It’s fair to say that almost any cocktail will be refreshing and thirst quenching in the hot summer months. Whether you are grilling, hanging out on the beach, or enjoying a patio, some combinations of ingredients do a better job than others.
Sweet and fruity drinks are the most popular this time of year, and for good reason. They have a light and refreshing quality that is desired when the mercury is above 80…. much more so than heavier and darker libations. That goes for beer, too. Lighter beers will do more for your thirst than their darker, bolder cousins.
Here are six sure-fire cocktails that will be sure to please anyone this summer:
1. Margarita – The components of a classic margarita are tequila, triple sec, and fresh lime juice. How you mix them is the difference between a good drink and a bad one. Here’s how to do it right:
1 ½ oz. tequila (100% agave tequila preferred)
1 ½ oz. triple sec or Cointreau
1 ¼ oz. of lime juice
Salt for the rim of the glass
Shake all the ingredients with cracked ice in a cocktail shaker until the exterior frosts. Strain into a glass over rocks in a cocktail glass, and use a slice of lime for garnish.
2. Mojito – The Mojito is another very popular summer drink, which relies on the mint for an extra punch of flavor. Be careful with these, as a few of these will catch up to you quickly.
2 mint sprigs, divided
¼ cup white rum
2 tablespoons simple syrup
1 tablespoon + ¾ tsp. lime juice
1 dash Angostura bitters
Muddle one mint sprig in a cocktail shaker. Add rum, simple syrup, lime juice, and bitters. Fill with ice, cover, and shake for 10 seconds. Strain into an old fashion glass. Garnish with remaining mint sprig.
3. French 75 – Rather high-brow for a summer time cocktail, the French 75 is one of the most famous champagne and liquor cocktails. Very refreshing with a great aftertaste, these are perfect for a pre-dinner drink. Ladies love them. This recipe makes two:
2 ounces of gin
1 tsp. superfine sugar
½ oz. lemon juice
5 oz. Brut champagne
Add the gin, sugar, and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker over ice. Shake well. Strain into a Collins glass half full of cracked ice, and top off with champagne.
4. Sangria – The ultimate back porch drink. Sangria is served out of a pitcher to all the partygoers. It’s a delicious, fruity drink that goes best with sunshine and a good attitude. If you forget the good attitude, a couple of these will set you right.
1 (750ml) bottle red wine
¼ cup brandy
¼ cup orange flavored liqueur (triple sec or Grand Marnier)
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
2 tbsp fresh orange juice
¼ cup sugar
½ orange, thinly sliced
½ lemon, thinly sliced
1 unwaxed apple, cored, and cut into thin wedges
1 (750ml) bottle of chilled sparkling water
Combine everything but the sparkling water in a large glass pitcher. Cover and chill completely, which will take about one to two hours. Add the sparkling water when you are ready to serve.
5. Gin & Tonic – There is nothing cooler than a G&T, especially during the summertime. The beauty is in the simplicity: three ingredients make one of the finest drinks ever concocted. They go down easy, and they taste great. A crowd pleaser.
3 oz. of good gin
4 oz. of good tonic water
2 lime wedges
Fill a Collins glass with ice. Add the gin, then the tonic water, and the juice of one of the lime wedges. Stir well. Garnish with the second lime wedge, and serve immediately.
6. Transfusion- This cocktail was created on the golf course and is our founder, TJ Callaway's favorite summer cocktail.
3 oz. vodka
2 oz. grape juice
2 oz. ginger ale
Combine all ingredients with crushed ice and add a squeeze of lime.
Cheers, Onward Reserve Gazette readers! What are you drinking this summer?