Category Archives: Summer

Tiki Cocktails; A day out in paradise…

Where has all the rum gone? – Jamaica, Guyana, Martinique, Cuba & Puerto Rico, that’s where!

Rum will forever be synonymous with beaches and the exotic getaway the Caribbean can envision...
Rum will forever be synonymous with beaches and the exotic getaway the Caribbean can envision…

There are not many Tiki themed cocktail bars in my local area [Sad face] and therefore my exotic getaways are restricted to what I make for myself,  unless I want a poorly made Pina Colada – everywhere sells those!

Unfortunately, for me at least, that means that certain products are only available seasonally and whilst most would argue that the need for a tiki cocktail in the winter is not quite like it is when in the height of summer, I feel that it’s my right to be able to get a decently made tiki cocktail whenever I want!

So whilst I struggle on with my local bars and pubs, trying ever so hard to find at least a good tiki cocktail, I dream of bigger and most definitely better things: A great tiki cocktail!

That usually means I’m left with gathering ingredients and making the drink myself, and that is exactly what I’ve done for the 3 cocktails used in this post…

Bars like this one, the Punch Tiki Bar (LA), are no where to be found down here in South East Kent :(
Bars like this one, the Punch Tiki Bar (LA), are no where to be found down here in South East Kent 😦

But first: What is a tiki cocktail? It’s all well and good me saying “tiki this” and “tiki that” but I suppose unless you have some context it could be a little over your head. Well let’s discuss what a tiki cocktail is and why they’re too important to be made poorly…


The Great American Tiki Rush

People will come for miles to get a taste of a great tiki cocktail...
People will come for miles to get a taste of a great tiki cocktail…

So whilst I yearn for well-made and great tasting tiki, I had a thought: What exactly makes a great Tiki cocktail? I mean I know how to make all the classic tiki cocktails: the Mai Tai, Zombie, even the often poorly made Pina Colada; but what is the history of this exotic cocktail genre? And what does it mean to drink a Tiki drink like the Mai Tai?

Well here I look to share some of the discoveries I’ve made whilst trawling through the endless recipe pages the internet unsurprisingly supplied… I’ll even throw in three (3) of my favourite classic tiki cocktails for good measure!

Forget the gold rush and mid-west gunfights; the biggest rush of recent American history was the rise of the Tiki cocktail. Tiki cocktails came from seemingly nothing and, spearheaded by two particular individuals, rose to become one of the most popular cocktail genres of the current time! But a little more about that a little later.

What tiki cocktails are meant to provoke are memories of exotic locations and beach side haunts. At the very least they’re meant to help take you away from the everyday trivialities of life.

Tiki cocktails are more than just another genre of cocktails, and it’s all too easy to think of them as just rum cocktails and this is the unfortunate trap a lot of bars that serve these cocktails fall prey to.

A tiki cocktail, by general definition is a cocktail that uses Jamaican rum, Martinique rum and then a combination of syrups, juices and other liqueurs. The importance in that definition is the first two ingredients: 2 types of Rum. Although other spirits are being used more and more – this is in no way a bad thing!

The overall definition is a little open to interpretation and whilst some die-hards will tell you that “a tiki cocktail simply has to contain rum” most bartenders and mixologists understand that restricting ones pool of inspiration is a bit short-sighted. After all you can make an old fashioned with rum, why not a tiki cocktail with scotch?

This Mai Tai shows how simple a rum tiki drink can be. There maybe a few ingredients but it's a simple mix, shake and serve routine...
This Mai Tai shows how simple a rum tiki drink can be. There maybe a few ingredients but it’s a simple mix, shake and serve routine…

However, that being said, almost every cocktail expert will tell you one thing: When getting into tiki drinks always start with rum and master the classics first and only then should you think about expanding into other spirits and liqueurs as ingredients…

It might seem a little contradictory but when you think about the most famous tiki cocktails they always almost contain rum as a base spirit. This is no coincidence as back during their infancy, tiki cocktails used rum exclusively. It’s only been in the most recent times that tequila, vodka and whisky – among other spirits – have been used. It is the classic nature of these cocktails, as well as other rum-based tiki cocktails, that give rise to the stigmata of using other spirits.

So let’s assume that you want to start out on your very first tiki cocktail adventure, and to do that you need to heed the advice of cocktail experts: Start with Rum…

The type(s) of rum you start with is important, if only for the sake of creating the best cocktails you can possibly make. This collection of 3 main types of rum should be enough to get you started and then, as stated above, you can expand to your own pace:

  • A rich Demerara-style rum from Guyana or a nice rhum agricole from Martinique – El Dorado 12YO rum is expensive, but one of the best rums out there, at least in this category
  • A rich Jamaican rumAppleton Estate ‘Special Jamaican Rum’ is a great choice, especially as it is readily available in most UK supermarkets
  • And, arguably the most overlooked rum for beginners: White rum. A white rum in the style of Cuba or Puerto Rico is the best choice – Brugal & Havana club are great brands to start with

Once you have the rum you simply need to pay a visit to your local supermarket/green grocers and do one of two things: Decide on your laziness level!

If you want truly authentic tiki cocktails, then you simply have to go full-fresh juice. To do this find the produce section of the shop and pick up some exotic fruits:

  • Pineapples, mangoes, passion fruit, dragon fruit, lychee, oranges, lemons, limes and of course coconuts. Feel free to experiment with literally any exotic fruit you can lay your hands on.

Then simply blend the ingredients up to create truly fresh fruit juice for your cocktails! You can also use chunks and slices of the same fruit for creating home-made sugar syrups, which can really help to add further depth in taste to your cocktails.

Failing that most supermarkets, at least here in the UK, stock ‘NFC – Not From Concentrate’ juices and I cannot state clearly enough that this is literally the lowest you should go when making cocktails. Juices from concentrates are a little cheaper but for truly authentic and, simply put, better tasting cocktails you really should get the juice as fresh as possible…

Everyone knows the fresher the juice the better. All I know for sure is that fresh-squeezed = better tasting.
Everyone knows the fresher the juice the better. All I know for sure is that fresh-squeezed = better tasting.

The only other things you need to make your tiki cocktails are:

  • Ice (cubed) – you will need the best quality you can find and for the sake of any blended drinks please use cubed ice rather than crushed! – Although if you require crushed by all means do get it, but do not use it in place of the cubed ice! Trust me you don’t want to blend crushed ice, unless you want to water out your drink…
  • Decent glassware and garnishes: Get a decent hurricane glass (or two) and also some nice straws. You can also go all out on the garnish, using umbrellas and various fruit twirls etc. but I prefer it when the motto less = more is in effect!

Once you have all the things mentioned above you’re ready to move onto the recipes!


So what are the most famous tiki cocktails?

