We’re Toasting: Summer Cocktails

Though Rose and light white wines are really all that may be on the mind for summer sipping, I have found a good, refreshing, seasonal cocktail to be just as satisfying and thirst quenching. After Gary and I get home from our 20K+ days, we have been enjoying these tasty libations int he evenings. Careful, they may make you rethink your nightly beverage choice. Cheers!

Classic Negroni
negroniItaly’s ideal aperitif, that I soften a bit by adding just a spritz of sparkling water. A perfect way to start an evening and get the taste buds activated. 1 part gin, I love Bombay Sapphire East and London No 1
1 part Campari, Italy’s favorite bitter orange liqueur
1 part sweet vermouth, I like Carpano Antica
Splash sparkling water, club soda or Proseco
Orange twist
Preparation: Stir the first three ingredients together over ice in a rocks glass. Rub the orange rind on the rim of the glass and twist into the cocktail. Top with sparkling water and serve.

barking cat

Spicy Maria
bmFriend and fellow member of Les Dames d’Escoffier – Dallas, Laurie Bostic of Barking Cat Farm, gave me a jar of her Sweet Spicy Chili Pepper Pickles the other day. We love something sweet and savory, and I quickly realized how tasty they were while eating them straight out of the jar….but, always looking for a twist on a favorite cocktail, today I added a bit of the juice and a few of the peppers to the bottom of my Bloddy Maria glass, muddling slightly and topping with my favorite Milagro Reposado Tequila. Add lime, Worcestershire sauce, a bit of celery salt, pepper and tomato juice and you have an incredible, spicy take on a brunch time favorite.

melonSummer Melon
If you have a fresh watermelon on hand puree until smooth to make fresh juice, or pineapple juice works perfectly.
1 part Midori
1 part gin
1 part pineapple or watermelon juice
Splash club soda
Fresh mint for garnish
Preparation: Layer Midori, gin and pineapple juice in a rocks glass. Top with soda and garnish with fresh mint.