One day when I was browsing some of the bygone cocktail recipes in my Savoy cocktail book I found one or two that I wanted to try, but was discouraged by a certain ingredient: grenadine. All the commercial versions of this syrup that I’ve ever tried are too high-fructose-corn-syrupy artificial and I could never bring myself to use them in cocktails for my friends or family.
Grenadine is, in theory, made from pomegranate. Well pomegranate is an unwieldy fruit – unless you have an industrial juicer, getting the good stuff out of that seedy globe would be overly daunting. Luckily pomegranate juice is now available in a bottle, which means that making your own grenadine at home is quite easy. POM is a good option; Odwalla offers one that is pomegranate with a little berry juice added.
I found a couple of helpful posts on this topic, such as this one at the Cocktail Chronicles. The recipe that worked best for me is as follows:
Pour 2 cups of pomegranate juice into a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and let simmer until reduced by half (about 20 minutes). Slowly stir in 1 cup of sugar. Remove from heat and let cool completely. Transfer to a sealed container and refrigerate. Now this is true, deep-red grenadine syrup, and it makes a lovely clover club cocktail. You may choose to temper the flavor a bit by adding some simple syrup.
You can also try a cold process – simply combine equal parts juice and sugar. I found the syrup produced by this method to be too bright and assertive, but you may very well prefer it.