Left to Right: Pina Colada, Mai Tai, Zombie...
Left to Right: Pina Colada, Mai Tai, Zombie…

Obviously everyone knows of the main 3 cocktails: The Mai Tai, The Zombie and of course that sleeper tiki big-hitter: The Pina Colada.

But not many people know how to make these cocktails properly. The recipes shared below are believed to be the original or, in case of the Mai Tai, the closest possible match using today’s ingredients…


How to make a Classic Tiki cocktail at home?

Rum + Fruit Juice + Syrup = COCKTAILS O’CLOCK!!!


Mai Tai

mai tai

Before we start I have to confess: This is not the original recipe. The original recipe calls for a type of rum no longer made, however the fusion of the two rums used is supposedly the closest you can get to the original. And like all things on this blog I’ve given this cocktail a teeny-tiny little fervent shaker tweak…

Recipe:

  • 1 measure Martinique Rum
  • 1 measure Jamaican Rum
  • 1 measure fresh Lime Juice
  • ½ measure Orgeat Syrup
  • ½ measure Cointreau

Garnish: Sprig of mint & fresh lime…

Method:

This cocktail is a simple yet effective mixture that is usually ruined by the type of ingredients used and not the method. As you’ll see below the method is pretty darn easy…

  • Combine all of the ingredients (except the garnish) in an ice filled shaker and shake well – for around 10-20 seconds [or until the tin ices over].
  • Strain the mixture into a rocks glass full of crushed ice and garnish with a sprig of mint and a lime wedge/wheel/twist [whichever you prefer].
  • Fervent Shaker teeny-tiny little tweak: Try floating some dark, high quality rum on top of the drink before garnishing… It’ll add a little richness to the final sips of this already awesome drink…

Zombie

Zombie Cocktail

Originally created by the original beachcomber himself, it contains a super-secret ingredient which for years was just that: secret. Turns out it was just a mix of grapefruit and cinnamon syrups!

Recipe:

  • 1.5 measures gold Puerto Rican Rum
  • 1.5 measures Jamaican Rum
  • 1 measure 151 Demerara Rum
  • ¾ measure fresh lime juice
  • ½ Dons Mix (Grapefruit & Cinnamon syrup mixture)
  • ½ measure Falernum liqueur
  • 1tsp Grenadine
  • 8 drops absinthe
  • 1 dash angostura bitters

Method:

  • Blend all the ingredients together, with ice, for about 5-10 seconds (high speed).
  • Pour the mixture into a chimney* glass and garnish with a sprig of mint!

* A chimney glass is a type of glass you are already probably aware of and, depending on their shape/size, are known by several names: The delmonico, The collins & The highball.


Pina Colada

Recipe:

  • 2 measures White Rum
  • 2 measures Coconut Cream
  • 2 measures Pineapple Juice
  • 100 grams crushed ice

Method:

  • Blend all of these ingredients together and strain into a well-chilled hurricane glass and garnish with a wedge of pineapple, a couple of cherries and, if you’re feeling exceptionally exotic, a decently sized pineapple leaf.

So there you go! 3 classic tiki cocktails 1 from each of the ‘fathers of tiki’ and of course everyone’s summer classic: the Pina Colada.

Tiki cocktails are more than just a rum mix; they’re an escape from reality and all things boring. They’re a chilled, and sometimes eclectic, mix of rum juice, syrup and of course exotic flavours. The next time you go out and about why not order a mai tai, or a pina colada? Or, and only if you’re feeling exceptionally brave, why not try a zombie or two? Although most places will only allow you a double tap…

Keep your eyes peeled for more Tiki fun coming up later this month, from the best tiki cocktails to the best rums to use in those cocktails and all sorts of other tid-bits. This month, come away with me and enjoy an escape like no other: Tiki Cocktails…

Cocktails O’Clock: I WANT SPIDERMAN!!!

“He doesn’t want to be famous? Then I’ll make him infamous” – J. Jonah Jameson


Marvel Themed Cocktails: Spiderman

The soon to be Avenger (rumoured) and his token cocktail…

Spiderman has long been my favourite superhero. I grew up reading the kids comic-magazines, watching the 90’s cartoon (yeah the one where Spidey goes full mutant-spider). This is the first if my themed cocktail post’s and I wanted it to be special. To me the epitome of a superhero is Spiderman. He’s young when he first gets his powers and abuses them somewhat. However through various tragedies he learns the truth behind that famous marvel line “With great power comes great responsibility”. Some say that phrase has since been overused but to me it’s all about a boy becoming a man, a super-heroic man.

So this post needed to be special, and the cocktail needed to be special. So I through caution to the wind and tried to create something perfect for the summer…

Here in the UK we’re having a bit of a torrid time of things, that’s my opinion on it anyway. Whilst everyone loves the lovely skin-crisping heat the summer sun brings and given our position geographically, we tend to end up having a sweat-pouring muggy month or two. The best type of cocktail during summers like these is one pack with ice and flavour. Below is something that, prepared properly, will rock your Spidey-loving world!

This is a ½ & ½ cocktail and will take some preparation. You will need a food processor/smoothie maker/blender to create this cocktail in all its glory…

The Spectacular Spiderman

Combining alcohol with a child favourite: the slushy drink... Genius I believe!
Combining alcohol with a child favourite: the slushy drink… Genius I believe!

Recipe:

Blue half – Blue Margarita:

1.5 measures Tequila

1 measure Blue Curacao,

1 measure Lime Juice

Red half –Red Set Punch:

1.5 measures Grenadine

1.5 measures Raspberry Vodka

1.5 measures White Rum

Method:

For the blue margarita half:

  • Blend the Tequila, Blue Curacao & Lime Juice with ice until the mixture is like a slush-drink.
  • Pour this into a tall sling glass, filling it halfway.

For the red set punch half:

  • Blend the grenadine, vodka and rum together with ice until the mixture is like a slushy-drink.
  • Top the sling glass up with the red mixture and garnish with a gummy spider and serve with a straw.

This cocktail is a bit of a blend of two fantastic cocktails. The blue half of the drink is a tweaked margarita cocktail, the tweak being the replacement of the triple sec with blue curacao. Using Blue Curacao instead of the triple sec merely tints the colour an electric blue…

The second half is red and the grenadine is the obvious colour additive here. This mix of Raspberry vodka and rum, combined with the grenadine adds a slightly fruity edge to the top of the drink.

This cocktail, made from two halves, starts off fruity and sweet and is relatively easy on the throat. However the blue section hides the kick and as you progress through the drink you’ll start to taste the blue margarita more and more. This is no coincidence. The drink is built for you to drink from the top to the bottom. You can do the reverse, and the drink will get easier the more you drink – but where’s the fun in that!?

