Cherry Citrus-Ade

Summer Cherry Sours & Cherry Citrus-Ade


For information on how to make your own Chalkboard Mason Jar Glasses, scroll to the bottom.

Despite my best intentions, the reputation I garnered while in college was not exactly something I was aiming for. While I sat on numerous student org executive boards, chaired countless committees, was the sole student on the Faculty IT council, and even started the first fraternity for gay, bisexual and progressive men in Texas, my 15 minutes stemmed from a measure of success only college kids would find important and impressive. I became known for my house parties.

It did not take long for me to learn that spending 15 hours a day on campus going to class, studying, organizing protests, pushing for student’s rights, working and trying to change something – anything –  left me – and many other student leaders – with a strong desire to let off steam. We did this the only way college students knew how to, with copious amounts of alcohol. I happened to have a 2,000 sq ft. house just blocks away from campus and a penchant for making deliciously strong drinks so it didn’t take long for my house to become the preferred party spot.

I met and made best friends, fell in love once or twice, hooked up too many times to admit, fended off nosey cops, cared for sick friends, learned a few bar tricks, and made a lot of drinks at these house parties. I danced like a maniac. I blew out numerous sound systems. I got my shy friends to dance like maniacs. I shared new years kisses under the mist of exploding champagne bottles, and exchanged halloween costumes with girlfriends half way through the night. I may have set off fireworks inside for the Fourth of July. I rambled on about nothing and listened to friends do the same thing. I got in fights with best friends; I made up with best friends a few minutes later. I concocted the best damn punch that campus had seen in years and filled up numerous coolers with it every time I had a party.

Most of my inebriated evening was spent trying to meet these strangers hanging out in my house though. To the irritation of my close friends who just wanted to hang out in my room – a makeshift VIP room where the really good alcohol was kept and the really raunchy games were played -, I made my rounds, making sure every guest had a full glass and was having a blast. I hugged a lot of tipsy strangers, asked where they were from and what they were studying. I said, thanks for coming out, y’all,” a lot and, “I’m glad you’re having fun,” even more. And once I even got in a fist fight with two guys who were trying to steal our beer – you don’t steal a Texan’s beer.

There is a sense of joy and pride that comes from hosting a get together. My favorite part was always watching two strangers become friends.

Oh and the cocktails.

Because I honestly like juice as much as I do a nice stiff cocktail, I’ve decided to share two recipes. One is the kid friendly Cherry Citrus-Ade, the other is the adult-only Summer Cherry Sour. Oh and I got all crafty and made some chalk-board mason jar glasses. Guess what? I’m going to teach you how to make them too!

Summer Cherry Sours: While whiskey is distilled from grains and brandy is distilled from fruit, both have a flavor profile that I believe pair well together, especially in a drink like this containing sweet and tart/sour fruits.

Take care to note when mixing the Cherry Citrus-Ade to use as a cocktail mixer in the Summer Cherry Sours, you skip the step where you add water.


Summer Cherry Sours

Yield: 4, 4 fluid ounce cocktails
Time: 2 minutes


4 Mason Jar Glasses (instructions below)
Cocktail shaker


12 ounces (1 1/2 cup) Cherry Citrus-Ade (recipe below)
2 fluid ounces good brandy
2 fluid ounces good whiskey


1. Pour the ingredients in a cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously for a few seconds.

2. Pour the cocktail over ice into 4, 8 ounce mason jar glasses (or into old fashioned glasses).


Cherry Citrus-Ade: I suggest buying sweet cherries for this recipe though you can use any variety of your choosing. Muddling the cherries helps get their juices into the drink. This will be a pulpy drink.


Cherry Citrus-Ade

Yield: 1 quart Cherry-Citrus-Ade
Time: 10 minutes


4, 8 oz Mason Jar Glasses (instructions below)
1 quart pitcher
Citrus reamer
Paring knife


12 ounces cherries, pitted
2 fluid ounces simple syrup*
2 fluid ounces lemon juice
2 fluid ounces lime juice
1/2 cup grapefruit juice

12 ounces water (do not add this ingredient if making a cocktail mix)


1. Add the cherries and the simple syrup to the pitcher. Muddle the cherries until they are broken apart.

2. Add the lemon juice, lime juice and grape fruit juice. Mix well. If you are making Cherry Citrus-Ade as a cocktail mix then skip step three.

3. If you are making Cherry Citrus-Ade to drink on its own add the 12 ounces water and mix well.

4. Serve over ice or on its own.


Mason Jar Glasses: So long as you don’t have a penchant for amputating appendages when you use power tools, these glasses are incredibly easy to make. This can be done with any size mason jar. If you plan to paint a portion of the glass (in addition to the lid) make sure you choose mason jars with a smooth glass side.

