Summer goes hand-in-hand with fun, refreshing cocktails, and this season we're vowing to try a few new versions that we have our eye on. We'll be opting for recipes that make use of fresh seasonal fruit and herbs and stimulate our senses with interesting, unusual mixes that keep things interesting. And a pretty colour combination or some fancy garnishes don't hurt either - after all, we've always been swayed by good packaging! Last summer we had every intention of starting a little cocktail series, and even blogged our delicious Sparkling Tarragon Lemonade that we served up at a little staff meeting, so we've promised to continue with that this year, and make it more of a regular challenge.
We're looking forward to evenings that begin (or end!) with a tasty cocktail in hand, and this summer we want to get a little more creative with it. It's the perfect excuse to finally finish stocking and styling that bar cart, spend some time decorating the patio and creating that little city oasis we've been dreaming about for months now. We've put together a little list of 10 summer cocktails to try, so pick your favourite and plan a night with the girls!
Toasted Coconut Vanilla Limeade // Two of our favourite summer flavours, together at last! We love the contrast of the zesty lime with creamy coconut. Perfect for sipping while pretending you're on that tropical vacation you've been dreaming about. This one's non-alcoholic, but if you're desperate for something a little stronger, there are definitely ways to remedy that.
Sangria Swirled Frozen Margaritas // You'll notice that the list includes a number of margarita versions (it is a favourite classic, after all), and the sangria twist on this frozen version has us intrigued. Plus, we're firm believers that the colour of a drink is definitely important, and this margarita gets bonus points in that department.
Rhubarb, Grapefruit & Thyme Cocktail // A little more on the tart and earthy side, the different layers here are sure to create a complex flavour profile that we can't wait to taste, especially with the more unusual fruits used.
St. Germain Mint Margarita // Another, more classic version of the margarita with elderflower notes thanks to one of our favourite liqueurs. There's also another recipe for a Peppered Jalepeno Margarita that sounds pretty delicious, especially in contrast.
Raspberry Rose Fizz // Gin based and rose flavoured, this one instantly appealed to us. This cocktail is a combination of two classic cocktails, the Clover Club and the Ramos Fizz. Beautifully light and festively pink, we're thinking it would be the perfect brunch cocktail.
Spicy Grapefruit Margarita // Another grapefruit flavoured cocktail and another margarita, we know, but this one is all about the kick, with the addition of cayenne simple syrup that we think would perfectly complement the citrusy grapefruit. Oh, and definitely don't forget the salt rim on this one!
Pear, Rosemary & Lemongrass Cocktail // Fruity, flavourful and crisp, this is another interesting mix of ingredients that we're dying to try, and with the lemongrass and ginger, we're thinking we'd pair it with an asian-inspired meal.
Watermelon Frosty // Watermelon is one of those flavours that just screams summer, and though we're usually not big on super sugary frozen drinks, this is the perfect indulgent, refreshing option for a blended drink.
Green Machine // Cucumber is such a great summer ingredient for cocktails with it's crisp and mild flavour, and this is a simple recipe that mixes it with some of our other favourite green ingredients - honeydew, mint, lime - for a perfect happy hour treat.
Lavender Bee's Knees // This prohibition-era classic has bright, crisp flavours and is often touted as the gin drink for non-gin drinkers. Adding lavender highlights the floral notes of the honey without compromising the spirit of this timeless cocktail.