I looked at a bunch of recipes and figured there are four main Summer Drink Staple Techniques (SDSTs):
- Some kind of citrus-sugar combo.
- Seasonal fruits and herbs (specifically: mint).
- A lot of ice.
I really like the author’s idea of creating a “summer syrup” and will give it a go this season. If you haven’t made the “summer syrup” yet and are looking for a quick and easy summer cocktail (which also lets you experiment with syrups and bitters) here’s my go-to experimental summery cocktail.
- Summery Cocktail Framework
- 1.5 – 2 oz. spirit (I usually go for gin, but tequila is tasty too)
- 1/2 oz. fresh citrus juice. (Lemon, Lime, Orange, whatever’s on hand.)
- 1/2 oz. sweet. (simple syrup, honey syrup, maple syrup, Jo Snow, Royal Rose or B.G. Reynolds)
- 2-3 dashes of bitters (This is a great way to play with a bitters you’ve been wanting to use more. Works especially well with fruit bitters).
- Soda water, club soda, lemon-lime soda, ginger beer, champagne. You know… bubbles.
Mix all ingredients, except the bubbles, in a shaker or build in a highball glass. Mix/Shake. Top with bubbles.
Garnish. Straw. Drink.
Sometimes you’ll have to play with ratios to get the balance right. For example, if you’re using Brut Champagne vs. lemon-lime soda you might need more or less syrup to balance things out. Make a beverage than tweak it as desired.
Oh, by the way – here’s a funny bit from the article that made me laugh out loud.
To be clear: I’m not after the ultimate summer cocktail. We already have that and its called the daiquiri. I am looking for a single technique that can be called upon at a moments notice no matter what is on hand, and deployed to large groups of friends in the waning sunlight after a day spent outside. To start, I had to really think about what makes a great summer drink. Theyre refreshing, obviously, and they tend to have a smaller percentage of alcohol than more robust cocktails, since day-drinking in the sun often just leads to naps.
Please check out the whole article at Sloshed: How to Make the Perfect Summer Drink Out of Anything — Grub Street New York.