Take care when attempting this project as the metal can become very sharp while drilling and filing the straw hole. Be sure to remove all filings or bits of metal that may still be attached to the lid before drinking from the jars.


Chalkboard Mason Jar Glasses

Yield: 12 Mason Jar Glasses
Project Time:
1 hour
Drying Time: 12-24 hours

Power drill
5/16th inch metal drill bit
Needle nose pliers or metal shears
Metal file
X-acto knife
Masking tape

12 Mason Jars, any size
Black chalkboard spray paint
Striped paper straws
1.  Separate the pieces of each mason jar. Lay the lids on a flat, thick piece of wood (one you don’t mind drilling into). Using care, hold the edges of the lid to keep the lid from spinning around (you may also use a clamp here), and drill into the center of each lid. Drill at a moderate speed as drilling too fast or too slow may cause the edges of the straw hole to be uneven.

2.If there are any pieces of metal hanging on to the lid, use needle nose pliers or metal shears to remove them.

3. Using a thin, small metal file, file the edges of the straw hole from the top to smooth out any rough or sharp edges.

4. If you plan to paint a portion of the jar, tape the entire jar (including the top to keep paint from getting to the inside) and use an x-acto knife to remove tape in the shape of the area to be painted.

5. In a well ventilated area, preferably outside on a dry day, lay all the pieces out on newspaper or a tarp. Spray a thin layer of paint completely covering the tops of both lid pieces, and the expose glass on the jars. If necessary repeat and apply a second coat.*

6. Leave the painted pieces out to dry overnight.*

7. Wash all the pieces by hand with mildly soapy water. Hand dry and assemble.

*Always follow the instructions on the paint can. When using spray paint, it is best to move the can and nozzle from side to side, painting in horizontal stripes. Take care not spray paint in one are too long as it may run.



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AUTHOR - Russell van Kraayenburg

Food nerd. Cookbook author. Founder of Chasing Delicious. Pastry cook at Fluff Bake Bar. Lover of hot dogs. Russell van Kraayenburg founded Chasing Delicious in 2010 and has been chasing delicious recipes ever since. Russell is author of the cookbooks Haute Dogs and Making Dough.


  • Jennifer

    What an adorable idea for a summer outdoor party! You’re soooo creative :)

  • Emily

    This looks incredibly refreshing. It’s so hot in Georgia right now, and my mouth is watering just looking at the pictures!

  • Natasha

    Perfect! I just so happen to have leftover chalkboard paint from a recent chalkboard-making-craft situation and whole mess of mason jars from a mason-jar-old-fashioneds-birthday situation. Looks like I now have something to do with them.

  • Dominick

    I am definitely making this drink! It sounds delicious. This explains why you were tipsy in the morning in twitter lol
    Btw your college life sounds like mine minus the fact you had a house and not an apartment to throw house parties in :P

  • Isabelle @ Crumb

    I wish there had been epic house parties like yours when I went to school, though given how much it costs to rent in downtown Toronto, few of us could afford a 200 sq ft room… let alone a 2000 sq ft house. We threw our fair share of little house parties in our small residence complex, though. :)
    Love, love, LOVE the chalkboard mason jar glasses. Love the fact that they’re filled with delicious cherry-flavoured booze even more.
    PS: I’m still waiting for my limes. Sniff.

  • Connie Gordon

    Sounds like fun times in college. Ugh my liver…I had some similar memories of college. Absolutely love the mason jar glasses. I have some of that paint on chalk board stuff and now I know how to put it to use. Fantastic post.

  • Brian @ A Thought For Food

    A) It’s official. You have too much time on your hands.

    B) We would have gotten into so much trouble if we had gone to the same school.

    C) Love these. ;-)

  • Emily

    Great idea with the glasses, I’ll have to remember that the next time we have a party!

  • elissa

    holy smokes! i <3 you and want to come party down with you, like right now. also using a drill is classier/safer than stabbing a hole with kitchen scissors, you're a smarty too. xx

  • Kathryn

    I think I would have liked your parties very much.

  • Eileen

    OH my. I definitely wouldn’t mind drinking some of my summer cherries instead of just eating them all out of hand! Love it!

  • thelittleloaf

    Being known for your house parties is an awesome accolade! There’s nothing better than a man who knows how to make a good cocktail, and yours look fantastic! ;-)

  • Dee at Deelicious Sweets

    I want to be your friend.

  • Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar

    Yes please! This is so great for summer grill nights (or any night) (or right now)…love it!

  • Meki

    This looks refreshing and perfect!

