Raise a Glass to Warm Weather

Summer cocktail

There’s no doubt that summer is now in full swing. And as the brutal sun beats down on us all, there’s plenty we can do to not only cope with the heat, but even find ways to savor and celebrate it. After all, what’s more idyllic than curling up in the shade outside with a book and an ice-cold cocktail on a warm day? Summer is a great time to have some fruity, themed cocktails in celebration of the bounty of the season. Read on for some yummy, thematic cocktail ideas to try this summer. As an added bonus, most of these are fairly low-calorie, to boot!

Grape Crush
Not only is this one tasty and reminiscent of spiked grape soda (but better, and lower in calories!), it also gives you a nice sharp boost of vitamin C. To make it, you’ll need 8 seedless red grapes, 1 ½ ounces of grape juice, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, 2 ounces of vodka, 1-3 ounces of soda water, and a lemon wheel if you want a fancy garnish. Just muddle the grapes in a shaker, add ice, juices, and the vodka, shake well, and strain into a lowball glass over ice, then add soda water.

Bramble cocktail

Bramble
Boasting the fresh botanical bite of gin with the fruity zest of lemon and blackberry, you can’t go wrong with one of these. All you need is two shots dry gin, one shot lemon juice, ½ shot sugar syrup, ½ shot blackberry liqueur, and a handful of fresh blackberries. Throw the gin, lemon juice, syrup and blackberries into a mixer and muddle the blackberries. Shake vigorously and strain into a glass over crushed ice. Pour the liqueur over the top and enjoy right away!

Mojito Slushie
Did you think a standard mojito was where the refreshing potential of this minty-lime drink ended? Think again. A fun twist on a classic, mojito slushies are surprisingly easy to make, and offer the taste of a mojito in a chilly slushie form. Just use the same ingredients as the above recipe, add the lime juice, sugar, mint, and rum to a blender, blend until smooth, add a couple handfuls of ice to taste, and blend until slushy. Pour into a tall glass and garnish with a mint sprig.

Mojito cocktail

Classic Mojito
The mojito is a classic for a good reason. Minty, fresh, with just enough kick, the tingly feeling of the mint just adds to the appeal of an ice-cold cocktail on a hot day. To whip up one of these classic minty treats, you need one teaspoon sugar, half a lime, six sprigs of mint, one and a half ounces rum, ice, and soda water. Put sugar and the juice of the ½ lime in a mixer, and throw the lime in after you squeeze it. Toss in five of the mint sprigs (save one to garnish), and muddle. Add the rum, strain over ice into a tall glass, and pour the soda water on top to taste. Garnish with the spare mint sprig. Alternately, don’t strain or garnish, and do this all in the glass from the beginning. It looks a little messier that way with the mint and lime floating around in the glass, but at the same time, it offers a certain appeal in its presentation.

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