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19 Best Cocktails to This Summer


When temperatures soar, your top priority is probably cooling down. Sure, air conditioning and a dip in the pool can work wonders, but there’s nothing better than a refreshing, fruity cocktail to cool the jets.

Seriously, picture the scene. You’re burning up at your neighbour’s backyard BBQ. The sun is beating down, the cooler is fresh out of beers, and you’re parched.

Enter the perfect summer cocktail. The best summer cocktails are designed to be invigorating, and everyone deserves a great drink to wind down with at the end of a long day. With star ingredients like mint, lime, and even basic crushed ice, these zesty cocktails promise to cool you down in a flash.

If you think you’re too cool for traditional fruity cocktails, then sit tight. Hey, we get it. Perhaps you think summer cocktails consist of all fruit and no fire. However, you’d be sorely mistaken. Sure, you’ll always have your pick of delicious Pina Coladas and Margaritas. However, the best cocktail menus also feature options like fresh Mint Juleps and hot-sauce-laden Rocky Cucumbers. After all, even the hottest summer get-togethers need a little spicing up, right?

With options available for complete newbies and seasoned mixologists, you’re sure to find the ideal cocktail to elevate your next gathering.

To inspire you with ideas, we’ve compiled a list of the best summer cocktails to try right now!

Mojito

With a splash of lime and a hint of mint, a refreshing mojito is sure to hit the spot when the sun comes out. Hailing from Cuba, this zingy rum-based cocktail is one that guests always love. According to CrystalMixer, the mojito is one of the most popular drinks in the world and will look great when served in a tall glass. A generous serving of seltzer and a spoonful of sugar prevents this cocktail from being too bitter. If you’re looking for something even sweeter, add fresh orange juice to the mix.

Ingredients
1.25 oz — Captain Morgan Original spiced rum
12 — mint
1 tbsp — sugar
0.5 oz — lime juice
2 oz — soda
Directions
Place mint leaves at bottom of the glass. Add crushed ice, Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum, sugar, lime juice and muddle. Add soda water and garnish with mint leaves.

Aperol Spritz

This fizzy cocktail is bright and appealing, making it an ideal choice for summer garden parties. To create this drink, just combine Aperol, prosecco, and soda. To complete your Spritz, serve with a large slice of orange. Aperol gives this drink its signature vibrancy, making it look as divine as it tastes. Bottoms up!

Ingredients
3 oz — Prosecco
2 oz — Aperol
1 oz — soda water
Directions
Add all ingredients into a wine glass with ice and stir. Garnish with an orange wheel.

Pina Colada

Whether or not you find yourself caught in the rain, a Pina Colada is the perfect cocktail for summer. Both easy and refreshing, this is the ultimate drink to sip by the pool. A Pina Colada combines rum, coconut milk, and pineapple chunks for a tropical taste. Once you’ve mixed the necessary ingredients, blend with ice until smooth. For a creamier take on this summer staple, freeze the pineapple before blending. Then, serve in a tall glass, garnish with pineapple or cherries and enjoy!

Ingredients
3 oz — light rum
3 tbsp — coconut cream
3 tbsp crushed — pineapples
Directions
Put all ingredients into an electric blender with 2
cups of crushed ice. Blend at a high speed for a
short length of time. Strain into a collins glass and
serve with a straw.

Mai Tai

Level up your next summer barbeque with a Mai Tai. Not only does this drink look like happiness in a glass, but the humble Mai Tai will transport you back to the Tiki culture of the 1940s. Designed to be exotic, this summer cocktail features Jamaican rum, a simple syrup, orange juice, and lime juice. Garnish with mint leaves and a wedge of pineapple for a colourful twist.

Ingredients
1 oz — light rum
1/2 oz — creme de almond
1/2 oz — triple sec
1/2 oz — Myer’s dark rum sweet and sour mix pineapple juice
Directions
Pour light rum, creme de almond and triple sec, in order, into a collins glass. Almost fill with equal parts of sweet and sour mix and pineapple juice. Add dark rum, a large straw, and serve unstirred.

Peach Bellini

Nothing says bottomless brunches and walks along the beach like a Peach Bellini. This timeless Italian cocktail is made using two basic ingredients: prosecco and peach puree. Simple, elegant, and oh-so-delicious, this summer cocktail promises to whisk you away to the Italian coast.

Ingredients
1 medium ripe peach, peeled and pureed
4 – 6 oz – Champagne
Directions
Pour peach puree into a glass and slowly add champagne. Stir gently. Garnish with a peach slice.

Strawberry Daiquiri

The Strawberry Daiquiri is deemed a quintessential summer cocktail for a reason. Although this drink is packed with fresh strawberries, smooth rum, cane sugar, and a hint of lime, it remains pleasantly sweet. To beat the heat, use frozen strawberries and blend to your heart’s content! Citrus fruits not only add flavour and zing — they’re also good for you! Not to mention the beautiful garnish you can make with citruses such as lemons, limes, and oranges. They’re rich in vitamins, fibre, and plant compounds. According to Healthline, citrus fruits offer various health benefits, including anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Only one medium-sized orange can have a whole day’s need of vitamin C, imagine that!

