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Winter Grapefruit and Elderflower Thyme Spritzer

Winter Grapefruit and Elderflower Thyme Spritzer is a refreshing cocktail that promises summer is on the horizon.  To make, shake up the winter bounty of citrus and hardy winter herbs like thyme which pair nicely with a floral gin and top with an effervescent elderflower soda.

Serves: 2

Yield: 12-ounce cocktails

Glassware: 12-ounce stemless champagne flute




  • 1 grapefruit
  • 3 ounces gin
  • 1 ounce grapefruit limoncello, see recipe, or sub limoncello
  • ½ ounce thyme syrup
  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle elderflower soda
  • 2 sprigs of thyme, garnish

Thyme Simple Syrup:

  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle elderflower soda
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup fresh thyme


Make Thyme Syrup:

Combine the water, sugar, and thyme in a heavy-bottomed saucepan.

Bring elderflower soda and sugar to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. When sugar is dissolved, turn off the heat and allow the thyme to steep until the mixture cools to room temperature.  Finally, strain into a covered container, and refrigerate.

Make Cocktail:

Halve the grapefruit and slice 2 half-moon slices to reserve for garnish.  Juice remaining grapefruit into a cocktail shaker full of ice and top with gin, grapefruit limoncello, and the thyme syrup.  Shake vigorously until the shaker is frosty on the outside.

Strain into glasses full of ice and top with elderflower soda.  Garnish with a slice of grapefruit and sprig of fresh thyme.

Rad Remix:

Grapefruits can be substituted for sour oranges or a mixture of lemons and mandarines and thyme can be substituted or enhanced with rosemary or lemon thyme.

For a party-sized pre-batched cocktail squeeze 3 grapefruits into a pitcher full of ice and 

Stir in a ½ liter Gin with 1 cup grapefruit limoncello, 3 (12-ounce) bottles of elderflower soda and ¼ – ½  cup thyme simple syrup (the amount of sweetness is to one’s preference and to find balance from the tart grapefruit.).

A beautiful winter addition to fresh thyme and slices of grapefruit is to stir in pomegranate arils.