Flip to reverse it... This cocktail works well with either red or blue on top...
Flip to reverse it… This cocktail works well with either red or blue on top…

This cocktail is a great little number for themed cocktail parties or for impressing your friends on a night in…

Until next week, drink well but drink responsibly!!!

10 COCKTAILS YOU SHOULD BE DRINKING THIS SUMMER… PART 2, 6-10

Carrying on from last weeks Summer themed post, this post supplies you with 5 more delicious summer themed (and inspired) cocktails… Whilst they are all based on a different liqueur or spirit they are all refreshing, relatively simple and perfect for BBQ’s or Beaches. Whatever your fancy…

Recipe #6: Midori – Midori La Pomme

20ml Midori

30ml Cognac (Brandy)

15ml Lemon Juice

Top up – Apple Cider

Garnish: Apple wedge

Method:

  • Fill a tall glass with ice cubes.
  • Build the ingredients as listed in the glass.
  • Stir well and serve with a straw and garnish with an apple wedge.

This is one of the stranger cocktails on the list, as it combines Midori, Cognac and Cider… Whilst most people would assume Calvados would be a better fit, I find it to be too sickly combined with the Midori & apple cider. Using Cognac helped balance the cocktail and results in a crisper more refreshing cocktail…

Recipe #7: Cointreau – Cointreau Fizz

50ml Cointreau

25ml Lime Juice

Top up Club Soda

Method:

  • Fill a glass with ice and squeeze in (and drop in) 4 lime wedges.
  • Pour in the Cointreau and stir very gently so as to mix the ingredients with the ice.
  • Top with the Club Soda and garnish with a wheel of lime and a straw.

This cocktail is a new classic just waiting for the official nod. This became Cointreau’s signiture cocktail a few years back when they wanted to show off how versatile their spirit was, and that you could use it as a standalone spirit. “Much more than just a Triple Sec…”

As simple as can be, it just uses 3 ingredients, this cocktail delivers a crisp slice of summer in a glass. Whilst this particular blend might not seem very adventurous, check out the following link to see what other tweaks on this base cocktail Cointreau have created (I particularly like the Cucumber & Mint version)…

Cointreau Fizz Variations

Recipe #8: Whisky – Hard Water Presbyterian

This cocktail is a tweaked recipe from the Presbyterian, a classic whisky cocktails...
This cocktail is a tweaked recipe from the Presbyterian, a classic whisky cocktails…

2 measures scotch whisky

¾ measures Lemon Juice

½ measure ginger syrup

2 measures Club Soda

Method:

  • Fill a Collins glass with ice cubes and add the club soda – leave to one side.
  • Combine the remaining ingredients in an ice filled cocktail shaker.
  • Shake well for around 5-10 seconds* and then double strain into the tall glass.
  • Garnish with a piece of candied ginger on a skewer and serve with a straw.

Recipe #9: Southern Comfort –Blackout Special

A Southern Comfort special, this cocktail is perfect for long summer evenings and keeping you sane during a genuine blackout...
A Southern Comfort special, this cocktail is perfect for long summer evenings and keeping you sane during a genuine blackout…

50ml Southern Comfort

12.5ml Fresh Lime Juice

25ml Sprite/7up

25ml Cranberry Juice

Method:

  • Build in a tall glass over ice, start with the SoCo.
  • Then add in the lime, Sprite and cranberry juice.
  • Garnish with a sprig of cranberries and a wedge of lime.

This refreshing cocktail is a little simpler than most, but it has that refreshing fizz to it that also has a little sugary hit. The Blackout Special is perfect for those long summer evenings and BBQ’s with neighbours.  Hell it’s even a fitting perk up if a blackout actually hits…

Recipe #10: Passoa – Passoa Rosa Fizz

This Passionfruit based cocktail is a perfect refresher for BBQ's and summer parties in the city.
This Passionfruit based cocktail is a perfect refresher for BBQ’s and summer parties in the city.

50ml Passoa

100ml Grapefruit Juice

Top up club soda

Method:

  • Combine the first 2 ingredients one at a time over ice in a tall glass.
  • Top up with the soda and garnish with a passionfruit husk float*.

This is another build-it-yourself cocktail and that means it’s brilliant for gatherings. You can make them in bulk and relatively quickly so it’s a perfect drink for BBQ’s, Parties etc… However if this drink is your own and you want to make it a little more special why not turn the garnish into a ‘bomb’ float?

Simply fill half a passionfruit husk with Triple Sec, or another similar liqueur (to be fair most liqueurs work here) and sink it just before drinking…

So there you go! 10 fabulous cocktails for your summer Party/BBQ/Evening… What’s more why don’t you try infusing some Vodka and try out a few tweaks on these classic recipes:

Vodka Summer Cocktails

Please remember to drink responsibly as you’ll want to be sober enough to try the cocktails on the next post!

10 Cocktails you should be drinking this summer… Part 1, 1-5

Summer is the time of cocktails and outdoor living, below are 5 cocktails you definitely should be drinking this summer...
Summer is the time of cocktails and outdoor living, below are 5 cocktails you definitely should be drinking this summer…

So you’re at a friends’ BBQ one summer’s evening and everyone is having a nice time, the sun is shining, there’s a gentle breeze rolling through the pine trees surrounding the pool, and although the kids are screaming, they’re having fun.

You’ve spoken to all your friends, caught up on gossip and everyone’s enjoyed the hosts’ BBQ skills. But now the temperature has chilled slightly and the sun has started to set. The Kids have gone home to the supervision of their child-minders and that leaves all you adults about with a choice: Lemonade and soft drinks… Or the hard stuff?

But that decision is made for you; out comes the hosts’ and their stash of liquor. Vodka, Tequila, Rum, Triple Sec & plenty of other obscure, highly alcoholic elixirs that do not look healthy at all…

So in come the dedicated spirit drinkers, taking their share of their designated poison, rum, vodka – it doesn’t matter there’s plenty for everyone. What really gathers your attention is not the boring spirit drinkers, they can keep their Bourbon, Neat; you want what’s in that glass on the opposite table: A tall mountain of a glass, with sweeping curves and a cool orange nectar, swirling with a red syrupy surprise… Of course I’m talking about a Tequila Sunrise – the epitome of pool-side tropical cocktails…

But did you know that the cocktails available to you for your summer evenings are not restricted to generic boring simple cocktails. Sure they look great and every now and then they’re great to enjoy but if you really want to impress everyone you know, why not give these few recipes a little tipple…

Recipe #1: Limoncello – Limoncello Citrus Cooler

Blending Sorbet with a stunning cocktail results in a sumptuously sweet treat perfect for the summer time...
Blending Sorbet with a stunning cocktail results in a sumptuously sweet treat perfect for the summer time…

20ml Limoncello

20ml Maraschino Liqueur

40ml Lemon Juice

1 scoop mandarin sorbet

1 teaspoon marmalade

2 dashes hibiscus bitters

Method:

  • Shake all the ingredients with ice.
  • Strain into a rocks glass containing a large ice cube (ice-balls work well here)
  • Garnish with a pair of maraschino cherries and an orange twist.

