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Summer Cocktails

Sip Sip Hooray! How to Make Bottled Cocktails

My college boyfriend and I used to make our own beer and wine and bottle them in our tiny little rundown apartment, which was more of a shack attached to the back of an old falling down frat house. (True story.) Making and bottling beer was something we loved doing, and while it’s not a hobby I’ve kept up, it was absolutely my initial inspiration for making my own bottled cocktails.

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Say Sayonara Summer with a Mango Sunrise Piña Colada

It’s hard to believe that we’re in the last few days of official summer before the calendar flips over to fall. With fall temperatures in the forecast it seems like the perfect time to raise one last glass of something summery and tropical. This my mango sunrise piña colada recipe! It’s fruity and sweet and a bit like a vacation in a glass.

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Rum Away with Me! Tiki Bar Inspired Mermaid Water Fish Bowl Drinks

There used to be a bar tucked into the hill on the walk up to the Carrier Dome where they served the most over the top fish bowl drinks. They were loaded with booze, topped with twisty neon straws and feature Swedish fish floating in brightly colored liquid. And they made the rest of the cold walk up the hill to watch Syracuse basketball a whole lot more entertaining. That bar has since closed their doors and I’ve since grown a bit older, but those cocktails still remain imprinted in my memory as legendary. Usually tiki bar inspired and tropical flavored, there’s nothing quite like a good fish bowl cocktail. Until today, because I’ve gone and made them even better. These mermaid water fish bowl cocktails are the slightly classier, fairly grown adult version. Fair warning – they’re still loaded with booze. Oops!

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Summertime and the Sippin’ is Easy: Blueberry Beet Gin Slushies

It was my dad who first introduced me to the beauty of really good gin cocktails. Late in my college career, I’d go home summers to work an internship at a local architecture firm. My dad and I would often meet on the back porch in the evening after work and he’d make us each a perfect gin and tonic. Perfectly refreshing. Perfectly summer. I’ve been a gin fan ever since. But today I’ve upped the game on the classic gin and tonic with these blueberry beet slushies made with Prairie Organic gin. They may just be the single tastiest cocktail I’ve ever concocted and with blueberries currently in season, you’re going to want to fire up that blender!

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A Farm to Table Strawberry Lemonade Moscow Mule

When you live in the Northeast, you live every minute of summer to the fullest because while short, I’d argue that they’re some of the most beautiful summers of anywhere. It’s a season that brings me to life and rightfully so we make it a point to soak up every last second of the sunshine that we can. Hitting the weekly farmer’s market for freshly squeezed lemonade is one of my favorite summer traditions. They serve it up in big cups full of ice and you can sip it while you walk through the stalls collecting farm fresh produce for that night’s dinner. That farmer’s market lemonade is the inspiration behind this cocktail, made with the tastiest homemade strawberry lemonade and Prairie Organic vodka. Taking just a few minutes to make hand crafted cocktails is one of my favorite parts of a weekend happy hour. Fresh, farm grown ingredients totally elevate the cocktail sipping experience which is my way of saying, make this cocktail. Find the ripest local strawberries you can find, make them into lemonade and sip these Moscow mules all summer long.

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Say Yes to Summer with this Kiwi Lime Mint Sangria Recipe

Now that it’s unofficially summer, I think we can officially call it sangria season! It’s likely that sangria season is my favorite time of year. Fruity, boozy, winey, super refreshing and perfectly party-ready! Sangria is made for front porch sipping, slow and easy back patio happy hours, and prepping in advance for all of your summer parties. This kiwi limi mint sangria recipe might just be my favorite one I’ve whipped up yet! It’s made with fresh kiwi purée (which is a cinch to make) and loaded with refreshing lime and mint so it’s basically summer’s new best cocktail recipe. Don’t be intimidated by the kiwi purée, friends, please! The addition of simple but fresh ingredients like that make a cocktail recipe come alive and it’s really easy to do. Scout’s honor! (Ooo! Do we think I could earn a badge in cocktail mixing?!) I’ll toast to a long, hot awesome summer with a glass of this one, pals, I hope you do the same!

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Raspberry Swirl Pineapple Mango Margaritas

With Cinco de Mayo in just a few days, shouldn’t we be talking about margaritas? Well, you’re in luck! These raspberry swirl pineapple mango margaritas are everything you’ve been waiting for and more. I am such a fan of frozen cocktails in the spring and summer months, especially when I’m trying to channel those tropical vibes that we so desperately need here in our neck of the woods about now. (Although it’s finally warm this week! Hooray!)

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Cheers to the Sunshine State + The Ultimate Strawberry Mojito

When we travel to Florida to visit family, there’s this open air restaurant we love to frequent where you can sip cocktails overlooking the water and where time moves a little bit slower. Said restaurant is known for their insanely delicious strawberry mojitos to an extent that I’m pretty sure you’re crazy if you go there and order anything else. I’ve been playing around with strawberry mojito recipes for a bit and haven’t been able to nail one that’s as good as theirs. Until now! When we last went to Florida in January, I finally figured out what makes them tick. It’s a combination of loads of fresh strawberries muddled with a big fistful of mint and then a homemade strawberry syrup that packs a ton of strawberry flavor. These are over the top refreshing and perhaps a bit dangerous for that reason! But nothing else quite says strawberry season like this mojito recipe. (Because I’m assured that spring will actually come some day and eventually we might even have a strawberry season. Who knew?!)

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Make Mine a Blueberry Mojito

You guys know by now that I simply can’t refuse a well-made summer cocktail. Trying out new recipes and making friends act as my personal test subjects while sipping cocktails on our back patio is one of my personal favorite things! Today I’ve teamed up with Master of Mixes to share this perfectly summery and seasonal blueberry mojito recipe with you. Because of their sincere commitment to quality, Master of Mixes allows you to enjoy naturally flavored, scratch-quality cocktails at home, even if you’re not like me and concocting your own simple syrups from scratch sounds like zero fun. And let’s be honest! Even if that is fun, sometimes you just want something quicker and easier that’s still crazy delicious, and that’s where this mojito comes into play!

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Coconut Pineapple Rum Slush

A few years ago Bob and I made our maiden voyage to Key West, which sparked a completely unexpected love affair with the Keys. I’ve been back since and have only fall more in love with the carefree, Cuban meets Caribbean vibe each time I go. This frozen tropical cocktail is entirely inspired by that same salt air in your hair, Jimmy Buffet music playing in the background experience that makes you never want to leave the Keys. In essence, this cocktail is a vacation in a glass. Because it’s sweetened with Truvia Nectar, it’s also a reduced sugar alternative to the typical sugar laden frozen drinks that seem to make the rounds ad nauseum in the summer months. Take it next level with a garnish of fresh pineapple and you’re ready for vacation mode.

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Summery Champagne Mojitos

There’s a great beachy, open air bar a few miles from where my sister lives in South Florida and the mojitos there are a force to be reckoned with. To be honest, I’m pretty sure there’s nothing special about their mojitos except for the fact that you sip them under palm trees overlooking the water, but that fact alone sets them apart. These mojitos are special not because they make palm trees appear in your backyard, but because they are made with champagne (or your favorite prosecco) and that elevates them entirely. You can skip the traditional rum or keep it in the mix. You can make one just for yourself or a pitcher for all your friends. (I’ve included recipe variations for all of the above.) The key is a good simple syrup, all the fresh mint and limes you can get your hands on and, of course, those bubbles. Bubbly makes everything better and these champagne mojitos are proof of that!

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