"It's so beautifully arranged on the the plate – you know someone's fingers have been all over it." – Julia Child

Posts tagged Summer cocktails

Get it while it’s hot! Enjoy a super-refreshing discount when you buy an e-copy of Summer Cocktails today through July 2nd! Cocktails have never been this easy and delicious. Learn how to stock your home bar, make underpinnings like from-scratch sour mix, and entertain with drinks that range from classic piña coladas and big bowls of fresh peach and bourbon punch.

Want a taste? You got it!


Serves 1

A shandy or shandygaff is a drink of beer with a carbonated beverage such as ginger beer or citrus-flavored soda. I prefer making it with a pale lager or a hefeweizen and strong ginger beer, and, in the summer, with lemony herbs and dried spices like thyme and coriander, which amp up the underlying flavor notes of the beverage.

1 teaspoon coriander seeds, lightly crushed
1 strip orange zest
1 strip lemon zest
2 rosemary sprigs
4 thyme or lemon thyme sprigs
Ice cubes, if desired
6 ounces lager or hefeweizen (wheat) beer, chilled
4 ounces ginger beer, chilled

– Toast coriander seeds in a small skillet over medium-high heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer to a glass. Carefully run a lit match along the orange and lemon zests, rub them on the glass’s rim, and then drop them into the glass along with the rosemary and thyme. Add the ice, if using, then add the beer and ginger beer and stir lightly to combine. Serve.

 Are you thinking what we’re thinking? It’s just too hot and sunny to wait for the weekend. Go for it!

Summer lovin’…


Serves 1

The classic Sex on the Beach is made with vodka, peach schnapps, orange or pineapple juice, and cranberry juice. This variation relies on seasonal peaches, infused liquor, and bitter Campari for a decidedly more sophisticated cocktail.

1 peach, scrubbed, pitted, and cubed, or ¾ cup frozen peaches
1 ½ ounces vodka or gin
1 ½ ounces fresh orange juice or pineapple juice
1 ½ ounces Campari
½ ounce Chambord or crème de cassis
½ cup ice cubes
Maraschino cherries, orange wedges, or pineapples cubes, for garnish

` In a blender, pulse peach, liquor, juice, Campari, Chambord, and ice cubes until well blended. Garnish with maraschino cherries, orange wedges, or pineapple cubes and serve immediately.

FOR THE CLASSIC SEX ON THE BEACH:  In a shaker, combine 1 ½ ounces vodka, 1 ounce peach schnapps, 1 ounce Chambord, 2 ounces pineapple or orange juice, and 1 ounce cranberry juice. Add a handful of ice cubes, shake, and pour into an ice-filled glass. Garnish with Maraschino cherries.

Is there anything better than getting home at the end of a long day and having a cocktail to unwind? We think little else compares.

We’re very partial to beer, however, an icy, summer fruit or fragrant herb-spiked sip seems very apropos during these uncomfortably sticky days when the sweat pools in the dip of your lower back and the backs of your thighs feel like they’ve just been licked by a rather large dog.

Here are two refreshing recipes to put the “happy” in your evening hours. The margarita takes a cue from some favorite Thai dishes, incorporating vibrant lemongrass and basil via a simple syrup that’s made in the blink of an eye. Reserve extra syrup in your fridge so you can fix a drink quicker than Sally Draper. Now, this is a gin margarita, only because tequila makes one of us weepy, but feel free to use the spirit of your choice.

The second recipe takes advantage of tart, sweet, garnet-hued cherries which are one of the few saving graces of these unrelenting hot months. This drink is quite appropriately named a “smash” – cherries are gently crushed during pitting then mixed with smoky bourbon, a bit of sugar, and fizzy club soda for a, well, absolutely smashing cocktail.

Bottoms up!


For the Basil-Lemongrass Simple Syrup

Rinds of 2 limes
4 lemongrass stalks, chopped
1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1 cup water
1 cup sugar

– Combine all ingredients in medium saucepan. Bring to boil over high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat, cover, and allow to sit 20 minutes.

– Strain syrup and discard solids.

– Refrigerate until chilled. Reserve leftover syrup in airtight container in refrigerator.

For the Margaritas
Makes 2 cocktails

½ cup gin
½ cup basil-lemongrass simple syrup
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 limes, thinly sliced into rounds
Ice cubes

– Rub rims of glasses with a lime, then, dip in salt to coat.

– Combine remaining ingredients in pitcher and serve.

Makes 8 cocktails

1 pound fresh cherries, pitted and gently smashed
8 ounces bourbon
16 sugar cubes
32 ounces club soda, chilled
Ice cubes

– Stir cherries, bourbon, sugar, and club soda together in pitcher. Serve over ice.