This cocktail blends sweet Limoncello with some other sweet, citrus flavours and creates a cocktail that is not as sweet as it looks to be. The ingredients blend well, as mentioned, but you can still separate the intricate flavours of a high quality limoncello and the maraschino liqueur. The hibiscus bitters lends a bitter, yet exotic fragrance to the drink. This is a great drink to have in your repertoire for a romantic evening date…

Recipe #2: Gin – Italian Collins

A classic Gin cocktail tweaked with some Italian twists...
A classic Gin cocktail tweaked with some Italian twists…

1 measure Sipsmith Gin

¾ measure Limoncello

¼ measure fresh lemon juice

4 measures Club Soda

Method:

  • Mix the first three ingredients together and shake well, over ice, for around 10-15 seconds.
  • Strain into a tall glass filled with ice.
  • Top up with club soda and garnish with a thin slice of lemon peel.

Recipe #3: Vodka – Wake County Cooler

From the USA this brilliant cocktail uses infused vodka, a trend gaining a lot traction...
From the USA this brilliant cocktail uses infused vodka, a trend gaining a lot traction…

Black Tea infused Vodka

Sugar Syrup

Lemon Juice

Club Soda

Method:

(Sweet) Black Tea Vodka:

  • Combine 750ml Vodka with 150ml loose-leaf black tea and allow to infuse (should take around 2 hours).
  • Then, separately: Combine 60ml water with 60g sugar and mix into a sugar syrup.
  • Combine the sugar syrup with the vodka and mix well.

Main Cocktail:

  • Half fill a Collins glass with crushed ice.
  • Add 50ml of the infused vodka to the glass.
  • Then add 12.5ml of lemon juice.
  • Top up with the club soda and garnish with a lemon wedge and mint sprig.

If you create the full amount above (750ml) you’ll have plenty to share (or keep for yourself). 

One of the best things about this cocktail is that you have to infuse your own Vodka. As a home-taught cocktail maker one of my favourite hobbies is the infusing of neutral alcohol. Not only do you end up with something delicious and flavour-fuelled, most of the time you improve the original drink (obviously you don’t want to use top end Vodka for this sort of infusion). If you have enough forethought to purchase some nice kilner-jars (think along the lines of pressure topped bottles – like Grolsch beer) you can share out your good infusions for family gifts and even age some spirits…

Give it a go, you’ll be surprised what you can come up with!

Recipe #4: Licor 43 – Carta Marina

Using 2 of my favourite spirits, this cocktail is quite literally the one you have to try...
Using 2 of my favourite spirits, this cocktail is quite literally the one you have to try…

1 ½ measures Kraken Black Spiced Rum

¾ measures Licor 43

¾ measures Lemon Juice

¼ measure Aperol

2 dashes Cardamom bitters

Garnish: Vanilla Bean & orange twist.

Method:

  • Shake all the ingredients together over ice for 15-20 seconds (or until the tin ices over).
  • Strain into a coupe cocktail glass and garnish with a vanilla bean wrapped inside the orange twist.

This cocktail mixes two of my favourite spirits in Kraken & Licor 43. And boy do they blend well! This looks like an odd mixture of spirits and bitters but if shaken well (and properly) this drink elevates you to another level. When a drink can supply you with a mix of refreshment, great taste and an almost bottomless depth in quality you know you’ve hit gold; with the Carta Marina you have some good old US/Mediterranean Gold. If you only drink one cocktail of this list: Pick this one!

Whilst Licor 43 is one of the lesser known liqueurs outside of Spain, it is also one of the best, at least in my opinion, in the world...
Whilst Licor 43 is one of the lesser known liqueurs outside of Spain, it is also one of the best, at least in my opinion, in the world…

Recipe #5: Rum – Daisy De Santiago

A funny little twist on the Mojito, the Daisy De Santiago is a fantastic blend of refreshing and crisp.
A funny little twist on the Mojito, the Daisy De Santiago is a fantastic blend of refreshing and crisp.

40ml Bacardi Superior White Rum

20ml fresh lime juice

5ml sugar syrup

15ml Yellow Chartreuse

Garnish:  fresh berries & a sprig of mint.

Method:

  • Add the rum, sugar syrup & lime juice to a shaker filled with ice and shake well – for around 20-30 seconds.
  • Fill a wine goblet with crushed ice and strain the mixed liquid into the glass.
  • Garnish with the sprig & berry bouquet and then float the yellow Chartreuse on top of the drink.

The Daisy de Santiago is possibly one of the freshest and most refreshing drinks I’ve had the pleasure of sipping in a long time. It’s got a lovely rum kick from the Bacardi yet it’s sweet and almost minty after taste compliments most summer evenings. A difficult drink to balance perfectly but one that is very much worthwhile mastering.

Margaritas Three Ways – A Cinco De Mayo Special

Today is the 4th of May 2014. That means Cinco De Mayo is literally around the corner! Whilst not usually a huge deal here in the UK, they revel in Mexican culture across the pond so it’s only natural they have a whole day set aside for a celebration of sorts.

Image
Whilst not necessarily celebrated the same way in Mexico and other Latin American countries, Cinco De Mayo is a festival celebrating all of the finer things Mexican culture has to offer the world.

Whether it’s Chocolate, Spicy Food or even a certain infamous Mexican spirit (or 2) Cinco De Mayo is a celebration and a time for getting together with friends and family…

So what are the 3 margaritas I have in store for you? Well let’s start with a classic recipe and tweak it a little…

Mi Casa Tequila:

Mi Casa Tequila is an extremely high quality 100% Agave Tequila, obviously from Mexico, and is unfortunately not readily available on the UK Market it can be found readily across the USA so if you plan on heading out there any time soon, be sure to pick a bottle up!

It’s an estate-craft tequila from a family run business and has wone numerous awards for their utterly fantastic tequila(s). You can find their page here, but be sure to check out their signature margarita before you do:

Mi Casa Margarita

Recipe:

2 measures Mi Casa Reposado

1 measure St. Germain

¾ measure Fresh Lime Juice

Image
Reposado Tequila always adds a slight depth to the drink, making it even more awesome!

Method:

–  Mix with ice in a shaker and shake until the tin ices over.

–  Strain into a cocktail glass and garnish with a Lime wedge and fresh sprig of elderflower.

This is a refreshing take on a classic margarita uses the best Elderflower liqueur on the market and awesome tequila to create something familiar yet refreshingly different.

