While citrus soaks up most of the agricultural attention in Arizona, our melon game is pretty strong, too – particularly in the summer, when watermelons are harvested.
They also happen to match well with booze – a fact well-known to the mixologists of Bar Bianco, who have leveraged their melon love into a season-long cocktail special: the fruit-forward and fennel-tickled Watermelon Fizz.
Feeling fizzy? Muddle eight ½-inch cubes of watermelon flesh in a cocktail shaker and then pour in 1 oz. gin (go local and choose CaskWerks), ¼ oz. each of lemon and lime juice, and 1 ½ oz. fennel syrup*, and fill with ice. Shake and double-strain into a wine glass filled with ice, and top with dry Prosecco. Garnish with a sprig of mint and start mellowin’ with melon.
*To make: Roughly chop one medium to large bulb of fennel, and cover with 1 cup of sugar in a bowl. Let rest for one hour. Transfer to a pot and add 1 cup of water. Bring to a light boil, turn heat to low, and let simmer for 30 minutes. Strain out the solid fennel and let cool.
— Shelby Moore
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