you and Shelby!
Merry Christmas , I will “see you” on the live today!
The Sisters Market is new to me too … but I trust Ina, she never steers us wrong! xo
LA CONTESSA says
DIABLO FOODS HAD THE BEST CARA CARA IN YEARS PAST I BET THEY CAME FROM THREE SISTERS!
SALUTE TO YOU AND YOURS!
Yes, that’s where I usually buy them … and I’ll ask next time I’m there to see when they expect to receive them and their source. Merry Merry! xo
Thank you for the lovely drink inspiration. Going to add it to our Christmas menu and New Year’s Eve too. Your pictures are outstanding. You make the whole drink making process look like artwork. I so enjoy your blog. BTW….hope you get the Breville Juicer from Santa. I don’t have it, but I’m going to add it to my list. It too looks like a work of art. And sometimes we just deserve something practical yet beautiful at the same time. So few kitchen appliances are as appealing in looks as in their function.
Deanna! You’re right, sometimes we deserve the good stuff. Practical or otherwise. My thing about it is, where to keep it … I think I can overcome that. If you do make the winter spritz, be sure to let me know! Merry Merry! xo
The Cara Cara Winter Spritzer’s are so pretty. The picture of your beautiful niece Shelby and you is so sweet. What a memorable day shared. I bet you have a huge positive influence on her. How many girls can say that they have an Auntie like you that is so “in mesh” with them and they can look up to. Your life is enriched too because of your close relationship.
Awe … Katherine, that is so sweet of you. Thank you. Those girls are everything to me and I’m fortunate they’re part of my life. Hope your December is off to a great start. Merry Merry! xo
Juliet, Love the pic of you and Shelby! You are such a fun auntie. Well, I am here for this and anything uniquely Californian! I now have these on my radar and that cute Sisters Farm! Wow persimmons too? I wonder if they have pixies? We have such an amazing produce here we are lucky. This sounds delicious and we will try it with regular oranges until we can get the Caras.
Love the Chandon Spritz too and have some on hand now always thanks to you Juliet!
Oh also love this orange color in the pretty blue library!
I know, we’re so lucky, right? I’m on the look out for pixies!!! xo
Mary Ann Pickett says
I just sent your recipe to the women in my family for happy hour in the Ladies Loft. Thanks!