Try it this Cinco De Mayo or any other spring/summer evening it will be a refreshing break from your normal cocktail intake…

Margarita Picante

Recipe:

3 Slices red chilli pepper

2 measures 100% Blanco Tequila

¾ measure Cointreau

½ measure lime juice

½ measure sugar syrup

1 pinch cilantro

Image
This Margarita is dangerously spicy, if you like your drinks hot then this is the one for you!

Method:

–  Combine all the ingredients over ice and shake until the tin ices over.

–  After filling a small rocks glass with cubed ice (and a few slices of red chilli should you prefer*) strain the drink into the glass and garnish with a chilli slice on the rim of the glass.

*The fresh chilli in the glass will add an undercurrent of heat and is recommended for those who love their spicy flavours. Feel free to leave it out if, like me, you prefer a little less heat.

This drink is what it says: Spicy. It holds no punches and can bring a person to tears if they don’t respect it. Using a top quality brand of 100% Blanco Tequila (what else) this drink really is something a little spicy; just the thing to celebrate Mexican culture this Cinco De Mayo…

Roasted Blueberry Basil Margarita

Recipe:

2 measures Grand Marnier

1 ½ measures Blanco Tequila (100% Agave)

2 measures Lime Juice

2 ½ measures Blueberry & Basil Flavoured Sugar Syrup

Garnish: Fresh Whole Blueberries, Basil leaves & Sliced lime. And a Salt/Sugar rim (3:2 Ratio).

Image
So here is the oddball… Sweet & Savoury fuse into something rather special in this magical Margarita – Perfect for headlining your Cinco De Mayo…

Method:

–  Rim a large rocks glass with the salt/sugar mixture (use the lime as adhesive).

–  In a cocktail shaker combine the Grand Marnier, Tequila & Lime Juice, shaking `until the shaker ices over.

–  Fill the glass with ice and then strain in the drink.

–  To garnish; add a blueberry & Lime peel skewer and a fresh sprig of Basil to the top of the drink.

–  Serve with a straw.

This drink is remarkably balanced considering the blueberries are roasted, it’s very easy to over-do them and turn them too bitter for the drink. However done right, the basil and blueberry work wonders for the tequila.

It’s a special little recipe I came across a few months back, tried and loved. It’s perfect for Cinco De Mayo and has a refreshing summer evening feel about it, which means you don’t have to wait too long before you can have another one!

So there you go, 3 margaritas; 3 very different cocktails. The best thing about these drinks is that once Cinco De Mayo is over you can continue enjoying them time and time again. Whether you’re a thrill seeking Picante Margarita, or a sweet and slightly roasted blueberry margarita; there’s a drink here for you…

If you’d like to know how to make the Blueberry-Basil Sugar Syrup then click here and roast away…

Links for further reading, original recipes, pictures etc…

Original Recipes & Pictures:

Roasted Blueberry Basil Margarita

Margarita Picante

Cinco De Mayo Facts

Mi Casa Tequila – Check out their Mission Statement 🙂

Tequila Summer Cocktails

Do you know what the best thing about Tequila is? It’s perfect for sharing.

It’s a rustique, down to earth (literally) spirit full of flavour. Keeping this in mind I’ve gathered (what I feel are) 10 of the best summertime tequila cocktails… I won’t spoil the surprise, but the top spot belongs to my very own creation… (Yeah, Yeah I know it was a fix from the start, but there are still 9 other fantastic cocktails).

10. Santa Maria

Serves 1

45ml Reposado Tequila*

30ml White Port

15ml Velvet Falernum

15ml Simple Syrup

1 lemon – Juiced

Top up Ginger beer

Taking inspiration from the Tequila Highball, this cocktail mixes intricate flavours with sweet and spicy ingredients and tops it off with a great Reposado (or ‘gold’) Tequila.

*Use a good quality reposado, preferably not Jose Cuervo (use a brand like El Jimador or Cazadores – take a look at my blog on some of the better tequilas available – scroll down to after the dessert: https://theferventshaker.wordpress.com/2013/05/05/3-course-cocktails-cinco-de-mayo-especial/)

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No.9: Tequila-Cranberry Cooler

 9. Tequila-Cranberry Cooler

Serves 4

150ml Blanco (silver) Tequila

50ml Campari

250ml cranberry juice

125ml Fresh Orange Juice

60ml Fresh Lime Juice*

Garnish:

60g caster sugar

Lime Wedge

4 x cocktail cherries (with stems)

Garnish: Wipe the lime wedge around the rims of all 4 of the glasses and then dip them in the caster sugar. Drop in a cocktail cherry just before serving.

Cocktail: Mix all the main ingredients together in a jug (over ice) and divide equally among the 4, ice-filled, glasses.

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No. 8: Red Ruby Tequila Cocktails

8. Red Ruby Tequila Cocktails

Serves 4

250ml Reposado Tequila

750ml Ruby Red Grapefruit Juice

4 tablespoons Fresh Lime Juice

Mix the ingredients in a jug, over ice, and divide equally into 4 separate glasses. Garnish with an Orange twirl…

Top Tip: Using Reposado (rested) tequila really add some fantastic flavour (and a nice little kick) to this already great drink. Add a little splash of soda water to make it a little more refreshing…

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No. 7: Margarita, with Chilli & Cucumber…

 7. Classic (Perfect) Margarita

Serves 1

Drinks as particular as this require a very well balanced combination of ingredients, and for this reason I have used the term ‘measure(s)’ so as its clear that for every measure of tequila you use the relative amounts of Lime & Cointreau…

1.5 measures Silver (Blanco) Tequila

1 measure Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice

0.5 measures Cointreau (try not to use triple sec)

Shake the ingredients over ice, until the tin is well iced. Strain the mixture into a salt rimmed, margarita glass (or small rocks glass for a slightly different look).

Top Tip: Only salt rim half the glass in salt. This way the consumer of the drink can decide on how much salt they want.

Flavoured recipes: There are literally hundreds of flavoured margarita recipes out there and I’ll be honest, most of them are awful…

Some, however, are surprisingly refreshing; like the Chilli & Cucumber Margarita.

The best thing about this recipe is that all you’re actually doing is adding some a cucumber & Chilli mix into a classic Margarita recipe (like the one above).

Here’s how you prepare one, for yourself (or friends):

1)      Chop up some chilli (or use dried chilli flakes if you’re too lazy) and mix with some diced (de-seeded & peeled) cucumber,

2)      Leave to chill for between 2-4 hours.

3)      Then just add a couple of tablespoons to your shaker before mixing up your margarita and mix away!

4)      Enjoy you’re rather different Margarita.

 

6. Classic Tequila Slammer

Serves 1

1 Part Tequila

1 Part Soda Water

Build in a glass, cover with a napkin, lightly slam on the table and then take it down in one gulp.

