Blood Orange Punch

with chocolate bitters

I’m obsessed with blood oranges, so when they pop their head up at the store around this time every year, I’ve got to get as many as I possibly can. I’m already a big fan of oranges, but the blood orange is something special. Its dark red color paired with its incredibly unique both sweet and bitter flavor is something I can’t get enough of (see: there will be blood (oranges), blood orange roasted beets and this blood orange quick bread). Blood oranges, of course, go best in a cocktail. If you prefer something on the bitter side, then blood oranges are the citrus for you. Paired with the classic ingredients for a negroni (campari, gin and sweet vermouth), blood orange juice adds a pop of freshness, then everything is topped off with bubbly seltzer, but I promise I won’t judge you if you’d rather top everything off with a little prosecco and champagne – that’s what they call a good idea. I was gifted these awesome bottles by a friend a work, so I decided to use them to bring some cocktails over to a friend’s house a few weekends ago. Mix, pour and pop the lid on, then fasten the bottles into your holster and come prepared with a bottle of seltzer or bubbly, and you’ve got a party going. There is nothing more adorable than tiny, old-timey looking bottles filled with alcohol. Your friends will also be super excited to not have to bust out their shakers and stirrers and whatever else: the cocktail is already good to go!

blood orange punchInstagram time: all the food from Roberta’s and cocktails at The Pine Box.

Speaking of which, I feel as though this is the week that I could use a stiff drink. I’ve been feeling incredibly anxious lately, and there are times at which I can’t tell if I’m strong for being able to make it through each day relatively unscathed and without bothering the people around me (too much), or if I’m weak for being a whiney baby who can’t go out to meet up with friends without taking Advil for my stress headache and chugging a ginger ale for my nervous stomach. Once I’m doing the thing I’m supposed to be doing, generally I’m fine, but it’s the build-up that absolutely kills me. I start to feel dizzy, and my throat starts to close up, and then I start convincing myself that I can’t breathe even though I am clearly breathing. That’s when I start compulsively checking my pulse and trying to figure out if my heart is actually racing or if I’m just imagining it (it’s usually the latter, to be honest), and this is all followed by trying to take what have been explained to me as “calming breaths” and closing my eyes for a bit and pretending that I am cool and confident. Every single day I wish I were the kind of person who just like, I don’t know, walked around and lived, but instead, I mostly think about the following, in no particular order: Am I’m talking too much or not enough? Does my face looks weird right now? Does this dress make me look fat? Does this person wish that they weren’t talking to me right now? Why can’t I concentrate on this conversation? I could go on but it gets a lot more depressing and I don’t want to bum you guys out too much on this lovely Friday morning. Point is, I have crippling anxiety that sometimes turn into random panic attacks and I bet you do, too! Let’s commiserate and make each other feel better, PLUS hey, it’s Friday (as previously mentioned) and nothing bad can happen to you on Saturday and Sunday. Have a drink with me and relax…or at least try to.

blood orange punchblood orange punchStuff you need.

blood orange punchHello my pretty.

blood orange punchI suppose you don’t have to strain the blood orange juice, but it definitely makes for a smoother, prettier cocktail if you do and it just takes a little extra effort.

blood orange punchPour into a bottle, or serve immediately with a splash of seltzer.

blood orange punchblood orange punch

Blood Orange Punch
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
A negroni-like cocktail made with fresh blood orange juice and chocolate bitters, then topped off with a splash of seltzer.
  • 6 ounces gin
  • 6 ounces campari
  • 6 ounces sweet vermouth
  • 6 dashes chocolate bitters
  • juice of 1 blood orange
  • 12 ounces of seltzer
  1. In a mixing glass or shaker filled with ice, stir together the gin, campari, sweet vermouth and bitters. Juice your orange and strain the pulp from it, then add it to the gin mixture. Stir again, then pour into 6 coupe glasses. Top with seltzer and serve. You may also bottle these drinks to bring to a party, adding seltzer when serving.


9 Responses

  1. I’ve been reading this blog for long time, now, and have sort of thought of you of the cooler, citified version of myself. Your description of your social anxiety is the closest I’ve ever come to seeing my own thoughts in print. Thank you for being honest. Also, I’m a few years older than you and will say that things have gotten easier with age for me. I hope they will for you, too.

  2. Looove the colour of this punch! so pretty!

  3. Kelsi says:

    I, too, thought you were very cool and calm – I mean, obviously you’re cool. It is really quite incredible how well anxious people can hide their anxiety, and thus, how many people with anxiety we are unaware of; it is unfortunately far too common. I was struck hard with anxiety in my first year of university, which came out in a physical form – tingling on the top of my head. I didn’t even know that I had anxiety until then. It was a long time coming, but I finally have learned how to recognize when I’m feeling anxious and simple things to take my mind off of it. Finding something you love (which for me, too, is cooking and baking) is a really great treatment for anxiety and depression, I feel.
    By the way – I have totally done the compulsive pulse-checking too! Funny.

  4. Kimberly says:

    I literally just made a blood orange cocktail tonight. This sounds so good, though! I may have to try another. :)

  5. […] got a lot of interesting responses to my last post, be it concern for my well being, insistence that a food blog isn’t the right platform for […]

  6. Sydney says:

    1. This cocktail sounds divine and easy, my favourite combination 2. Girl you are sooooo not alone with the anxiety thing. It’s tough. It sucks. It sounds like you’re dealing with it in a way that works for you, so keep at it. All the rest of us will be there with you thinking our mile a minute thoughts!

  7. […] drink! Sydney has this blood orange punch that’s beautiful. Almost as beautiful as your […]

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