5 Summer Cocktails

THAT WILL HAVE YOUR GUESTS REFRESHED AND IMPRESSED

Photography by Tiffani Jones

Summer is upon us, friends. Why not beat the heat, gather your favorite humans, and treat yourselves a bit?

For me, quality time with my friends and family is my most prized gift. When I entertain, there must be the perfect balance of thoughtfulness and simplicity … more time to soak in the sun (and the love) and less time working in the kitchen or standing behind the bar.

When I entertain, there must be the perfect balance of thoughtfulness and simplicity

Here are a few of my favorite summery cocktails that are exactly that — fresh, fruity, and super simple to make. Party time, excellent!

Spiked Watermelon, Ginger, & Lime Fresca

What’s better than a perfect, sweet watermelon in a cup? Ginger gives this cocktail such a nice kick!

1 seedless watermelon

2 knuckles of ginger, peeled

The juice of 3 limes

2 ounces of vodka per cocktail

Blend the watermelon and fine strain. Set aside.

Blend the lime juice and peeled ginger. Fine strain into the watermelon juice. (Side note: this juice can be prepared a day in advance.)

This juice is wonderful without the booze, but it’s great with vodka too!

Add ice and vodka to a glass. Top with fresca. Stir.

Pog Mojito

POG MOJITO

Canned fruit juices make this cocktail super easy to execute. The addition of fresh mint and lime give it the perfect freshness.

2 ounces passion fruit juice

1 ounce guava juice

2 ounces white rum

6 leaves fresh mint

1 blood orange wheel

2 ounces sparkling water

Muddle mint and blood orange in a Collins glass. Add juice, rum, and a scoop of ice.

Top with sparkling water. Stir.

Fresh Pineapple & Ginger Beer Brew

(makes 4 cocktails)

Blended drinks aren’t my usual go to, but this one is an exception. Oddly enough, as the drink melts, it gets even better.

3 cups fresh pineapple

1 scoop crushed ice

4 ounces rum

1/2 cup ginger beer per cocktail

Using a blender, blend pineapple and ice. Add the rum. Fill glasses 3/4 full and top with ginger beer.

Jasmine & Lychee Spiked Iced Tea

The combo of lychee, jasmine flower, and gin is magical. This drink is simple yet so sophisticated and complex in flavor.

1/2 ounce lychee juice, from the can

1 ounce brewed and cooled jasmine tea

1 ounce gin

3 canned lychees

Add lychee juice, jasmine tea, gin, and a scoop of ice to a shaker. Shake or stir, and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with 3 lychee.

Spiked Sparkling Rosemary Lemonade

(makes 1 pitcher)

There’s just something so sweet about an ice-cold pitcher of fresh-squeezed lemonade. Add a little booze and you have something summery and special. It touches the kiddo in all of us.

2 – 12-ounce bottles sparkling water

3 1/2 ounces simple syrup

1 1/2 cups fresh-squeezed lemon juice

3 ounces vodka

1 lemon cut into wheels

4 sprigs rosemary

Add a couple of big scoops of ice to a pitcher. Add sparking water, simple syrup, lemon juice, and vodka. Give it a nice stir. Garnish with fresh lemon wheels and fresh rosemary.