- by Selena Ricks
This January, I took an extended break from drinking since it's a slow month for events - not to mention the season to recharge one's mental and physical batteries. Temperance is a dirty word for most cocktail enthusiasts, but for me, the health benefits of abstaining from alcohol for a few weeks were obvious. After just a week off the sauce, I had a slimmer waist and clearer skin, and that was without making any other drastic changes to my diet or exercise routine.
Well, events have since picked up again - a rye whiskey tasting here, a new vodka launch there - and I can already feel my waistline expanding again. The problem with most cocktails is that they are loaded with sugar - Pina Coladas, as delicious as they are, have about 500 calories, or the equivalent of a cheeseburger. Will I stop drinking them completely? Highly unlikely, given the current tiki craze, but this got me wondering which cocktails are low in calories. I was pleasantly surprised to find that a number of drinks I already enjoy are on the skinny side, and they don't call for sugar substitutes or diet soda:Gin and tonic: 103 calories
Mix with ice in a rocks glass.St. Germain Cocktail: Less than 200 calories
Stir ingredients in an ice filled glass, pour into a champagne flute and garnish with a lemon twist.Mojito: 160 calories
In a cocktail shaker gently muddle mint with sugar; add lime juice, rum and ice. Shake and strain into an ice-filled rocks glass, top with soda and garnish with additional mint.Bloody Mary: 130 calories
Mix vodka, tomato juice, lemon juice, sauces and seasonings; stir or shake well to combine. Add a small amount of horseradish if desired. Pour over ice into a serving glass, and garnish your drink with a lemon wedge or a stalk of celery.Margarita: 165 calories
Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well and pour into a rocks glass. Garnish with a lime wheel.Gin Martini: 130 calories
In a cocktail shaker, combine gin, vermouth and plenty of ice. Shake well to chill the alcohol until you notice condensation on the shaker. Strain the drink into a martini glass, and add your choice of garnish.