  • thyme (Sarah)

    Must tell daughter…stay away from anyone named…Russell…or Chasing…or Delicious!! Ha! Ha! Just kidding. What a college track record. And your drinks are soooooo…cute! Cute, cute, cute…I want to make the jars.

  • Reem | Simply Reem

    How Adorable!!!
    perfect idea for summer parties…
    I love ur tutorial …

  • sarah

    I loved this post. Sadly, I had quite the opposite college experience – no drinking period. Maybe I need to go to one of these parties now? But then I might just be the creepy mom no one wants to talk to.

  • Gary

    Beautiful post. I love the straws. Great touch.

  • shelly (cookies and cups)

    Such a great idea and yummy drink!

  • Katie

    I’ve loved whiskey sours since I was in college. I like cherry. I will have to try this.

  • Ashley Bee @ Quarter Life (Crisis) Cuisine

    Aw, I used to have epic houseparties too! I miss them ever so much. Now I want to have classy dinner parties! Hehe. These jars are absolutely adorable. I NEED to make them!

  • Amy @ fragrantvanillacake

    Haha…awesome! I can see why everyone wanted to be at your parties with fabulous drinks like these! The cherry sour sounds so refreshing, delicious and boozy! Love it!

  • kitchenriffs

    Interesting cocktail – you don’t often see brandy and whiskey paired together. But it sounds like a fun drink! I’ll definitely have to give it a try. Thanks.

  • Jacqueline @How to be a Gourmand

    There’s nothing wrong with holding great parties. I’m sure your guests have great memories :-)
    What a wonderful cocktail idea!

  • RavieNomNoms

    So much fun! What a great idea for a party. I love hosting parties. It is always so nice to see your friends having such a nice time!

  • Jeanette

    What a fun idea – love those chalkboard mason jars!

  • Jennie @themessybakerblog

    1. It’s too bad I didn’t know you in college. You sounded like a hoot. 2. Um, Yum x2. 3. Those are the coolest jars ever! 4. I love your chalkboard drawing skills.

  • christina @ ovenadventures

    i love everything about this post. the story, the pictures and the set up of the tutorial. if i ever get to Texas I want a party. lol

  • Alison @ Ingredients, Inc.

    fabulous idea! Happy weekend

  • Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen

    You’re making nostalgic for those college days where we embraced life with a carefree spirit and open arms!

  • Jennifer (Delicieux)

    Sounds like you had an absolute blast at college! I love the sound of your cherry sours. I’d love one right now in fact!

  • Sommer@ASpicyPerspective

    OMG. …I usually don’t use “omg” but this is deserving. Love the recipe and, cute and brilliant shaker idea and the story of your ruffian days. ;)

  • CJ at Food Stories

    Thx for connecting with me on foodbuzz. I just subscribed to your blog feed and can’t wait to see what your next post will be!

  • Riley

    These are the cutest glasses! These look delicious!

  • JulieD

    I’ll take two of these drinks! Love to hear that you were the center of the party…just like today! :)

  • Karen @ superfinefeline

    This is such a cool post with awesome writing and kick-a** photography as always! The mason jars are so cute. Can’t wait to read your next post.

  • Anita at Hungry Couple

    What a fun post, in every way! :)

  • naomi

    Love this drink and rightfully so that you would be famous in college for such achievements. Drinking is the center of college life outside of the classroom, right?

  • Jen @ Savory Simple

    Those mason jars are so great!

  • Liren

    Love it! The sneak peek into your college party life – I can just imagine! Were you this crafty back then, too? Those mason jars are perfect!

  • Jen @ Jen's Favorite Cookies

    This looks like a fun summer day. I actually love a fruity beverage in a mason jar!! (I usually use the larger jars!)

  • Becs @ Lay the table

    Ah love your story. We had a party house which was my best friends house – they used to run music nights so had the best speaker setup and all my friends were great dj’s. The neighbours didn’t like us much – one even set off tear gas in the hallway so we all had to evacuate. Good times I will never forget for my whole lifetime though!

  • Chris and Amy

    How very clever those chalkboard jars are! And the drinks sound perfect for summertime.

  • Winnie

    Awesomeness all around Russell. I really love reading your posts.

  • Ivan

    If you were to run the pitted cherries through a juicer would that filter some of the pulp and get better cherry juice?

  • Michael Toa

    What a great post Russell. I always enjoy reading your stories. I am sure you are an amazing host to all of your parties. And who could resist such cocktails? not me! :)

  • Ilan (IronWhisk Blog)

    I love the chalkboard idea!

  • shelly (cookies and cups)

    I want one of each. Well, maybe two of one and one of the other.

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