Strawberry Champagne Punch

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This delicious punch will be a real hit at your backyard party.  I’ve also served it during the Holidays as it’s a beautiful festive color.  The mixture of the champagne and the carbonation of the ginger ale give it a nice bubbly texture and it’s just the right balance of sweetness.  The frozen berries act as ice cubes and are really yummy to eat after they’ve soaked up the punch.  And ladies, it’s a low calorie, guilt free cocktail so drink up!

Now, lets talk ginger ale for a moment.  If you live in Michigan you know about Vernors.  It is an absolutely delicious, super carbonated ginger ale.  It was first served to the public in 1866.  There’s quite a history behind this refreshing beverage as well.  It was created by a highly respected Detroit pharmacist named James Vernor.  Mr. Vernor also ran a soda shop.  He had been working on a medical tonic of vanilla, spices and ginger to calm the stomach.  He had it stored in an oak cask when he was sent to fight in the Civil War in 1862.  When he returned from the war and opened the cask he was amazed at the delicious flavor of the drink that had been enhanced by the oak’s aging process.  Vernor began serving it in his soda shop and as demand grew for the product, it  began being served throughout the Midwest.  A plant was opened in Detroit so that Vernors could be mass produced.  Vernors was growing as the city of Detroit grew.  A large sign with the company’s logo was placed on the Detroit River in the 1940’s where the ferries passed by taking passengers to Windsor, Bob-lo Island and Belle Isle.  A shop opened on the Detroit River where customers could watch Vernors being produced while they enjoyed drinking the soda.

Vernors has long been used as a stomach ache cure given its high carbonation and ginger flavor.  It has even been mixed with fresh lemon juice and served warm as a cough and sore throat relief.

The Boston cooler is a dessert drink made with Vernors and named after a boulevard in Detroit where it was reportedly first served.  It is made by placing scoops of vanilla ice cream into a tall glass and pouring Vernors over the ice cream.

Vernors remains very popular in Michigan and surrounding areas today.  So much so in fact that I’ve known family and friends who have moved away and still have Vernors shipped to them to satisfy their craving for this delightful and unique soda.

Recently, Michigan 7-11 stores have even created a Vernors Slurpee!  I hear it’s delicious.  Oh thank Heaven for 7-11 keeping this delicious soda’s popularity alive and well.

(Information gathered from the Detroit Historical Society’s website at http://detroithistorical.org/learn/encyclopedia-of-detroit/vernors-ginger-ale)

Strawberry Champagne Punch
 
Author:
Recipe type: Punch Cocktail
Cuisine: Beverage
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 750 ml bottle of Moscato champagne
  • 2 liter bottle of Diet Vernors (or other brand of diet ginger ale)
  • 2 10 oz bags of frozen strawberries (or mixed berries)
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients into a punch bowl and mix well.

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