Many people prefer sugary cocktails and are used to juices and soft drinks full of high-fructose corn syrup. These people will have trouble enjoying tart, sour, or bitter cocktails without a bit of sweetness. But there’s no need to be lazy about it. If you’re going to add sugar to a cocktail, pack it full of some extra goodness.
Basic Sugar Syrup Recipe
Basic sugar syrup is just equal parts water and sugar, heated until the sugar dissolves. It’s possible to add a number of powerful flavors into this mix so that it becomes a more valuable additive.
Hibiscus/Bissap: Heating bissap flowers with your sugar syrup provides a gorgeous deep color (and creates a syrup you can use, like Grenadine, to color your beverages).
Lime or Lemon: Mixing equal parts sugar syrup and lime/lemon juice creates the perfect sour mix—a very valuable addition to your bar and an unbeatable way to overpower poor quality liquor.
Vanilla: Vanilla beans (heated or just infused with the sugar), will add a familiar, warming vanilla taste to your sweetener.