It's Summer Cocktail Time at Go Ahead... Take A Bite!!
So pull up a stool, grab a notepad and a pen (or use the "print friendly" feature that's at the bottom of each post) and jot down a recipe or two. Heck, why not get 'em all down on paper so you can be ready to rock like a pro mixologist with this whole line-up of awesome cocktails at your next summer gathering!!
I'm going to include the brand names of some liquors or get specific about other ingredients in the cocktails listed here today, but please note that I have not been compensated for mentioning or sharing my opinion about these products. They are simply just my preferences.
All amounts are for one cocktail, unless **otherwise specified. I've made sure to include tips for making the best cocktails that you can. Of course, here at GATAB, we always drink responsibly. Please don't ever drink and drive!
Blood Orange Martini
I discovered this cocktail at a very nice restaurant that Hubbs and I visited while on vacation. I only had a tiny sip, since I already had my cocktail of choice in front of me. (that would be recipe number 3, in case you were wondering.) If I hadn't, or if I was a two cocktail kind of gal these days, I'd have ordered one of these in a heartbeat!
- 4 Oz Vodka
- 1/2 Oz Triple Sec or other Orange flavored Liqueur
- 2 Oz Blood Orange Juice
- Slice of Orange for garnish
Combine all ingredients (except the orange slice), with a generous amount of ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously for a few seconds. Strain into a martini glass. Garnish with the orange slice.
This cocktail (or technically "highball") can be made with either Gin or Vodka (Vodka Collins) which is my personal preference. It's a light and refreshing summer thirst quencher that goes down smooth and easy on a hot summer day, so try not to get too carried away!
- 2 Oz Gin
- 1 Oz Lemon Juice
- 1 Tsp Superfine Sugar (or 1 Tbls Simple Syrup)
- 3 Oz Club Soda or Collins Mix
- 1 Maraschino Cherry
- 1 Orange or Lemon Slice
The Dirty Martini
This is one of my favorites, on the rare occasions that I treat myself to a cocktail. I don't drink much alcohol these days, because of some of the medications I take, but when I do.... well, let's just say that I like my Dirty Martini's extra dirty. ;~) If you like (or love, as is the case with moi) green olives, then you'll go bonkers for this smooth and savory libation!
- 2 Oz Grey Goose (unflavored) Vodka
- 1 Oz Brine from the Olive Jar
- Splash of Dry Vermouth
- Olives for garnish
Gin and Tonic
This is another well know, established cocktail in the "highball" category. According to what I've always been told, it's considered the "official" cocktail of Great Britain. I found this recipe in magazine article interviewing an American ex-pat who'd been living in England for several years and what follows is his recipe for "THE Perfect Gin and Tonic". I do like to try and defer to the experts when it comes to such classic food and libation, so cheerio, let's go!
- 3 Oz Bombay Sapphire Gin (or "Mother's Ruin")
- 4 Oz Schweppes's Tonic Water (the use of any other brand of tonic is likened to treason - or so I've heard)
- 1 Tbls Lime Juice (fresh... never bottled, also as per above mentioned reason, but I do agree)
- Lime Wedge for garnish
The use of Bombay Sapphire gin is also highly recommended by many Brits, but since I despise all things Gin, I'll leave that up to you. I must admit that the idea of rimming the glass with the wedge of lime before adding it as a garnish, is a great one and I actually recommend it highly for just about any highball recipe.
Limoncello is an Italian Lemon Liqueur made by simply taking handfuls of fresh lemon rind and soaking it in grain alcohol (Vodka works perfectly) for a couple of weeks. It can be as smooth or as hearty as you like it to be, depending on the amount of lemon rind you use and the length of time that you allow it to steep.
It's great on it's own as an aperitif or even better in this luscious summer cooler. Just be sure to take only the yellow skin from the lemons, leaving as much of the white pith behind. It's the most bitter part of the rind.
- 3 Oz Limoncello
- 1 Oz Frozen Lemonade Concentrate
- 4 Oz Sparkling Water
- Lemon Wedge for garnish
(I also recommend rimming the glass with a bit of lemon juice and sugar! Yum!)
Cosmopolitan (or Pink See-Thru)
Here's another favorite of mine that I tend to gravitate toward in the warmer months. It's best known as the drink of choice for four very famous (although fictitious) New York City ladies named Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte & Samantha!
Some recipes I've seen call for a full ounce (or more) of Cranberry Juice, but the majority of bartenders that I've asked, say to use "just a splash" to give it color. The splash is my preference, but if you like more Cranberry, by all means, be my guest!
- 2 Oz Gray Goose L'Orange Vodka (or unflavored)
- 1 Oz Cointreau
- 1 Oz Fresh Lime Juice
- 1/2 Oz (splash) Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice
- Slice of Lime for garnish
I've never made this yummy drink myself because well... frankly, I'm a bit too lazy to make the Watermelon puree/juice. It really isn't that difficult to do, but it's a few more steps than I usually feel like taking when I'm in the mood for a cocktail! The best way to remove my laziness from the equation of course, is to make the puree a day ahead so that it's right there in your fridge, ready to build a delicious fruity summer treat. (a treat that's just for the adults, though!) **This recipe makes two drinks.
