Being in the beverage/cocktail/spirits business, I appreciate creative non-alcoholic cocktails that utilize fresh herbs, fruits, etc. Most establishments take the easy way out and simply offer sweet, syrupy messes to their guests when asked for a "n/a" beverage.
Here's a creative, sophisticated non-alcoholic libation from Portland, OR. And it can easlity be made into a cocktail with the addition of a nice gin (2 ounces). Cheers!
6 fresh tarragon leaves
1" slice of cucumber, cut into cubes
3/4 oz. fresh lime juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup
1 oz. double-brewed chamomile tea (chilled)
1/2 oz. Sparkling water
Tools: mixing glass, muddler, strainer
Garnish: sprig of tarragon
Place first two ingredients in a pint glass filled with ice. Muddle all three breaking up the cucumber and tarragon, and crushing the ice. Add simple syrup, lime juice and tea. Shake and fine strain (a tea strainer works well) into an ice-filled glass. Top with sparkling water and garnish.
Kelley Swenson, Ten-01, Portland, Ore.