Summer Spirits

We all have them…a favorite summer drink, and I’m not talking kool-aid.  Everyone has a favorite drink that they enjoy during the summer, whether it’s by the pool, at a bbq, or at a happy hour.   Today we will discuss a few drinks that will keep you cool and happy during those hot summer days and nights!

First, the Mojito.  This has to be the ultimate summer drink.  A Mojito made the right way is one of the best things since sliced bread.  This Cuban drink has five main ingredients:  white rum, sugar, lime, sparkling water, and mint.  When you have a sugar cane and fresh mint in a Mojito, you know  you have the real thing.  My favorite place to get this drink is at a restaurant in DC, Ceiba.  A friend took me there when I first moved to DC, and I must admit one of the tastiest things is chewing on that sugar cane!

Pina Coladas have been a favorite of mine for a while.  And the good thing is you can have this drink shaken or frozen. When mixed in the blender, I get the combination of a milkshake with a little bit of a kick!   Rum, cream of coconut, and pineapple juice are the ingredients in this tasty drink.  Pina coladas are traditionally Spanish, but are enjoyed stateside and in the Caribbean.

A tall cool glass of lemonade is perfect on a hot summer day, and an Electric Lemonade is great for a summer night.  With a little vodka, curacao (add blue curacao for an Electric Blue Lemonade), sweet and sour mix, and Sprite you have some lemonade with a little extra.  Just make sure you don’t mix your drink with Grandma’s at the family BBQ!

I know tons of people who love a good pitcher of Sangria.  And it’s great that you don’t have to wait until the summer to enjoy this drink.   A few people have pitchers available for guests at house parties year round.   There seems to be various recipes for Sangrias, but the essential ingredients are red wine, fruit slices, sweetener, a small amount of another spirit, ice, and soda.  Most people have the fruit soak in the Sangria for hours on end before it’s served, thus ensuring that when the fruit is eaten, those who partake will have the ultimate Sangria experience.

As an avid wine drinker, I would be remiss if I did not mention Muscadine wine.  As a little girl in the South, my cousins, friends, and I could not wait until the Muscadines were in season.   A grape-like fruit, Muscadines were the essential for a complete summertime experience.  If you find the right batch, you could eat these all day.  They are so good that I requested my mother freeze some for me last summer when she bought some!  Muscadine wine captures the delicious taste of this fruit with the tastiness of wine.  Winemakers traditionally add sugar to make this a dessert wine, but in my humble opinion, this drink can be consumed during any meal.

So what is your favorite drink?  Do you have any yummy summer cocktail recipes?  If so, please share! Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.

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