If there’s anything better than an icy cold cocktail on a hot summer day, we don’t know what it is. A good summer beverage should be light, refreshing and flavourful without being overpowering to the senses. These contemporary cocktails are the perfect addition to any summertime activity whether it’s a lively backyard BBQ, a formal get-together with friends or a leisurely afternoon spent relaxing on a sun lounger.
Bright and citrusy with herbal undertones, this effervescent cocktail works well for parties and as a pre-dinner drink. (Serves 2)
4 oz Aperol
6 oz Prosecco
San Pellegrino Aranciata
Fill two wine glasses with ice. Pour 2 ounces of Aperol in each, followed by 3 ounces of Prosecco and top with a splash of the San Pellegrino Aranciata. Garnish each with a slice of orange.
Passion Fruit Mojito
The classic mojito gets a contemporary twist in this vibrant cocktail that makes use of fresh passion fruit and cooling mint leaves. (Serves 2)
4 oz rum
4 oz lime juice
2 tsp simple syrup
4 sprigs of mint
2 passion fruit halved
Squeeze the passion fruit juice and seeds into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Add all the ingredients except the soda and shake vigorously. Strain into highball glasses and top with a splash of soda.
Blackberry Bourbon Sour
Muddled blackberries add a touch of tartness and a rich hue to this sophisticated summertime cocktail. (Serves 2)
4 oz bourbon
2 oz lemon juice
2 tsp simple syrup
¼ cup fresh blackberries
Muddle the blackberries and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker. Add ice, bourbon and lemon juice. Shake vigorously and strain into two lowball glasses filled with ice. Garnish with fresh blackberries.
Watermelon Soju Punch
Similar to vodka, Korean soju kicks this thirst-quenching punch up a notch. Serve it in a punch bowl to show off the fabulous crimson color or in a hollowed out watermelon for extra wow factor. (Serves 8)
1 large watermelon
2 cups soju
Slice about 1 inch off the bottom of a watermelon to create a flat base. Cut about ⅓ off the other end and use a spoon to scoop out the flesh. Put the flesh in a blender or food processor and strain it into a bowl. Add the soju and mix well. Serve in the hollowed out watermelon or in a punch bowl with plenty of ice.
Elderflower Gin and Tonic
Nothing says summertime like a cool, crisp gin and tonic. This version features cucumber and elderflower cordial for a garden-fresh taste and aroma. (Serves 2)
2 oz gin
2 oz elderflower cordial
Fill two lowball glasses with ice. Add cucumber slices first, then equal parts gin and elderflower into each. Top with tonic water and garnish with cucumber slices.
The combination of white wine and summery fruits in this white sangria make for the perfect summertime patio drink. (Serves 2)
8 oz fruity white wine like Pinot Grigio or Chenin Blanc
1 oz Triple Sec
1 oz simple syrup
Sliced green apples, oranges, lemons and strawberries
Fill two large wine glasses halfway with ice. Add sliced fruits into each glass, then equally divide the white wine, triple sec and simple syrup into each glass. Stir with a cocktail spoon or swizzle stick. Garnish each with an orange slice.
Sparkling Peach Mocktail
This rift on the bellini is a classy non-alcoholic drink for all ages. It’s a great starter drink for a brunch or luncheon. (Serves 4)
4 oz peach nectar
Thirsty Buddha Sparkling Peach Mango Coconut Water
Fresh raspberries and sliced strawberries
Divide peach nectar into four champagne flutes. Top with peach mango sparkling coconut water. Garnish with fresh berries.