Tag Archives: fruit

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/)

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*


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.

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…

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.

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.

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.

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


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).

Sangria: The Latino Method Of Getting Drunk…

Below are a collection of my personal Sangria Recipes… Think of them as a Gateway to your own Sangria Designs.

If you want to use them word for word, you honour me. But if you want to chop and change the ingredients, feel free. That’s the best bit about this post: It’s all about you! – Except my recipes… They’re about me!

A stunning Citrusy White wine Sangria… Perfect refreshment on a summers night…

So Sangria’s are traditionally a Spanish drink, and are a kind of grey area when it comes to cocktails as it is a traditional way of serving wine and fruit. However in recent years it has been more acceptable to tweak sangria recipes to make them more accessible for the wider crowds. Whilst you won’t find many sangria’s on your local pub/cocktail bar’s menus, they are fantastic centrepieces for your private events. And the best thing about these sangria’s is that you can tweak the recipes indefinitely to suit your own tastes.

One of several simple Sangria recipes is as follows:

1 ½ cups of rum

750ml (1 bottle) dry Red Wine

1 cup orange juice

½ cup white granular sugar

1 lemon

1 lime

1 orange

Optional: Selection of orchard fruits (plums, pears, apples, peaches & Nectarines etc…)

This recipe whilst seemingly complicated can be broken down into a simple; easy to follow method that you can transfer to almost all sangria’s you make:

1)      Chill the rum, orange juice and wine (yes I know its red but trust me you want it chilled).

2)      Prepare the fruit. Slice the citrus fruits and halve/quarter the orchard fruits.

3)      Add the rum, sugar and fruit into a pitcher, mixing in the sugar a little.

4)      Leave in the fridge for a couple of hours for the flavours to mix well.

5)      Shortly before serving, gently crush the fruit and stir in the red wine. Adjusting the sweetness to your tastes (add more sugar if it’s too dry for you).

Following these instructions should allow you to create perfectly fantastic tasting Sangria mixes every time.

Sangria’s can make use of old fruits, anything you have can go into a Sangria. Waste not want not!

My first taste of sangria was a red wine, vodka and amaretto mix. As you can imagine it was more a student ‘get drunk quick’ recipe, and whilst it did its job, nobody seemed to enjoying the taste, which is a real shame considering some of the alcohol going into the drink. So the next time I had a party (my University leaving party in fact) I made it my mission to include a refreshing summery sangria that not only got people drunk, but actually tasted fantastic.

I started by stripping the sangria recipe’s found online back to the basics: Wine, a spirit and Fruit. These are the 3 most important ingredients to any sangria. I don’t like red wine in general, so I swapped it out for a medium priced (£4.99-7.99) Pinot Grigio (White) wine. This instantly meant no matter how chilled the mix became the wines taste would only improve (seeing as the general consensus is to serve white wine chilled and red wine at room temperature).

Then I dealt with the spirit:

Technically rum is the classic ingredient and I still believe it works well, especially with white wine. Using a combination of white, golden and dark rums I created layers in the sangria within the rum.

Then using a host of orchard and citrus fruits I bulked out the mix and then topped it up just before serving with a 2L bottle of lemonade. This created a sparkling, refreshing sangria that I found worked better with alcohol used.

The recipe was as follows:

750ml (1 bottle) Pinot Grigio (White) wine

250ml Orange Juice

250ml Cranberry Juice

250ml Pineapple Juice

1 cup of white sugar

500ml White Rum

350ml Golden Rum

250ml Dark Navy Rum

2L (1 bottle) Lemonade

Fruits: 2 x Oranges, 3 x Limes, 3 x Lemons, 3 x Plums, 3 x Peaches, 3 x Apples, 3 x Pears & 1 x Cucumber.

This fruit was sliced, halved, quartered, diced and shredded (cucumber) allowing for quick absorption of the alcohol.

Now I would suggest on sticking to the 5 steps of the recipe at the top of this post, but in this case I could only prepare it 1hr in advance. So to chill the ingredients whilst they mixed, I added 1KG of shop bought ice. This was purely to chill the mixture before serving. Also as a side note, I added the lemonade just before serving, so as the drink kept its fizz.