Top Tip: For a twist on this classic cocktail; try using flavoured sodas. Grapefruit & Orange an easy twist, but for some great tasting drinks be a little wild, try something like hibiscus soda or lychee.

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No. 5: Tequila Sunrise

 5. Tequila Sunrise

Serves 1

150ml Orange Juice*

1 teaspoon Sugar Syrup (simple syrup)

35ml Tequila

1 teaspoon Grenadine Syrup

Garnish: 1 slice of lime

Combine the orange juice, tequila and sugar syrup over ice in a glass, and then gently pour in the grenadine. Garnish with a slice (wheel) of lime.

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No. 4: La Pinela

 4. La Pinela

Serves 1

Drink: 45ml Silver (Blanco) Tequila

45ml Fresh Pineapple Juice

15ml Licor 43

15ml Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice

1 teaspoon Cinnamon Syrup

Garnish: 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Lime wedge

Combine the sugar and ground cinnamon on a plate and wipe the rim of the glass with the lime wedge, then rim half of the glass with the sugar/cinnamon mixture and fill the glass with ice.

For the drink; combine all the other ingredients in a shaker and shake until the tin is iced (20-30 seconds). Strain it into the ice filled glass. Finish with a lime wheel.

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No. 3: The Paloma (with lime/tequila shot)…

3. Paloma

Serves 1

1 teaspoon fresh Lime Juice

30ml High-Quality Tequila (Silver)

Grapefruit Soda

Using a lime wedge, wipe the rim of half the glass, and dip it in coarse sea-salt. Then fill the glass with ice, adding the lime and tequila shortly after. Top up with the grapefruit soda and stir before serving. Garnish finally with a floating lime twirl/slice.

Top Tip: For an added kick, scrape out the inside of half a lime and fill it with a shot of tequila, floating this on top with a splash of salt will look stunning and supply you with an added ‘cocktail’ version of that classic tequila shot…

2. Zapatos Nuevos

Serves 2

120ml Silver (Blanco) Tequila

30ml Agave Nectar

500g (2 cups) Seedless Watermelon Cubes

30ml Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice

Garnish: 2 basil leaves

Fill two highball glasses with ice and leave to one side. Then blend all of the ingredients until smooth and pour into the ice filled glasses. To garnish, gently slap the basil leaves between your hands and wedge just inside the glass for an added herb-hit…

1. Sonoran Iced-Tea

Serves 1

25ml Kahlua Coffee Liqueur

25ml Disaronno Amaretto

12.5ml Silver Tequila

12.5ml Lime Juice

60ml Fresh Cranberry Juice

OR

60ml POM Pomegranate Juice

Combine all of the ingredients in a shaker and shake until the tin is well iced. Strain into a tall glass filled with crushed ice. Serve with 2 straws and garnish with a lime wedge and cocktail cherry.

Top Tip: For a slightly different version try substituting POM: Fresh Pomegranate Juice in for the cranberry juice, or even go half ‘n’ half (30ml of each).

Gin Summer Cocktails… Classic British Cocktails

10. GINger juice cocktail

50ml Plymouth Gin

25ml Ginger Liqueur

15ml Lemon Juice (fresh)

15ml Sugar Syrup

2 Long thin slices of Ginger (optional garnish)

1 lemon wedge (optional garnish)

Combine in a shaker over ice, and shake until the tin ices over on the outside. Then strain into a small glass filled with crushed ice. Gently position the ginger slices around the outside of the inner glass (between the ice and the glass). Then top up with ginger ale and drop in a lemon wedge for garnish…

9. Beefeater Almond Iced Tea

60ml Beefeater 24 Gin

90ml Sencha Tea (chilled)

20ml Almond Syrup (Orgeat)

10ml Sugar Syrup

10ml Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice

Build all the ingredients in a tall ice-filled glass and then stir well before serving…  Garnish with a lemon wheel.

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Beefeater Almond Iced-Tea

8. Gin Fizz

45ml Gin

20ml Lemon Juice

15ml Sugar Syrup

Top up Soda Water

Shake the Gin, Lemon & syrup and strain into an ice filled glass. Top up with the Soda water and garnish with a wedge of lemon.

7. Citrus Crush

60ml Gin

30ml Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice

1 dash sugar syrup

Add all the ingredients to a glass filled with crushed ice and stir. Serve immediately. For a longer version; top up with the soda of your choice.

6. Damascan Punch

60ml Gin

60ml Pomegranate Juice (Use POM Juice)

30ml Lemon Juice (FS)

30ml Sugar Syrup

60ml Bitter Lemon(ade)

1 dash Angostura Bitters

Mix all of the ingredients by adding them to an ice-filled glass and stirring well. Garnish with a sprig of mint, fresh pomegranate & a wedge of lemon (all of these are optional).

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Damascan Punch

5. Classic G&T

60ml Gin

90ml Tonic water

Build over ice in a tall glass, garnishing with a lemon/lime wedge.

4. Tom Collins

45ml Gin

20ml Lemon Juice (FS)

15ml Sugar Syrup

60ml Soda Water

Add all the ingredients into an empty glass and stir. Add ice and then top up with the soda water, Garnishing with a lemon wheel.

3. Summer Breeze Punch (will serve 2-4)

60ml Beefeater Gin

30ml Lemon Juice (FS)

30ml Lillet Blanc

15ml Curacao (triple sec)

15ml Grenadine Syrup

120ml Vervain Tea (chilled) – Mint Tea also works well here!

Mix all of these ingredients over a large slab of ice in the serving bowl. For the fruit: Add Mint sprigs, lemon & lime wheels and your preferred selection of soft berries (I strongly suggest using strawberries).

2. Singapore Sling

40ml Gin

20ml cherry heering (cherry Brandy will suffice)

5ml Cointreau

5ml Benedictine

10ml Grenadine

80ml Pineapple Juice

30ml Lemon Juice

1-2 dashes angostura bitters

This drink is a bit of a legend. The above recipe is, as far as I know, the original. Any Singapore sling recipe without Benedictine is wrong. With that in mind, you can (if you do not have any at home) substitute it with 5ml of any other orange liqueur; Grand Marnier is a good call, so is mandarin napoleon, but adding another 5ml of Cointreau is acceptable.

Shake all the ingredients and strain into an ice-filled hurricane glass. Garnish with a pineapple chunk and maraschino cherry.

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Singapore Sling

1.Vesper

60ml Gordons Gin

20ml Stolichnaya Vodka

10ml Lillet Blanc

Stir* all the ingredients over ice and strain into a martini glass, garnishing with a lemon-peel twirl.

