Thursday, June 24, 2010

What I Will Be Drinking This Summer

Some people have a summer drink. A certain bottle of Rose they like, or a beloved hot-weather cocktail. My life's not that simple. I know of too many excellent options to narrow it down to such a fine point. Which can be a good thing—variety and spice of life and all that.

But I do have a kind of handle on things and here's a list of what I fully expect to be the regular rotation from now until Labor Day, some of it old, some new.


Southside. This is, to me, simply the most delightful, piquant and flavorful of the summertime cocktails. It takes a bit of time, muddling those limes and mint leaves. My version is particularly involved, as it require lime and lemon. But it's worth the effort.

Pimm's Cup. For me, it's not summer without Pimm's Cups. I opt for ginger ale over lemonade.

Rose: Rose, of course, Rose. It's a cliche, but where would we be without pink wine when the sun beats down and we're feeling sluggish. My favored label of this summer: 2009 Channing Daughters Rosato di Refosco, made in Long Island with a Friulian grape variety. But I'm sure I'll drink others.

Lambrusco. I finally found one I like and respect. The Lini 910 Lambrusco Bianco, a white version of the Italian quencher.


Becherovka and Tonic: Pair tonic with this cinnamon-y Czech liqueur and you have one tasty concoction. You won't be able to stop drinking it. The Czechs call it a Concrete. It's much lighter than that name connotes.

Gin and Tonic: New because I'm making them this summer with Beefeater Summer, a new expression of the London dry gin made with hibiscus, elderflower and black current. I usually am suspect of new spins on classics. It usually marks a step down. Not this time. Light and lively.

Cocchi Americano: Old in Italy, new to the U.S. as of this year. It's Lillet with bite, with extra personality. It's addictive. Drink it straight on the rocks.


Hum Liqeuer and Ginger Ale: In theory, because the stuff is not available in New York yet, only Illinois. Delicious. Anyone out there taking a flight from Chicago to New York with some extra room in their luggage?

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