Ingredients
1/2 oz — strawberry schnapps
1 oz — light rum
1 oz — lime juice
1 tsp — powdered sugar
1 oz — strawberries
Directions
Add ingredients with a bit of ice in a blender. Blend and then strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a strawberry.

Tequila Sunrise

True to its name, Tequila Sunrise is one of the most beautiful summer cocktails in the world. This cocktail is ideal for those who prefer less alcohol-heavy cocktails, as the mixture of orange and grenadine largely overpowers the tequila base. This aesthetically pleasing drink is surprisingly easy to make, as the grenadine automatically settles to the bottom of the glass when all ingredients are mixed. Simply pour the tequila and orange juice into a tall glass, add the grenadine, and watch the magic happen.

Ingredients
2 oz — tequila orange juice
2 dashes — grenadine syrup
Directions
Pour tequila into a highball glass with ice, and top with orange juice. Stir. Add grenadine by tilting the glass and pouring grenadine down side by flipping the bottle vertically very quickly. The grenadine should go straight to the bottom and then rise up slowly through the drink. Garnish stirrer, straw and cherry-orange.

Mint Julep

This bourbon-based, minty cocktail was first discovered in the southern states of America and has since become associated with summertime in the South. All you need to create this drink is bourbon, mint, sugar, and crushed ice. So, if you’re low on time and want to whip up a refresher in a hurry, this is an excellent choice.

Ingredients
4 fresh — mint
2 1/2 oz -—bourbon whiskey
1 tsp — powdered sugar
2 tsp — water
Directions
Muddle mint leaves, powdered sugar, and water in a collins glass. Fill the glass with shaved or crushed ice and add bourbon. Top with more ice and garnish with a mint sprig. Serve with a straw.

Sangria

A pitcher of classic, blood-red sangria is sure to get the party started. This simple blend of wine and fruit is an incredible thirst-quencher on a hot summer’s day. While crisp and light, the hefty serving of red wine or hard liquor in a typical Sangria certainly packs a punch. To make this drink even more enticing, fill your pitcher with sliced oranges and apples to munch on later. After all, nothing beats boozy fruit at the height of summer.

Ingredients
1 bottle — red wine
1/2 cup — sugar
1 cup — orange juice
1 cup — lemon juice, cloves and cinnamon
Directions
Mix all together and put in the refrigerator till cold. Add cloves and cinnamon sticks to taste.

Paloma

Don’t be fooled by this cocktail’s demure appearance — it’s stronger than it looks. Grapefruit and lime juices give the Paloma its pale appearance and signature zesty kick. However, it’s the tequila Blanco which gets the party started. With a dash of agave syrup added for sweetness and depth, you’ll struggle to stop at just one cocktail.

Ingredients
2 oz — tequila
6 oz — club soda
1 splash — lime juice
1 pinch — salt
Directions
Pour the tequila into a salt-rimmed collins glass filled with ice cubes. Fill with club soda. Splash lime juice on top, and serve.

Singapore Sling

If you’re looking to recreate a challenging cocktail recipe this summer, then you’ll love the Singapore Sling. Deemed one of Asia’s most famous cocktails, this drink combines gin, cherry liqueur, pineapple juice, bitters, club soda, and grenadine. This summer cocktail is the perfect antidote for humid weather and is almost as good as visiting the beautiful Lion City itself.

Ingredients
2 oz — gin
1 oz — cherry brandy
1 oz — lime juice
1/4 tsp — benedictine herbal liqueur
1/4 tsp — brandy
Directions
Combine gin, cherry brandy and lime juice in a cocktail shaker together with half-filled ice cubes. Shake well. Strain into a collins glass almost filled with ice cubes. Drop the benedictine and brandy into the centre of the drink and serve.

Strawberry Margarita

The famous Margarita takes many forms, but the Strawberry Margarita is synonymous with summer. All that’s required to make this well-balanced drink is basil, crushed strawberries, lime juice, syrup, and tequila. Simply put your ingredients in a blender with plenty of ice, pour, and proceed to bask in the sun. Before serving, be sure to line the rim of your glass with salt. Based on scientific studies by the National Institute of Health, not only does the salty rim help to add depth to any food you may be having, but a margarita isn’t a margarita without that famous finishing touch!

Ingredients
2 oz — tequila orange juice
2 dashes — grenadine syrup
Directions
Pour tequila into a highball glass with ice, and top with orange juice. Stir. Add grenadine by tilting the glass and pouring grenadine down side by flipping the bottle vertically very quickly. The grenadine should go straight to the bottom and then rise up slowly through the drink. Garnish stirrer, straw and cherry-orange.

Rocky Cucumber

Add a spring to your step with a Rocky Cucumber. The combination of vodka, cucumber, and hot sauce makes this drink one of the more daring summer cocktails on a typical menu. Although this spicy drink isn’t for everyone, the kick you get from a Rocky Cucumber is sure to spice up any night on the town.