*for a more 007-esque experience you can shake this cocktail, but as most bartenders know; shaking a drink like this will dilute it and thus weaken the drink’s flavours… Stirring the drink cools the alcohol just the same, but does not dilute the drink as much…

Inspiration for these cocktails, including the pictures where taken from these websites (as well as my own mind in the case of recipes i created):

http://www.gintime.com/tag/summer-cocktails/

http://www.beefeatergin.com/

Vodka Summer Cocktails… Top 10

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Vodka – Historically a stereotypical part of the Russian diet, this ‘neutral’ grain alcohol can be mixed to create some of the best flavoured cocktails in the world…

Here over the next 10 drinks, you will see some of, what I think to be, the best vodka summer cocktails in the world…

10. Vodka Sea Breeze

2m Vodka

2m Cranberry Juice

2m Pineapple Juice

Lime wedge (garnish)

9. Voodoo

50ml Russian Vodka

50ml Mango Nectar

2 lime wedges

3 mint leaves

Top up soda water

Mint sprig (for garnish)

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8. Classic Caipiroska

50ml High grade vodka (Green Mark/42 Below)

½ lime (cut into wedges

2 tablespoons Muscovado sugar.

Squeeze then muddle the lime and sugar (use Agave Nectar for a smoother drink), then top up with crushed ice and pour over vodka. Stir and serve before the drink has time to dilute.

Top Tip: Use any citrus fruit you prefer here. I recommend any orange citrus fruit (oranges, mandarins, satsumas, tangerines & clems are all perfect choices as they offer slightly different flavours).

7.Mint & Cucumber Vodka Fizz

50ml Vodka

12.5ml Cointreau

1 teaspoon Sugar syrup

12 mint leaves

½ cucumber, sliced

25ml fresh squeezed lime juice

Cucumber Spear & Mint sprig (for garnish).

Muddle the cucumber slices and mint with the sugar syrup and top up with the alcohol and lime. Shake well and strain over crushed ice. Top up with Soda Water/Ginger ale and garnish with the cucumber spear and mint sprig.

Top tip: for added flavour (and a Mexican feel) use Agave Nectar and Agave Sec instead of Sugar Syrup and Cointreau respectively…

6. Lemon Drop

1 measure Vodka

½ measure Lemon Juice

1tsp Sugar syrup (1 tsp for every 1 measure of vodka)

Lemon twist for garnish

Shake, then strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a lemon twist. This is a sour drink so is best kept as more of a desert cocktail… You have been warned!

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A sour but satisfying cocktail…

5. Acapulco Zombie

20ml Vodka

20ml Tequila

20ml Gold Rum

40ml Orange juice

40ml Grapefruit Juice

1 small dash Crème de Menthe

Serving over ice in a tall glass, build this cocktail working your way down the list… Drop the crème de menthe in last and allow it to rest on top (after stirring the other ingredients first).

4. Cucumber Cooler

50ml Russian Vodka

15ml Sugar Syrup

12” Thin slice (long-side) cucumber

1 small slice (wheel – for garnish)

1/8 teaspoon of fresh thyme leaves.

Muddle the cucumber and thyme in a shaker; add the sugar syrup and vodka. Shake gently and pour over ice in a small goblet. Garnish with the cucumber wheel and a splash of soda water.

 

3. Cucumber & Ginger Fizz (up to 8 servings)

135ml Vodka

80ml ginger liqueur

top up Ginger Ale/Beer

2 limes (wedges – you should be able to get 8 per lime)

2 cucumbers (1 roughly chopped; 1 thinly sliced length-ways)

This is a two stage recipe and does require some prior preparation…

Stage one: Skin one of the cucumbers and dice loosely. Put the cucumber and all of the vodka into a glass container and refridgerate for 1-3 hours. When you’re happy with the strength of the ‘infusion’ stain and sieve the vodka into a separate container and refridgerate for a further 2 days, discard the cucumber.

Stage two: Peel the other cucumber length-ways and put 3 slices in each of the 8 glasses. Add to this 3 tablespoons (45ml) of the vodka to each glass and squeeze two of the lime wedges into the mixture (drop in the lime wedges for garnish also). Top up with crushed ice and add 10ml of the ginger liqueur (10ml per glass). Stir gently before topping up with Ginger Ale/Beer.

Serve with a straw and a cocktail stirrer.

2. Wallbanger 43

50ml High grade vodka

20ml Licor 43

75ml freshly squeezed Orange Juice

1. Classic Screwdriver

50ml Green Mark Vodka

100ml freshly squeezed Orange Juice

Orange Wedge (for garnish).

So there you go, 10 of the best vodka cocktails you can drink this summer. The screwdriver is my number one by a country mile, and that is not flattering (done right it genuinely is that good!).

I hope you enjoy them all as much as I do! Next up… Top 10 Gin Summer Cocktails…

Licor 43 Summer Cocktails

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Cuarenta Y Tres, a golden liqueur from a golden country…

So I wrote a post, way back at the beginning of my blogging life. Ever since then, it has gone from strength to strength. It has been, by far, my most viewed post (around 100-150 views ahead of my other posts – last count). So to celebrate I thought I’d put together my top ten (10) Licor 43 cocktails. There’s one rule: they’re all going to be summer cocktails. Of course they’ll be versatile, but primarily they’ll be superb for those chilled summer evenings…

Here’s a little tip before we start: Licor 43 (Cuarenta Y Tres) is a viscous, sweet, Orange & Vanilla* flavoured liqueur. Thus it can be substituted for other ‘similar’ liqueurs on the market. For example; the cocktail at no.8 shows Licor 43 replacing Cointreau, offering an alternative to those who are not fans of the famous French liqueur…

*Although Licor 43’s flavour is a combination of 43 different ingredients, the Orange and Vanilla flavours are arguably the most predominant.

Let’s Begin with a Brazilian Classic made the Spanish way;

10. Caipirinha 43

50ml Licor 43

½ Lemon squeezed

Top up sparkling water

Served over crushed ice (build it, don’t shake it)

 

9. Pascal

3m Licor 43

3m Midori (Melon Liqueur)

Top up fresh milk

 

8. Spanish Margarita

2m licor 43

4m tequila

6m Sweet & Sour Mix (lemon sugar syrup)

7. Dreamsicle

1m Licor 43

2m Fresh Milk

2m Fresh Orange Juice

6. Aquavit 43

3m Licor 43

2m Aquavit

2m Noilly Prat

1m Fresh Lime Juice

Top up Ginger Ale*

* I like to add a little splash of something at this point. Although Licor43 sugest the cocktail as is, I prefer a little fizz. Try adding either Soda water or ginger ale/beer (my personal preference). 

