The Drinks of Summer
Light spirits, fruit juices and plenty
of flavors…summer sipping is on the way
Chill out the coffee and crank up the blenders. Stock up on juices and syrups and double up on the fruits. Increase your stock of light spirits and bubbly and prepare the ice machines for extra duty. Because the drinks of summer are coming.
What your thirsty customers think of when they think of summer beverages depends on concept, region and demographic group. But it’s clear that those potent Alternatinis and undiluted spirits take a back seat in the hot months to more festive and thirst-quenching concoctions.
In New York, creative bartenders are getting ready to offer last year’s big hits, the spirited ice cream float. Across the country, old reliable blended drinks are facing the challenge of new recipes that take advantage of the wide assortment of flavors provided by syrups and schnapps. The plain old Long Island Ice Tea has been tuned up, and sparkling wine, whether French Champagne, Italian Prosecco or Spanish Cava, has become an essential ingredient in tall summer coolers.
As customers also look for more up-scale non-alcohol beverages, introducing a few alcohol-free cocktails may spur sales in unexpected ways: at the recent Cheers Beverage Conference in Las Vegas, Red Robin exec Neil Culbertson pointed out that in the company’s Mad Mixologist program, non-alcohol drinks out sell alcohol-based drinks two to one.
ICE CREAM DELIGHTS
Root Beer Chill
(Kelly Dick and Ken Ries, Ground Round, Waterbury, CT)
1 1/2 oz. root beer schnapps
3 oz. root beer
1 oz. cream
scoop vanilla ice cream
Blend all in blender and top with whipped cream.
Pineapple Rum Float
(Christophe Toury, Fifty Seven Fifty Seven, NYC)
2 oz. pineapple juice
1 1/2 oz. coconut rum
1 tablespoon simple syrup
2 small scoops vanilla ice cream
3 oz. sparkling water
Mix pineapple juice, rum and syrup in a pitcher. Scoop the ice cream into large Martini glass, add the fruit juice mixture and top with sparkling water.
(Rob Barber, Red Lobster, Yakima, WA)
3/4 oz. Frangelico
3/4 oz. Kahlua
4 oz. Island Oasis ice cream base
Pour all ingredients into a blender cup, add two cups crushed ice and blend. Pour into a tall glass and garnish with whipped cream and nut toffee mix.
Chocolate Ice Cream Float
(Ann Michele Andrews, Judson Grill, NYC)
3 scoops chocolate ice cream (about 6 oz.)
1/3 cup chocolate syrup
1 oz. Jack Daniel’s
8 oz. seltzer
Place two scoops of ice cream into a Pilsner glass. Pour the syrup over the ice cream, followed by the Jack Daniel’s and the seltzer. Stir until well blended. Add the remaining ice cream and serve.
The Newport Beachside
(Four Seasons Hotel, Newport Beach, CA)
1 1/2 oz. Bacardi Limon
1 oz. melon liqueur
4 oz. Island Oasis Strawberry mix
4 oz. Island Oasis Raspberry mix
dash coconut cream
Blend ingredients and pour into a Hurricane or Margarita glass. Garnish with fresh whole strawberry.
1 oz. Cruzan coconut rum
1 oz. Cruzan banana rum
3 oz. pineapple juice
1 oz. Coco Lopez
1 oz. raspberry juice
1 scoop ice
grenadine and coconut shavings
Add all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Rim Hurricane glass with grenadine and coconut shavings. Pour and serve.
1 oz. Stoli Vanil vodka
1/2 oz. Beefeater gin
1/2 oz. Hiram Walker triple sec
2 oz. orange juice
Mix all ingredients but the cherry in a blender with ice and blend until smooth. Garnish with the cherry.
Malibu Rum Shortcake
2 parts Malibu rum
1 part Smirnoff vodka
2 parts milk
Add all ingredients to a blender filled with one cup ice. Blend until smooth and serve in a tall glass garnished with a strawberry.
(Nacional 27, Chicago)
3/4 oz. Bacardi Limon
1/2 oz. passion fruit juice
6 oz. Cava (Spanish sparkling wine)
Shake and strain rum and juice into a Martini glass. Fill with Cava and garnish with orange wheel and cherry.
3/4 oz. Gran Gala Liqueur
1/2 oz. peach schnapps
Build drink in a Champagne flute. Fill with Champagne and garnish with a lemon twist.
Monin Classic Bellini
5 oz. sparkling wine or Prosecco
1 oz. Monin Peach or Raspberry
Pour syrup and chilled sparkling wine into a tulip glass. Stir and serve.
1 oz. cognac
1/2 oz. orange juice
1/2 oz lemon juice
Shake with ice the cognac, lemon juice and orange juice. Strain into a large Martini glass and top with Champagne. Garnish with lemon peel.
1 oz. Lillet infused with fresh ginger
3 oz. Champagne
Garnish w/ long thin slice of fresh ginger. Serve in a Champagne flute
1 oz. amaretto
1 oz. peach schnapps
splash orange juice
4 oz. Perrier
In a cocktail shaker partially filled with Perrier ice, mix amaretto, peach schnapps and orange juice. Shake well and pour mixture into an Old-Fashioned glass and top with Perrier. Garnish with a twist.