Beer and wine are natural partners for anything cooked over a bed of hot coals, but an icy cocktail is equally appropriate at the backyard dinner party.
When pairing cocktails with grilled foods, look to match drinks based on smoky, dark spirits (such as Scotch, bourbon or aged tequila) with steaks and barbecue. Lighter, spicier foods are excellent with sweeter, fruitier drinks.
At right, you'll find a dozen of my summertime favorites. Or, view these cocktails as a slideshow.