5. The Power of Cuarenta Y Tres

7m Licor 43

1m fresh Lime juice

8m Fresh cranberry juice

4m Passion Fruit Nectar

1m Caramel syrup

 

4. Key Lime Pie

1m Licor 43

1m Vodka

1m Fresh Lime Juice

3. Spanish Armada

2m Licor 43

1m Southern Comfort

3m Cranberry Juice

Top up ginger ale

 

2. Pile 43 (Long)

50ml Licor 43

50ml ginger ale

Now, I’m trying to be different with this list, I have tried and tested many a cocktail (licor 43 or none) but one I keep coming back to is the Cuba Libre… This next cocktail is my number one for 2 reasons: It combines a fantastic classic cocktail (conveniently my favourite one) with one of the best liqueurs in the world. The flavours work wonders and the simplicity of the drink means anyone can enjoy one if they wish to…

1. Cuba Libre 43

3m Licor 43

2m Dark Rum

12m Cola

Lemon Wedge

A few drops of fresh lime juice

Bonus cocktail:

When I went to Almeria (Southern Spain – the regional home of Licor 43), as part of my University course, they didn’t need to suggest this liqueur to me… I asked for it. The look of approval from the staff member serving me said it all. I asked for a simple mixture: 43 & Pepsi.

It’s not only simple, but superbly refreshing. I let my Uni friends all try it, and they all went and ordered one. This cocktail is a testament to not only the quality of the liqueur, but also its growing market here in the U.K.

Recipe:

50ml Licor 43

Top up Pepsi (original only)

for picture of most of these cocktails (so you know what they’re meant to look like please visit the cocktail section of licor 43: http://licor43.com/#/cocteles/)

Licor 43 Summer Cocktails: So I hope you enjoy this instalment! They are all fantastic cocktails, and all of them are perfect for the warm/british summer nights ahead. For the warmer nights, go for the fruitier/stonger drinks. For the ‘British Summer’ nights (aka Cold) go for the milky cocktails.

Next up: Vodka Summer Cocktails…

Cointreau Summer cocktails

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So summer is on its way, albeit in the traditional British ‘stealth mode’ way. As I write this it’s a slightly overcast day. The trees are rustling and yet my hand is cold… It’s because I have a fantastic “Cointreau fizz” cocktail (see below) in it! That’s right ladies and gentlemen, summer is here and that can mean only one thing: Cointreau cocktails rule supreme!

The following are, in my opinion, the best Cointreau cocktails you can order:

10. Kamikaze

20ml Cointreau

10ml Lemon Juice

40ml Vodka

Strong and volatile in the wrong hands, this cocktail should be feared as well as enjoyed. Shake and strain into a cocktail glass.


9. Daiquiri

15ml Cointreau

15ml Lime

45ml Mount Gay Rum

10ml Agave Nectar

A slight tweak on the classic recipe. The Mount gay rum lends its golden hue to this delicious drink. Shake and strain into a cocktail glass for the best results.


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Combining Cointreau & Chardonnay; this cocktail is a little more refined…

8. Cointreau Cobbler

50ml Cointreau

80ml Chardonnay White Wine

2 orange slices

1 lemon slices

Shake all the ingredients and strain into a wine glass. Top up with a bit of Prosecco if you fancy a touch of class.

 

 


7. Sidecar

30ml Cointreau

30ml Lemon Juice

30ml Remy Martin VSOP cognac

Pure class in a glass; Shake and strain the ingredients into a martini glass and enjoy thoroughly.


6. Cosmopolitan

Classic Cosmo:

20ml Cointreau

10ml Lime Juice

20ml Cranberry Juice

40ml Vodka

Cointreau special: Cointreaupolitan

50ml Cointreau

30ml Cranberry Juice

20ml Lemon Juice

Whichever recipe you choose one thing is certain: Enjoyment. Shake and strain the ingredients into a cocktail glass. Add ice if you wish.


5. Margarita

20ml Cointreau

20ml Lime Juice

40ml Silver Tequila

A classic cocktail for a classic liqueur; Shake and strain the ingredients into a coupe glass and garnish with a lime wheel.


4. Cointreau Caipirinha

50ml Cointreau

Half a lime (quartered)

Crushed ice

A slightly sweeter take on a Brazilian classic; shake and strain all the ingredients into a small ice-filled rocks glass and drop in a couple of lime wedges for garnish.


3. White Lady

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Mixing gin with Cointreau; this cocktail is strong but fragrant…

20ml Cointreau

20ml Lemon Juice

40ml Gin

This classy little cocktail is extremely simple: shake and strain into a cocktail glass. For added class garnish with an edible flower (Try some different coloured rose petals)


2. Sunkiss

40ml Cointreau

50ml Pineapple Juice

30ml Yellow Grapefruit Juice

A deliciously sweet Caribbean cocktail; perfect for those summer evenings. Shake all the ingredients and strain into a long glass filled with crushed ice.


1. Cointreau Fizz

The reason this is my number one is for the pure versatility of the drink. If you head over to the Cointreau website, you’ll find a list of cocktails both famous and lesser known. If you look carefully you’ll find 9 different recipes for ‘Fizz’ cocktails. The only difference (generally at least) is the garnish. As many of you know the garnish is extremely important to the taste of some cocktails, and none more so than with the Cointreau Fizz.

With recipes such as; Strawberry & Mint, Mint Tea, Cucumber & Basil and Passion & Pepper, the Cointreau fizz is, literally, a cocktail for all tastes.

Here are my 3 favourite recipes:

Cointreau Fizz – Simple but stunning… 

50ml Cointreau

½ fresh Lime Juice

100ml Soda Water


Cointreau Fizz, Passion & Pepper – Spicy, with a splash of passion…

50ml Cointreau

15ml fresh lime juice

 2 fresh passion fruits

1 thin slice of thai chilli pepper

50ml soda water

Method: add all the ingredients into a cocktail shaker (only use the juice of the passion fruits). Shake until the metal is frosted and then strain over ice into a glass. Top up with soda water.


cointreau_fizz_strawberry
A refreshing combination of mint and strawberry; this drink is one of the most refreshing drinks you’ll ever try…

Cointreau Fizz, Strawberry & Mint

50ml Cointreau

15ml Lime Juice

4-5 fresh strawberries

3 fresh mint leaves

50ml soda water

Method: Muddle the strawberries and mint leaves in a Boston shaker. Add the Cointreau and lime juice and shake until the metal becomes frosted. Strain into a glass, over ice and garnish with a strawberry slice and a fresh mint sprig.


Hopefully, these cocktails help you enjoy your evenings, summer or no. If you have a penchant for Cointreau then why not take a peek at my other Cointreau related posts? Click here to see more!

Disclaimer: All of the views and opinions on this post are my own and have not, in any way, been influenced by Cointreau or any other party.

A selection of the recipes in this post (as well as much more) can be found under the ‘cocktails’ section of the Cointreau website.