Memorial Day BBQ'n and Demon Punch

This Memorial day some friends and I threw our 5th annual Boulevard BBQ to kick off the summer. Complete with butter burgers, beer brats, badminton, bocce ball and of course, party punch! We feature a new punch every year for the guests who arrive early. This year it was Nandini's Demon Punch...the name says it all. The secret to a good punch is the 5 S's. Some kind of spirit, something spicy, something sweet, something sour and something sparkling.

Spirits: gin, vodka, brandy, cognac, rum or tequila.
Spice: good strong tea, herbs, vanilla, fresh ginger, or even a spicy chili from the garden.
Sweet: simple syrup, honey syrup, sweet liqueur or juice.
Sour: fresh squeezed lemon, or lime juice.
Sparkling: soda water, ginger ale or sparkling wine.

Garnish with fresh berries, herbs, slices of orange or even a giant block of molded ice!

Here is Nandini's recipe for Demon Punch, altered from a recipe from the 1940's found in Gourmet magazine. (this is the party size-half it for less)

Demon Punch

2 bottles of Applejack Brandy
1/2 bottle El Dorado rum
1 pineapple, cut into chunks
2 cups of pitted cherries
Couple bunches of mint (I never measure, but, enough to look pretty)
3-4 cups sugar
1.5 c each of fresh squeezed orange, grapefruit and lemon juice
2 qts. STRONGLY BREWED Black tea- I used assam black nibs, some french black, and assam earl grey (i just did one really strong qt. and mixed with water, but I think I like the flavor better when its 2 qt. of tea)
1 Liter of Soda water

Muddle the mint, sugar, and some tea. Add the rest except soda. Chill and let macerate for an hour (or put a giant heart ice cube in it)
Top it off with soda and ladle over ice.

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