Photo by Blue Rose Photography
Stop, It’s Hammer Time: Cider Margarita with Twin Pines Orchards

Known as the “Onion Capital of Canada,” Thedford is a small community in Ontario and home to Twin Pines Orchards & Cider House. Growing, pressing and fermenting on the property gives this producer the title of “estate winery” and their Hammerbent Red sparkling cider is a best of the orchard blend, using Red Court Cortland, Northern Spy, Ida Red and Golden Russet apples. This cider has a light and airy quality with a soft carbonation — honey and agave are distinct flavors, a perfect match for the Hammer Time Margarita.

This cocktail uses a fresh lime mix with just a hint of smoky chipotle, pairing with the sweetness of the cider. If you’ve got the BBQ fired up, try grilling lime wedges for a unique garnish.

Hammer Time Margarita
Makes 1 cocktail

1 ½ ounces silver tequila
1 ½ ounces Sassy Lime Sour (recipe follows)
2 ounces Hammerbent Red sparkling cider, chilled
Garnish: thin red apple slice, lime wheel

Measure the tequila and Sassy Lime Sour into a cocktail shaker. Fill the shaker with ice, cap and shake vigorously. Pour drink into a tall glass and top with cider, stir to combine. Garnish with apple slice and lime wheel.

Sassy Lime Sour

A touch of chipotle adds a subtle kick to this fresh cocktail mixer. For large parties, just double or triple the recipe. Store refrigerated for up to 1 week.

Makes about 3 cups

¼ teaspoon chipotle chili powder
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1 ½ cups fresh squeezed lime juice

In a small saucepan, combine the chili powder, sugar and water and bring to a boil over high heat. Immediately remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature. Stir in the lime juice. Transfer to a bottle and refrigerate. Shake lightly before using.

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