Spring has filled me with a sense of possibilities–the possibilities of cocktails. The time change makes lingering summer evenings seem very close, and while a gin and tonic is the drink of choice for hot weather, I’ve been happily trying out other suitable warmer-weather, pre-dinner drinks. (Ideally, of course, I would try these out in a cafe that I could walk to after work, maybe meeting friends there. I’d order a different aperitif a day from the menu to find my favorites, and then go home and eat something delicious, probably involving seafood.)

Sadly, there are no Parisian cafes in Salt Lake, so I’ve been doing my aperitif experimentation at home. My favorites so far are loosely based on white wine–a far cry from the reds I sucked down all winter just to keep warm–and are probably the French equivalent of a wine cooler. But dammit, they’re tasty.

There’s Lillet blanc with a lime slice, which is useful if one already has lime on hand for those drinkers who have no problem drinking gin and tonics out of season. (The link is to the Wikipedia page for Lillet, not the official site, because Lillet.com resizes your browser window automatically and I hate that with the firey hatred of a thouasnd white-hot suns.)

But my new favorite