- 1 Cup Watermelon Juice (press fresh watermelon chunks through a sieve or cheesecloth)
- 1/2 Cup (4 oz) Vodka
- 1/4 Cup Simple Syrup (we've done that a couple of times... check here for the recipe)
- Juice of 1 Lime
- Watermelon Slices, for garnish
In a shaker that's half filled with ice, add the Watermelon Juice/Puree, Lime Juice, Vodka and Simple Syrup. Shake vigorously. Strain into chilled martini glasses and garnish with fresh watermelon slices. Now, that's refreshing!
Ahhhh! The ubiquitous, yet always festive Margarita! Now, I must confess that I simply cannot drink a Margarita made with "bar mix". Bar mix is that pre-made lemon-lime mixture that some bars use for cocktails requiring a citrus base. Not only do I not care for the taste that this concoction lends to a drink, but it gives me horrific heartburn too. So.... why use the stuff? Especially when it's just as easy and quick to do it the right way? You can certainly make your drink the way that you want to, but I really think if you try it my way, you'll never go back to a mix!
- 1 1/2 OZ Tequila (100% agave is what we prefer)
- 1 1/2 OZ Triple Sec or Cointreau (for this basic version I use Triple Sec)
- 1 to 1 1/4 OZ of Fresh Lime Juice
- Salt for the rim of the glass
- Wedge of Lime for garnish
This cocktail is one that I consider to be more of an after dinner drink. You could call it, dessert in a glass, really. It's rich, creamy and icy cold. What better way to end the perfect Summer meal? Or, maybe just to have as a treat after a long day of work?
- 2 Oz Vodka
- 1 Oz Triple Sec
- 1 Oz Orange Juice
- 1 Oz Heavy Cream
- 2 Tbls Sugar, mixed with the zest of 1/2 an Orange
Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled martini glass, rimmed with the Orange and Sugar.
What would a list of Summer cocktails be without the classic Mojito! This drink has been around for many years, but has regained it's popularity within the last decade or so. It's often referred to as Earnest Hemingway's favorite drink, during his years spent living & writing in Key West Florida, but that's not exactly true.
The drink that "Papa" Hemingway made famous, (first in Cuba and then in the Keys) is actually called a "Hemingway Daiquiri" and while the ingredients are somewhat similar to a Mojito, it's flavor is different. And quite tasty, at that!
(I'm feeling pretty generous today, so as a bonus, I'll include the recipe for this lovely concoction as well. Consider it my little gift to you! But first, let's get on with the Mojito, shall we?)
- 8 fresh Mint Leaves, stems removed
- 1/2 Lime, cut into fourths
- 1 to 2 tablespoons Superfine (or "bar") Sugar
- 1 cup crushed ice
- 2 OZ Cruzan or Bacardi White Rum
- 4 OZ Club Soda
Here's the part where you might want to, but please don't, strain the drink. Fill your glass 3/4 full with ice. Pour in the rum, then top it off with the club soda. Give it a stir, then give it a sip. If it's a little too bitter for your tastes, just add another 1/2 to 1 tsp. of sugar and stir it in. Garnish the glass with the last of your lime wedges and enjoy!
The Hemingway Daiquiri
So, here it is... The little bonus cocktail that I promised to share! (see above) My first experience with this drink was at an awesome restaurant in Jensen Beach Florida, called Conchy Joe's. They serve the "HD" in icy cold metal mugs with a piece of sugar cane to use as a stirring stick. Talk about refreshing!
If you've never tried this cocktail before, I highly recommend that you give it a go! If you have the opportunity to experience one (or three) of them at Conchy's, all the better!
- 2 & 1/2 ounces White Rum, like Bambu (or Bacardi)
- 1 ounce fresh Lime Juice
- 1 ounce fresh Grapefruit Juice (please don't use the concentrated stuff)
- 1/2 ounce of a good Croatian Maraschino Liqueur, like Maraska
Combine all of the ingredients in a cocktail shaker full of ice and shake it up vigorously. Strain the drink into a large rocks glass (or a metal mug, if you've got one) add a wheel of lime to the rim and if you just happen to have one on hand, a short stalk of sugar cane... and enjoy!
Enjoy! And please remember to drink responsibly... Please don't drink and drive!
Don't forget that you can print this (or any) recipe using the "Print Friendly" button at the foot of each post. It's a great little feature that allows you to remove any pictures (or any text that isn't relevant to the recipe) before printing. That can save on ink and paper & in today's economy, who doesn't want to save a little cash when you can?!
(This Post Was Formerly Titled Seasonal Food Friday: Week Seven)