The Modern Mixologist – Summer 08

Cool Days of Summer

“Summer is the time when one sheds one’s tensions with one’s clothes, and the right kind of day is jeweled balm for the battered spirit. A few of those days and you can become drunk with the belief that all’s right with the world.” – Ada Louise Huxtable

With the coming of warmer weather not only will we be shedding our winter coats for Hawaiian shirts and sun dresses but we will also have those wonderful, fresh fruits of summer to introduce to our cocktail shakers. Some of the most fun I have is going to the farmers market and picking out seasonal fruits at the peak of ripeness and working them into a refreshing, fresh drink. Dust off the hammock, fire up the grill and slather on the SPF…it’s time to delight in the sultry days of summer! What’s on the menu? Consider handcrafted lemonade and ice-cold watermelon…better yet, how about the adult beverage equivalent thereof? The Zig Zag is a crisp, ultra refreshing summertime cooler developed to feature both.



1 ½ oz Belvedere Cytrus Vodka
¾ oz Cointreau
3 oz fresh pressed watermelon juice
2 oz fresh homemade lemonade

In a mixing glass add Belvedere Cytrus, Cointreau, watermelon juice and homemade lemonade; shake with ice until well blended, strain into an ice filled goblet. Garnish with a watermelon spear and sprig of mint.


Cut the top off a watermelon (approx. 4 inches) and reserve as the base. Carefully scoop all the meat out of the watermelon (use to make juice) leaving the body intact. Use the recipe below to make a large batch of the Zig Zag cocktail. Mix the drinks and pour into the watermelon punch bowl. Garnish with slices of lemon and lime, serve in ice filled glasses.

1 fifth Belvedere Cytrus Vodka
12 oz Cointreau
3 pints fresh watermelon juice
2 pints homemade lemonade

The Sunsplash, with its vibrant display of color, delicious balance of fruit flavors, and slightly tempered kick is just right for your next poolside gathering. So, if you are looking for the perfect warm weather, “fun in the sun” sort of cocktail, this beverage just might do the trick. By all means, give it a try and see if you agree.

sunsplashThe Sunsplash

1 ½ oz Belvedere Pomarancza Vodka
½ oz Cointreau
1 ½ oz freshly squeezed orange juice
1 ½ oz cranberry juice
1 oz fresh lemon sour
Add above ingredients to an ice-filled mixing glass, shake until well blended, then strain into an ice-filled tumbler. Garnish with a slice of orange and a lemon spiral.

Growing up in Michigan, the coming of summer brought succulent, vine ripe strawberries that just explode with natural sweetness and flavor. Utilizing these memories, I created the 323 for bar Milano in New York as one of their signature cocktails.


2 oz Rosemary infused Hendrick’s Gin*
2 oz fresh lemon sour**
2 large, ripe strawberries, hulled and sliced
2 basil leaves
½ teaspoon of reduced balsamic vinegar
In a mixing glass of a Boston shaker, muddle strawberries, basil leaves and balsamic reduction; add Hendrick’s gin and fresh lemon sour. Shake until well blended. Double strain into a chilled cocktail coupe garnished with a strawberry heart.

*Hint: place a large sprig of fresh, rinsed rosemary in a liter of Hendrick’s and allow to infuse for 4-5 days in a cool place.

**Mix 2 parts freshly squeezed, filtered lemon juice with 1 part simple syrup. To make simple syrup dissolve 2 cups of granulated sugar in 2 cups of boiling water and allow to cool. Store in a sealed container in your refrigerator. Yields 3 cups of syrup.

Another short lived but delicious gift of summer is the fantastic variety of cherries that become available. Again, embrace the season and celebrate the cherry in all of its glory and flavor. The Bing Cherry Daiquiri is but one way to utilize this fabulous fruit.


2 oz Bing cherry infused 10 Cane Rum*
1 oz fresh lime juice, hand extracted
1 oz simple syrup
In the mixing glass of a Boston shaker add Bing cherry infused rum, lime juice and simple syrup; shake with ice until well blended. Strain into a chilled cocktail coupe and garnish with a pitted, fresh Bing cherry.

*To make infused rum simply pit 1 pound of Bing cherries and place in a glass 2 quart jar; cover completely with 1 liter of 10 Cane Rum. Place in a cool place and allow to infuse