Summer Fruit Cocktails
Adding blackberries to a mint julep adds fruity flavor to the classic warm-weather cocktail.
When watermelon is in abundance, this is a great way to use it. Bobby Flay purees seedless watermelon chunks, then strains the juice through a sieve and mixes it with silver tequila, sugar syrup, blueberries, mint and fresh lime juice.
Sour-Cherry Gin Slings
This sweet-tart concoction is based on the classic Singapore sling, replacing the traditional cherry brandy with an intensely vibrant homemade sour-cherry syrup. With a squirt of sparkling water, the syrup also makes a great base for kid-friendly cherry soda.
This light and refreshing cocktail is as reminiscent of the American South as it is of the South of France.
Sangria, a Spanish variation on traditional punch composed of wine, fruit and brandy, was formally introduced to America at the 1964 World’s Fair in New York City. This seasonal version uses vodka instead of brandy.
For anyone who wants to flaunt a love of Cosmos, muddled blueberries tint this version a gorgeous hot pink.
Strawberries sweeten these mojitos from Joaquin Simo. “This is a great drink when you’re in the mood for something fruity,” says Simo. Use a molasses-based rum (like white Brugal) for a smoother drink, or a sugarcane-based rum (such as white Barbancourt) for a drier cocktail.
This drink pays homage to the orchards and vineyards of British Columbia’s fertile Okanagan Valley.
Melon Sparkler with Tapioca Pearls
Mixing honeydew juice with the fizzy Italian wine Moscato makes a super-refreshing cocktail. Melon balls and chewy tapioca pearls are fun to eat and cute to look at.
One great thing about blender drinks: The machine does all the work. Adam Seger prefers Vita-Mix blenders, which create especially smooth purees.
Indian Summer Cup
Master bartender Wayne Collins prefers using premium, naturally sweetened tonic water (sometimes called Indian tonic water) in this punch. Q Tonic, made with agave nectar, and Fever-Tree, sweetened with cane sugar, are both excellent brands.
Blueberries Gone Wild
Health-conscious bar chef Debbi Peek created this gin drink to showcase antioxidant-dense ingredients, including blueberries and pomegranate.
Bourbon Blackberry Collins
Many spirits and fruits and herbs can work in a Tom Collins riff. In place of blackberries and bourbon, try raspberries and vodka or cherries and rum.
Black Pepper-Raspberry Sorbet with Prosecco
Chef James Holmes topped raw oysters with this sweet-savory sorbet before deciding it would make an excellent cocktail with Prosecco. A good-quality, store-bought raspberry sorbet is a fine shortcut.
The Don's Bramble
Mixologist Jackson Cannon calls this drink a celebration of late summer.
New York chef-partners Frank Falcinelli and Frank Castronovo and their friend Travis Kauffman concocted this terrifically refreshing cooler one hot summer night with ingredients from Falcinelli’s rooftop garden.
While playing with leftover ingredients one night, Jamie Boudreau combined grappa and peach puree. The mixture was sweet, so he added Aperol, a bitter orange liqueur, then Champagne, resulting in this well-balanced cocktail.
Cholo fresco means “somebody who is fresh in every sense,” Hans Hilburg says. “Light, saucy, naughty, audacious . . . And what’s fresher than cucumber, melon, mint and lime?”
This cocktail’s name is a play on both the Spanish word for watermelon, sandía, and “incendiary,” referring to the peppery tequila and the spicy ancho chile rim.
Fruit flavors generally mix well if they’re from the same botanical family. This cool and light summer cocktail works because cucumber and melon both belong to the Cucurbitaceae family.