When the summer heat strikes, sometimes having that perfect cocktail in hand is all you need to make it feel like you’re on vacation—even if you’re just sitting in your own living room or sun room. Summer drinks make the evening feel festive and exciting, and they give you some options beyond the clichéd summer beers—like IPAs. Get creative this year with the following cocktails, and you’ll enjoy every last sip from June to September.
1. The Sparkling Ginger Margarita
This is a neat twist on a classic. This drink contains chopped ginger slices, lime leaves, tequila, lime juice, triple sec, sparkling wine and ginger agave syrup. The ginger gives this drink a nice little edge, while doubling up on the lime ensures that it’s going to taste fresh and tropical. Adding the sparking wine makes it bubble and taste refreshing, which is great on a hot day.
2. The Hemingway Daiquiri
The daiquiri was one of Hemingway’s favorite drinks when he was living in Key West and in Cuba, as he wrote some of the most iconic novels of his career. He’d often drink them at his home in Key West, on his boat—Pilar—and while he was out fishing. To channel your sense of travel and adventure, two things that Hemingway loved, you just mix 3.75 ounces of white rum, six drops of maraschino liqueur, juice of from half of a grapefruit, and juice from two limes. Do not add any sugar. This drink has also often been called the Papa Doble, as Hemingway’s nickname was Papa.
3. The Gin Gin Mule
You’ve probably heard of the Moscow Mule, which, as the name suggests, is made with vodka. However, many people think that the taste of gin works well in summer drinks, with the very simple gin and tonic being a staple. If you’re not looking for vodka and would prefer gin, you’ll be glad that the Idlewyld Inn—which is found in London, Ontario—came up with this variation. Along with the gin, it contains fresh lime juice, ginger beer, simple syrup and mint. It’s made by shaking the mix until the glass cools, and then it can be strained into a glass with ice. That’s when the mint is added on top, as a garnish. Cooling it is important, as the simple syrup is heated. That’s the last thing you want on a hot summer day, but the taste—and temperature—is perfect after it’s cooled off. This is a good drink for those who love gin and tonics but want to venture out and try something new, while still sticking to the familiar things that they know they like.
4. The Summer in the City
This one has you right from the name. Summer in the city can be hot and long, but sitting by the window or on the rooftop and watching the cars go by with the right drink in your hand can be very relaxing. This drink is simple and delicious, so it’s great for those days when you get home on Friday, the work week behind you, and you just need to kick your feet up. It contains half of a watermelon, Aperol, vodka, basil leaves, and prosecco. The watermelon is pureed, making the base of the drink, but the basil flavor is very notable. It’s usually served with ice. For a lot of people, there is nothing more iconically linked to summer than the sweet taste of fresh watermelon, so you can think of this drink as a way for adults to capture that childhood spirit. It’s also a healthy option that is still sweet and good, as you’re just eating natural sugars. This drink is hard to beat.
5. Quat’s the Weather?
If you’ve had a dark and stormy, you know how delicious they can be. The ‘quat’s the weather’ is just a play on that recipe, taking things up a notch and giving you a drink that is fun and unique. It contains three kumquats (hence the name), one and a half ounces of rhum agricole, orange bitters, and mint. The whole thing is topped off with either regular wheat beer or hopped wheat beer. This is a great drink for those who love more traditional style beers—rather than the ginger beer that is in a dark and stormy—as it works in those flavors. It’s worth noting that sugar cane juice is used to make rhum agricole. It’s a very good rum, for those who are unfamiliar, and makes the drink that much more exciting and exotic.
Be Creative This Summer
Don’t settle into a pattern with all of the same old drinks. Embrace the new, creative options, and you’ll find there are far more cocktails out there than you realized. This can be a summer for exploration and drinks that beat the heat, so next time you find yourself out on the town and needing a quiet respite from the sun, check out Tin Lizzie Lounge, located within easy walking distance of Seattle Center and the Space Needle!