This ‘white-wine’ sangria recipe might seem slightly complicated but when you look at it, all you have to do is cut out the stuff you don’t want. I had to cater for around 10-15 people but if you have less, I would suggest on cutting out at least half the rum. Using just white rum is not only economical for your bank balance, but also responsible too. This recipe is for enjoyment not a route to satisfy an incessant need to just get drunk.

White wine sangrias are becoming more and more popular, both because of their taste and because they mix better with the fruits used. They are easier to prepare and give a more British feel to this otherwise Spanish drink. Don’t get me wrong, if you like red wine based sangrias then that’s great, but more and more people are heading towards the arguably easier to drink white wine based sangrias.

A simple quick to make White wine Sangria perfect for summer nights would be as follows:

750ml (1 bottle) White Wine

1 ½ cups of white rum

1 ½ cups of orange juice

½ cup of white sugar

1 lemon, lime and orange

Optional: Selection of orchard fruits (apples, pears, plums etc.) to taste.

Top up with either sparkling wine or lemonade.

Top Tips: For further customisation, use your favourite wine (Pinot Grigio’s, Chardonnay’s and Rose wines work equally as well as each other). Also use different fruits. Don’t restrict yourself to the citrus, add some different flavours, try soft berries (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries etc…). And finally why not try using your favourite mixers? Cola’s do not work very well, but different fruit soda’s such as Fanta, Sprite and Vimto all work very well, and add a little extra flavour to the sangria. It’s all about your personal touch, make the sangria something you like, but make it so that the people drinking it will want more. Most importantly, enjoy the experience, from buying the wine, to making the mix to drinking it. It’s all part of the experience…

I prefer white wines, but a Traditional Red Wine Sangria is sometimes just what the doctor ordered… (Disclaimer: Doctors would probably not recommend Sangria ever!)

Other recipes for white wine sangrias can be found on these websites:

Google search for Classic White wine Sangria’s:


Google search for classic Spanish sangria’s:


For a quick, easy & light red wine sangria try this recipe: http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/sangria_93847

Why not check out this great blog for a Rainbow Sangria:


P.S. On a final note, I would just like to say that whilst I generally use Pinot Grigio in the recipes, it was only because that’s what was on offer at the time. I tend to find Chardonnay wines (especially Kumala) make for better additions to the sangria, mainly because they have fruitier bouquets. Also Prosecco is better as a sparkling wine topper than fancy champagne. Revert to my post on champagne/sparkling wine for more information:


Tequila Highball – a taste of Mexico, with a Caribbean twist…

Combining Tequila with Grapefruit juice whilst not new, when combined like this, it makes for a great recipe…

This recipe takes its inspiration from the Anejo Highball recipe (albeit purely inspiration).

The Anejo Highball (as previously posted) is as follows:

1.5 measures Anejo Rum

½ measure fresh lime juice

½ measure dry curacao/triple sec liqueur

2-4 dashes Angostura Bitters

Top up with Ginger Beer

Lime/orange wheel slices to garnish.

The Tequila Highball recipe is, however, slightly different;

1.5 measures Gold Tequila (preferably Anejo, but Reposado will do)

 ½ measure fresh lime juice

½ measure dry curacao/triple sec liqueur

1.5 measures Pink Grapefruit Juice

1 measure Peach Schnapps

Top up with Grapefruit Soda

As you can see this is very much a Mexican themed drink, but coming from a Caribbean train of thought. Using the lime for the same reasons the rum version does, to help cut through the taste of the alcohol but using the Grapefruit juice to help blend the otherwise Margarita style concoction with the Peach Schnapps. And topping up with grapefruit soda purely lightens the up the drink (without losing the flavours).

Tequila can mix well with almost all sweet fruits… As long as its mixed well… Don’t be afraid to experiment

This is very similar to the thought process I went through for the Mexican themed party (see my previous blog: https://theferventshaker.wordpress.com/2012/11/28/the-songwriters-shindig-south-of-the-border/) and the use of grapefruit soda along with grapefruit juice blends in well with the Mexican theme of this drink.

A side note; the Schnapps in this particular recipe, for all intents and purposes, is Peach flavoured, but you can substitute your favourite flavour if you do not like peach.