Grapefruit and Rosemary Spritzer


Grapefruit and Rosemary Sparkler

When I think of spritzers, I picture a group of old ladies tanning on the beaches of South Beach in their 1970s sunglasses and floral dress bathing suits (I not-so-secretly want one). I imagine them gossiping about the neighbors and telling one or two inappropriate jokes that all of them juuust love, especially since they’ve all had one too many white wine spritzers. And you can bet ice cubes are in those white wine spritzers. Definitely.

This picture I painted has inspired me to make my own spritzer (sans white wine). I feel like we’re all just dangling on the cusp of Winter, waiting for it to transform into Spring. It hasn’t yet. Winter is still here.

I’m not going to complain about the weather because that’s lame, but dude am I so ready for strawberries, peas and some asparagus. It’s almost time. Until then…let’s make spritzers with grapefruit and rosemary and dream about big sunglasses and coconut smelling suntan lotion.

This recipe starts with making a rosemary simple syrup. Sugar, water and rosemary.

I allowed it to steep while I made and assembled everything else.

Next, I made a sugar, salt and grapefruit zest rim situation. I don’t know the technical term for this so I’m calling it a situation. A delicious situation.

It satisfies that salty/sugary combination that we just never get sick of.

I mixed together sugar, less salt and grapefruit zest. I used my hands to mix it all together and to agitate the grapefruit zest. It became more grapefruit-ey and more aromatic. Success.

The ruby red grapefruits are juiced.

The glasses’ rims are coated in the salty/sugary/zesty stuff.

Grapefruit juice is divided, rosemary syrup is added and sparkling water tops it all off.

Can I tell you a not-so-fun Adrianna fact? I’m kind of allergic to alcohol. Like, I’m not allergic, allergic, but if I have more than one drink I start to sneeze. Most people find it charming and cute, but it’s actually just seriously annoying and makes me not want to drink, I guess because I associate drinking with sneezing? I think that.

This drink doesn’t have white wine or alcohol but it should! Oh should it.

Might I suggest a few glugs of tequila, gin (oh that’d be amazing) or even vodka.

Rosemary and grapefruit work wonders with one another. There’s this sweet tartness which is so lovely with the super aromatic and warm rosemary.

Grapefruit and Rosemary Sparkler

Grapefruit and Rosemary Spritzer

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Serving Size: 2 Dranks


Rosemary Syrup:

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3-4 sprigs rosemary, and a few more for garnish

Rim and Drink:

  • 2-3 ruby red grapefruits, zest and juice
  • 2 tablespoons cane sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Sparkling water


  • Place a saucepan over medium heat and add the water and sugar; and then mix until the sugar dissolves. Add the sprigs of rosemary and bring the mixture to a simmer, cooking for 5 minutes. Take the pan off the heat and allow the syrup to steep while you make the rest of the drink, about 10 minutes. After it's done steeping, remove the sprigs of rosemary and discard. Note: You could also make this rosemary syrup ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you're ready to use it.
  • Next, make the mixture that'll rim the glasses. Combine the sugar, salt and grapefruit zest, rubbing the mixture with your fingers--this will release all of the zest's fragrance. Set aside. Juice the grapefruits, which will result in approximately 1 1/4 cup of juice. Run the juice through a strainer and discard the pulp.
  • To assemble the drinks, add 1/4 cup of grapefruit juice to a shallow bowl. Dip the rim of the glasses into the grapefruit juice and then immediately dip them into the sugar/salt mixture. Fill the glasses with ice. Divide the grapefruit juice between the two glasses. Pour in two or three teaspoons of rosemary syrup, top with sparkling water and mix the drink with a spoon. Adjust syrup content accordingly. Garnish with a few sprigs of fresh rosemary and drink!
  • If you're feeling crazy and adventurous, I recommend torching the rosemary leaves with a kitchen torch or over a gas range. Garnish and experience a smokier, more aromatic drink.

Oh and if you're feeling a little crazy and experimental, I urge you to try this: torch the rosemary and then garnish with it--it'll be a completely different experience.

    Before you take your first sip, all smell are aromas of smoke, strong rosemary; it'll totally overload your nose, but when you take a sip, it'll be nothing but sweet citrus. It's a fun little experiment. I recommend doing it both ways and comparing to see which one you like more.

      And you don't need a kitchen torch, you can totally just do this over a gas range!

        (This addition of geniusness is brought to you by my dude, Joshua.)

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          Grapefruit and Rosemary Sparkler

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        • Reply Christy April 21, 2014 at 7:23 am

          I’ve made this drink like five times, and everyone loves it! Even my four year old niece was like “this is the BEST drink I’ve ever had!” My mom raves about it and somehow conveniently keeps having a bag of grapefruits and some freshly picked rosemary handy when I come over for dinner. So from myself and my family, THANK YOU!

