Summer is right around the corner, and with the change of seasons comes an increased interest in delicious, refreshing and cold mixed drinks. Whether they’re being sipped on the beach, at the barbecue or simply while lounging in the sun, these five drink recipes are some of the best to beat the summer heat.
Hailing from sun-drenched Spain, Sangria is one of the most classic mixed drinks for summer time. It’s pretty simple and can be made for relatively cheap. The classic Sangria punch is a mixture of fruit juices (typically lemon and orange), fresh fruit (lemons, oranges and cherries), red wine, brandy and usually some form of carbonated soda water. While the classic Sangria is definitely worthwhile, there are many different variations, ranging from exchanging sweet Moscato for red wine, to using watermelon and peach juices instead of lemon and orange. The recipe is more than open for interpretation.
This classic Cuban cocktail, a favorite of Ernest Hemingway, is a sweet, refreshingly cool drink that was made to beat the summer heat. There are many variations of the Mojito, usually made with different fruit flavorings, but the classic is still the supreme version. The recipe is incredibly simple: mint leaves, lime wedges/juice, white rum, sugar and club soda. The mentholated cocktail is quite sweet, and the lime, mint and sugar help take away much of the rum’s bite.
This decadent and creamy cocktail is one of the best drinks to be made with a blender. The cold mixture contains vodka, Baileys Irish Cream, Kahlúa coffee liqueur, ice and cream. The drink is practically a boozy amatuer milkshake, especially if the optional garnish of chocolate syrup is added. It’s heavy and delicious and the perfect way to cool off after a hot day.
4. Peach Donkey
This sweet and spicy cocktail is a great excuse to combine overwhelmingly sugary peach nectar with a large amount of high proof vodka. A combination of vodka, ginger liqueur, peach nectar (or puree for a more healthy choice), ice, ginger beer and peach slices for a garnish. The ginger provides a spicy contrast for the sweet nectar and peaches, making this drink a balanced delicacy for any situation.
Probably the most iconic summer cocktail, the Margarita is a drink of controversy, with its exact origins and the way it is supposed to be prepared being topics of great contention. The best way to prepare the margarita is the classic way: shaken (not stirred) tequila, triple sec, fresh squeezed lime juice (much better than pre-made sour mix) and kosher salt. It’s simple, summery, a crowd-pleaser and goes great with almost any summer food.