Cool for the Summer: 4 Classic Drinks with a Fresh Twist

Summer is here and the days are longer.  Want to draw those sunshine-seekers in to your establishment? Try shaking up your usual drink menu! Adding some irresistibly fresh and unique summer cocktails to your repertoire will not only entice people to spend time at your bar, but will get them coming back for more.

Sweet Tea Sangria
Combine two of the most refreshing staple summer drinks and what do you get? Sweet tea sangria. This cocktail is perfect for patio sipping and a fantastic way to keep guests relaxed during those warm summer evenings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 750-ml. bottle white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc
  • 4 c. sweet tea
  • 1/4 c. triple sec
  • 2 c. sliced frozen peaches
  • 2 c. raspberries
  • Fresh mint, for garnish

How to make it:

  1. In a pitcher, combine wine, sweet tea, triple sec, frozen peaches and raspberries and stir until combined. Refrigerate until chilled.
  2. Serve garnished with mint.
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Mermaid Mules
Mermaid is the trend of the season, represented by fun colors and fresh tastes. Put a beachy twist on the classic mule by adding Blue Curaçao to the mix.

Ingredients:

  • 6 oz. vodka
  • 3 oz. Blue Curaçao
  • 3 oz. lime juice
  • 1 oz. (12-oz.) can ginger beer
  • 3 lime rounds, for garnish
  • Paper umbrellas, for garnish (optional)

How to make it:

  1. Divide vodka, blue curaçao, and lime juice between 3 glasses and stir to combine. Fill glasses with ice and top off each drink with ginger beer. Garnish with lime rounds and umbrella, if using.

Pineapple Mojito
Take a page from the cult classic Piña Colada and apply it to another cult favorite, the mojito, and you get an irresistibly summer-ific drink.

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup pineapple, finely chopped
  • 5 mint leaves
  • 1 teaspoons sugar (or more depending on the sweetness of the pineapple)
  • 2 ounces white rum
  • juice from 1/4 lime
  • club soda for serving
  • wedges of pineapple and mint leaves for garnish

How to make it:

  1. Place pineapple, mint leaves and sugar in a cocktail shaker and muddle with a cocktail muddler or handle of a wooden spoon.
  2. Add rum, lime juice and ice. Replace lid and shake until chilled.
  3. Strain cocktail into 2 ice filled glasses and top with club soda. Garnish with mint leaves and pineapple wedges. Enjoy!

Lemonade Mint Julep
A Kentucky Derby classic, the mint julep is a fantastic drink choice for those sweltering summer days. Make it even better by adding another summer favorite to it, lemonade.

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Ingredients:

  • 2 ounces Kentucky Bourbon (like Woodford Reserve)
  • 1 ounce simple syrup
  • 1 ounce lemon juice fresh squeezed
  • 4-5 Mint leaves muddled
  • 1/2 cup Lemon sparkling water cold

How to make it:

  1. In the bottom of a cocktail shaker, add the mint leaves and muddle. Fill the cocktail shaker with ice. Add the bourbon, simple syrup, and lemon juice. Fit the cocktail shaker with a tight-fitting lid and shake vigorously.
  2. Fill a glass with ice, and pour the cocktail over the ice. Top off the cocktail with the lemon sparkling water. Garnish glass with a lemon slice and mint sprig, if desired. Enjoy right away while cold.

Customers crave a refreshing beverage to pair with the summer heat.  Try adding some of these summer staples with a twist to your menu to draw people into your bar for the cool sensation they’re looking for.