Ingredients
2 oz — Vodka
1 oz — Lime Juice, freshly squeezed
3/4 oz — Simple Syrup
4 Cucumber slices
3 Dashes — Hot Pepper Sauce
1 — Cucumber (Garnish)
Directions
Muddle 3 slices of cucumber with the vodka, lime juice, simple syrup, and 3 dashes of hot sauce, in a cocktail shaker. Add ice and shake well. Strain into an old-fashioned glass filled with fresh ice and top with club soda. Garnish with a cucumber slice and add an extra dash of hot sauce. Note: Take it easy with the hot sauce. One dash too many can easily throw off the balance and burn the drink to the point where it’s undrinkable.

Cape Codder

Are you looking for your next summer happy hour pick? Try the Cape Codder. This cocktail is an ideal solution for those who drink regularly, as it’s simple and easy to prepare at home. Made using cranberry juice, vodka, and a touch of club soda for effervescence, the Cape Codder is a low-maintenance choice for busy folk.

Ingredients
1 1/2 oz — vodka
3 oz — cranberry juice
1 — lime
Directions
Pour Vodka and Cranberry Juice into a highball glass over ice. Stir well, add a wedge of lime, and serve.

Cosmopolitan

It’s impossible to compile a list of the best summer cocktails without including the classic Cosmopolitan. Distinctly fruity, punchy, and pretty, it’s unsurprising that this drink remains a garden party staple. To fix yourself a Cosmo, shake up vodka, Triple Sec, cranberry juice, and half a lime. Then, drain into a martini glass or champagne flute. For a touch of elegance, garnish your glass with a lime wedge and sugared rim.

Ingredients
1 oz — vodka
1/2 oz — triple sec
1/2 oz — Rose’s lime juice
1/2 oz — cranberry juice
Directions
Shake vodka, triple sec, lime and cranberry juice vigorously in a shaker with ice. Strain into a martini glass, garnish with a lime wedge on the rim and serve.

Strawberry Gin Fizz

The addition of crushed strawberries and prosecco transforms a traditional Gin and Tonic into a refreshing summer cocktail. The gin provides a solid base, while the prosecco adds a hit of effervescence that keeps the drink light. Both alcohols work seamlessly with the freshness of the fruit to create a highly drinkable cocktail that you’ll recreate for years to come.

Ingredients
2 oz — gin juice of
1/2 — lemon
1 tsp — powdered sugar with carbonated water or soda
Directions
Shake gin, juice of lemon, and powdered sugar with ice and strain into a highball glass over two ice cubes. Fill with carbonated water, stir, and serve.

Blackberry Wine Slushy

Summer is berry season, so why not celebrate with a Blackberry Wine Slushy? Featuring fresh blackberries, vodka, orange juice, and wine, this fruity cocktail is guaranteed to cool you down quickly. To create this tasty treat, tip all ingredients into a blender, blitz, and serve. For a thicker consistency, consider swapping out fresh berries for frozen.

Ingredients
4 oz — Red Wine
1 1/2 oz — Vodka
5 — Blackberries
1 oz — Orange Juice, freshly squeezed
1 tsp — Agave Nectar
2 — Blackberries (Garnish)
Directions
Add all the ingredients with about 1 1/2 cups of ice into a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into a stemless wine glass. Garnish with 2 blackberries.

Grapefruit Shandy

Drinking an ice-cold shandy in the summer sun is as close to heaven as mere mortals can get. Although traditional shandies are delicious, adding grapefruit to the mix is sure to keep things fresh. First, mix up your grapefruit fizz using fresh juice and sparkling water. Then, top things off with your favourite wheat beer. Tart, tangy, and satisfying, this summer cocktail is a winner.

Ingredients
1 1/2 oz — Grapefruit Juice
6 oz — Beer
1 1/2 oz — Simple Syrup
3 oz — Water
1 — Grapefruit (Garnish)
Directions
Pour water, simple syrup, and grapefruit juice into a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake well. Strain that grapefruit mix into a beer glass, filling it half-way, and top it with beer. Complete it by garnishing with a grapefruit slice.

Long Island Iced Tea

The Long Island Iced Tea is a cult-favorite cocktail that can easily catch you off guard. Despite containing ample measures of white liquor and Triple Sec, you’ll find yourself downing glass after glass of this stuff as you simply won’t taste the alcohol. Aside from its glorious and refreshing flavor, the Long Island Iced Tea is a nostalgic drink that will take you right back to summer college parties. Ah, those were the days.

Ingredients
1 part — vodka
1 part — tequila
1 part — rum
1 part — gin
1 part — Triple Sec
1 1/2 parts — sweet and sour mix
1 splash — Coca-Cola
Directions
Mix ingredients together over ice in a glass. Pour into a shaker and give one brisk shake. Pour back into the glass and make sure there is a touch of fizz at the top. Garnish with lemon.

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