Plum wine — a sweet, light beverage traditionally made from rice wine or white alcohol — makes a fragrant and fruity addition to serve either alone or mixed in with other ingredients. This Japanese-inspired drink is much sweeter than wine made from grapes and a has a milder flavor. You can drink it over ice, or in any number of cocktails.


Plum Wine on the Rocks

Chill a tumbler or rocks glass in the freezer until frost forms around the outside of the glass.

Fill the tumbler half full of ice cubes.

Pour the wine liqueur until it meets the surface of the ice cubes.

Add water to dilute the wine according to taste. Water cuts the intense saccharin-like taste of the wine. Swirl the mixture in the glass before serving. This works best with plum wine liqueur with a higher alcohol content.


Plum Martini

Pour several ounces of the plum wine into a martini shaker and fill halfway with ice.

Add a couple ounces of vodka.

Cover the shaker with a shaker lid or a rocks glass. Shake vigorously for a minute or two.

Pour the mixture from the shaker into a chilled martini glass using a strainer or lid to allow the liquid to flow through but inhibit the large ice cubes. Ice crystals that have chipped of the ice cubes should float on top.


Plum Wine Cocktails

Fill a rocks glass three-fourths full with ice cubes.

Pour equal parts of plum wine and two or more mixers. Sparkling white wine adds fizz, while fruit juice gives you a tropical-tasting sweet drink. Club soda and sour mix dilute the alcohol content and temper the sweetness of plum wine.

Stir the ingredients with a spoon. Add a garnish of fruit, such as a lemon or a pineapple wedge, if you wish.


Tips

  • Warm the wine on cold days or use hot plum wine as a complement to cold dishes.

  • Mix drinks with juices or other nonalcoholic mixers thoroughly before serving. Alcohol floats on the top of liquids and can give a strong taste for the first sips of an unmixed cocktail.