        • Reply Karen April 2, 2013 at 3:35 pm

          I’m very, very certain I would love to drink one of these. And then maybe another.. Rosemary and citrus *always*!

        • Reply Sophie April 1, 2013 at 8:39 am

          This is the second Cozy Kitchen recipe we made this week 🙂 And these were SO good!! I added gin and it was the star of our pre-Easter-feast cocktail hour. My husband is both a cocktail and gin snob, and he became a bit obsessed with this drink and declared we will drink them all spring long. We even put some rosemary sprigs in the gin bottle for a couple hours for extra flavor. The torched rosemary was genius! The smoky aroma combined with the grapefruit and gin made me feel like I was drinking a toasty pine tree 🙂 In a good way! AWESOME drink recipe, Adrianna!

          • Reply Adrianna April 1, 2013 at 4:16 pm

            Love this! And I’m so stoked you torched the rosemary. Such a weird and fun result!

        • Reply Jessica March 18, 2013 at 8:15 am

          The grapefruit & rosemary combo sounds soooooo good! I’ll definitely make this for my fiance who doesn’t drink and throw a lil gin in my glass. I just found your blog and I will definitely be adding it to my reader!

        • Reply Karissa March 15, 2013 at 10:09 am

          Oh my god, the sneezing thing… I thought I was the only one on earth who had that problem. That’s so funny. It doesn’t happen to me all the time but when it does, it’s unstoppable- like 14 sneezes in a row, running to the bar bathroom in embarrassment type deal. Good to know I am not alone in this very weird affliction hahaha.

          That said, this looks delicious and I will be trying it ASAP.

          • Reply Adrianna March 15, 2013 at 12:59 pm

            Good gracious. I thought I was the only one! Thank goodness there’s someone else out there who understands my embarrassing alcohol allergy. I love the internet!

            • Reply Karissa March 24, 2013 at 4:21 pm

              Okay, just had to update- I tried a slightly different version of this, infusing vodka with the rosemary instead of making a syrup with it. I also took your dude’s advice and garnished with a little rosemary I torched over my gas stove. And can I just say… oh my godddd. My new summer cocktail. I will be making this 1000x over again. Thank you for being so awesome.

              And the best part- no sneezing while i drank it! 🙂

              • Reply Adrianna March 27, 2013 at 6:37 pm

                OH That’s amazing. LOVE this.

        • Reply meatballs & milkshakes March 14, 2013 at 10:29 am

          Love the rosemary tip! Might try it over the gas stove burner…hopefully won’t set everything on fire.

        • Reply Monique March 14, 2013 at 8:12 am

          This drink sounds amazing! The addition of rosemary probably gives it an unexpected twist. Lovely photos as well!

        • Reply Rachel March 14, 2013 at 1:09 am

          i love your glasses! where did you get them? are they vintage? thanks!

          • Reply Adrianna March 14, 2013 at 9:23 am

            Nope! They’re from Ikea. I think they were about $1 a piece. They have the best/cheapest kitchen stuff!

        • Reply Natalie March 13, 2013 at 5:51 pm

          Lovely photos! This drink sounds so refreshing.

        • Reply Holly Henderson March 13, 2013 at 1:30 pm

          I’m allergic to alcohol too! I don’t do anything cute like sneeze, it’s much more drastic, so it’s lovely to see an alcohol-free beverage that would be amazing as is!

        • Reply Megan @ Hint of Vanilla March 12, 2013 at 7:22 pm

          It’s great to see an awesome recipe that doesn’t call for alcohol. I can’t stand the taste of most alcohols – it’s so bad that I can’t even enjoy mixed drinks or wine! 🙁 Makes me feel pretty weird, especially when people ask me about it. I want to enjoy fancy, tasty drinks too! Just….without the alcohol…

          Thanks for making a delicious looking non alcoholic drink!

        • Reply Jana March 12, 2013 at 1:02 pm

          I love this drink. Had some cake and something with a friend today – the “and something” usually is some exquisite drink, like cognac or desert wine – and I just made a couple of these spritzer and it was fantastic with some cheesecake… We later on tried it with a “dash” of Hendrick’s Gin and I love both versions! Thanks a lot.

          • Reply Jana March 12, 2013 at 1:03 pm

            Oh I forgot…. the sugar and salt rim was F A N T A S T I C!

          • Reply Adrianna March 12, 2013 at 1:35 pm

            LOVE THIS!

        • Reply Bernadette @ Now Stir It Up March 12, 2013 at 12:28 pm

          Im kinda allergic to alcohol too. I think that makes me appreciate thoughtful non-alcoholic drinks such as this one.

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