Updated: Jul 23, 2020
A trio of hot weather bevvies
Our love of cool summer cocktails started with Miami pool parties. After a week of long-distance travel, relaxing poolside with a nice cocktail over the weekend became a welcome reset.
We were also fortunate to have a number of friends that shared that philosophy, and this helped us build a great repertoire of summer bevvies.
A favorite is a blender slushie that is a bit involved, but has some fantastic flavors that contribute to chilling poolside, or simply on the patio. This icy cocktail of vodka, lemon and ginger starts with a ginger syrup that is pureed in the blender, strained, poured in a glass dish and combined with lemon zest and juice. The mixture is then covered and placed in the freezer for 5 hours.
When you are ready to serve up the bevvies, remove the mixture from the freezer, let stand at room temperature for a few minutes, chop up half the mixture and return to the blender with 4 cups of ice and 1 cup of vodka. Garnish with mint.
As an alternative, blend the mint into the final mixture for a different concoction.
We lived in Spain for six years and love sangria. Many a Sunday afternoon was spent in the outdoor cafes of Barcelona or Madrid with tapas and pitchers of sangria. For us, the easiest and most refreshing version of this during hot summer months here in the U.S. is a batch of white sangria. Using the white wine makes this bevvie a bit lighter for summer sipping, and involves mixing the wine in a pitcher with gin, fresh (or frozen) fruits and your choice of a name-brand lemon-lime soda or ginger ale. Our preference is an Italian flavored sparkling soda (lemonade, preferably). The mixture is then poured over a high ball glass filled with ice.
We love watermelon juice in everything this time of year – breakfast smoothies, homemade sparkling soda and, again, adult bevvies! A current backyard favorite among our neighbors is a cocktail that begins with muddling lemon slices and mint in a cocktail shaker, adding a dash of honey or maple syrup and adding to the shaker a cup of strained watermelon juice and ½ cup of gin. This mixture is shaken vigorously for a minute and then poured 'straight up' from the shaker into a rocks glass.