5 Summer Cocktails to Win Over Guests

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Summer is officially HERE. That means it’s time for barbecues, backyard parties, rooftop bars, chilling by the pool, and soaking up the sun. What better way to enjoy all those activities than with a drink in your hand?


                                                       Blueberry Mint Julep

Recipe & photo: Courtesy of the Suburban Soapbox

The Kentucky Derby is over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a little taste of the South! Introduce your guests to some southern hospitality with this one. Serve it in silver cups for a traditional flair.

Yields: 4 servings

What You’ll Need:

2 c. blueberries, plus more for garnish

4 oz. simple syrup

4 oz. bourbon

½ tsp. Vanilla extract

8 mint leaves, plus more for garnish

4 c. crushed ice


Place 1 cup blueberries, crushed ice, and vanilla into a blender and puree until smooth. Next, divide the remaining blueberries into four glasses and top with two mint leaves. With a muddler, mash the remaining mint leaves and blueberries. To finish, add the crushed ice to each cup and top with the blueberry puree divided among the four cups. Garnish with mint and blueberries and enjoy!


                                                        Frozen Dark and Stormy

Recipe & Photo: Courtesy of Delish

On a bright and sunny day, it never hurts to cool down with a Dark and Stormy. An update on a classic, the frozen Dark and Stormy will have guests begging for more.

Yields: 2 servings

What You’ll Need:

1 can ginger beer

1 tbsp fresh ginger

Juice of one lime

2 c. ice

4 oz. dark rum


Using a blender, blend together the first four ingredients until smooth. Then simply divide among two glasses and pour 2 oz. of dark rum on top of each glass.


                                                          Sunset Punch

Recipe & photo: Courtesy of Food & Wine

Spice up any party with this refreshing bourbon and citrus punch. It’ll transform any backyard into white-sand beach on an island.

Yields: 8 servings

What You’ll Need:

8 oz. bourbon

8 oz white vermouth

½ cup fresh lemon juice with lemon slices

¼ cup simple syrup

12 oz. chilled ginger beer


Grab a punch bowl and combine the first four ingredients into the bowl. Add the ginger beer and lemon slices and serve over ice.


Red, White, and Blue Sangria

This patriotic drink is soon to be an All-American classic, perfect for any 4th of July gathering. Cut some pineapple into star-shapes for a truly star-spangled experience.

Recipe & photo: Courtesy Certified Pastry Aficionado

Yields: 6 Servings

What You’ll Need:

¼ c. sugar

¼ c. brandy liquor

1 750 ml bottle dry white wine

12 oz. lemon lime soda

1 pound sliced strawberries, sliced

1 dry pint blueberries

Ice (for serving)


First, put the sugar and brandy in the pitcher. Stir to dissolve the sugar. Add the bottle of white wine and lemon-lime soda. Stir together and finish by adding strawberries and blueberries.


                                                        Watermelon, Lime, and Tequila Frozen Cocktail

Recipe & photo: Courtesy of bon appetite

It’s not summer without some juicy watermelon. This drink is a twist on a summer classic that your guests will surely enjoy.

Yields: 4 servings

What You’ll Need:

3 ½ cups of watermelon pieces, frozen; plus wedges for serving (optional)

6 oz. tequila blanco

4 oz. simple syrup

2 oz. fresh lime juice

1 ½ “ thick jalapeno slice, with seeds; plus sliced jalepano for serving (optional)


Puree watermelon, tequila, simple syrup, lime juice, 1 ½ “ thick jalapeno slice, and 3 cups of ice in a blender until smooth and thick; the mixture will thin once poured. Divide among glasses and garnish with sliced jalepano and watermelon wedges, if it suits your fancy.


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