8+ Summer cocktails to try

by: Tierney Pomone
May 31, 2013

Well hello summer weather and a nice 90 degree day! What better way to cool down and unwind on a hot day than with a cool refreshing summer cocktail. Whether your drink of choice is something sweet or more traditional, summer offers a variety of seasonal flavors perfect for happy hours and parties. 

tierney cocktailLooking for a fun party drink? This summer, think fizzy with champagne or club soda for a little added flair.

One of my favorite summer flavors is mango, so this Mango-Peach Fizz recipe sounds delightful. All you need is some pureed mangos and peaches, fruit juice and champagne. Brunch anyone? Also, check out this recipe for Sparkling Pomegranate Punch. It’s a little bit like sangria but with a champagne pizzazz.

Speaking of sangria, is there anything more quintessential when lounging poolside? There are many different ways to make sangria based on your individual taste, but classic sangria can be made with red wine, brandy, orange or lemon wedges and a little bit of sugar. I find this to be a little bit heavy myself so I usually opt for a lighter peach sangria. I use chilled white wine instead of red, peach vodka, and sliced peaches and grapes in my pitcher.

cucumber martini

Homemade cucumber martini.

Not every drink needs to be a sweet fruit-based cocktail. There are plenty of savory summer flavors as well. My favorite summer cocktail is the cucumber martini. It’s incredibly crisp and refreshing with just a hint of natural sweetness and the ideal patio beverage. You can start with Skinnygirl Cucumber Vodka and just add some dry vermouth, or you can start with gin and make your own cucumber juice to mix. Garnish with a few slices of cucumber of course and relax.

Bored with the traditional margarita? Opt for an Orange Ginger Margarita instead. Once again avoiding the overly sweet summer flavors, this recipe focuses more on the balance between the subtle sweetness of orange and the zest of ginger. All you need is orange juice, freshly grated ginger, tequila, Cointreau and lime. You can also substitute ginger beer for some more of the fizzy fun or blood orange juice for a different flavor.

The biggest cocktail trend you’ll see this summer isn’t a trend at all, but more of a revival. Classic cocktails are making a comeback in a major way. Expect to see modern twists on the Manhattan, Old Fashioned, Mint Juleps and more.

I recently visited the Garlic Poet in New Cumberland and was very excited to see their ‘New’ Old Fashioned featuring vanilla simple syrup, Tuaca vanilla-citrus liquor, bourbon and a few cherries.

Other bars like The Sturges Speakeasy and the have an entire section of their drink menu devoted to the classic cocktail. We love the “High Class Hooker,” which is an update of the Manhattan, but featuring Hooker House Rye Whisky, Lavender Bitters and Hibiscus liqueur.

Some things just never go out of style and these cocktails are no exception. Want more modernized Prohibition-era cocktails? Hit up The Circular in Hershey!

Impress your summer picnic guests with a modern twist on the French 75 – a drink celebrating nearly 100 years of existence. All you’ll need is some gin, lemon juice, sugar and champagne. It’s almost like an adult lemonade so feel free to make it your own using cherries, strawberries or blueberries.

For more fun drink suggestions, check out Sara’s post on 2013 cocktail trends.

Pennsylvania Fine Wine & Good Spirits stores also offer recipes for Simple Summer Sippers.

What will you be sipping on this summer?

Categories: Food/Drink

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