On sultry days, there is nothing better than sipping cooling cocktails with friends, sharing stories and relaxing by the pool. Libations come in all forms, but the ones with fruit juices always seem so appropriate for the summertime.
When today’s topic was announced for the Food Network’s #SummerSoiree, I wasn’t sure what I was going to make. There are lots of cocktails that I love during hot weather, many with pineapple juice and vodka as the starting combo. From there they branch out depending on what we have on hand. Fresh fruits might be added, sometimes herbs, you just never know what it might turn into!
When I was a singer, I would bring limeade to performances, sipping it before we went on stage. It was perfect for stripping our throats, making sure our voices would be clear and bright. I loved it but after I stopped singing I forgot about it.
After one particularly rough day, I uncharacteristically told The Artist that I needed a cocktail – yep, it was a bad one, LOL. One of The Artist’s favorite beverages is Calamansi Lime Nectar from Sun Tropics. It is the new and improved version of limeade. Less sweet, it still has the wonderful bright lime flavor that I loved.
On that day, The Artist filled a glass with ice, added a fair pouring of vodka and then the lime nectar. It was exactly what I needed – beautifully refreshing and soothing. With the first sip, I was reliving summer parties with old friends, past adventures, a smile breaking out on my face. Suddenly my day was brighter, always a good thing.
This makes a great cocktail or mocktail. If you do not want to add vodka or other alcohol, this drink is just as delightful with just the juice or with a splash of soda water if you want some carbonation. Children at your home will love this too! The juice would also be great poured over a scoop of vanilla ice cream or sherbet like you would with a root beer float.
If you want a terrific make-ahead cocktail for your next barbecue, give this a go. Mix up a couple of pitchers and keep them chilled. Your guests can serve themselves or you can easily have someone act as the bartender.
Set some glasses up, slice a few limes, and stockpile ice in the freezer. Then when your guests arrive you can greet them with an icy cold glass and start the party the minute they step in the door!
Jane’s Tips and Hints:
You can make these as mild or strong as you like. Adjust the amount of vodka (or other alcohol of your choice) to your personal taste. Or leave it out of the pitchers and mix the drinks on the fly. Both work, but having a pre-mixed blend is less work for you.
Summer Lime Cooler
© 2014 Jane Bonacci, The Heritage Cook. All rights reserved.
Yield: 1 serving
1 to 2 oz good quality vodka or other alcohol of your choice
Calamansi Lime Nectar from Sun Tropics
Cut the limes into 1/4-inch-thick slices. On each slice, make a cut from the edge to the center, following one of the segments (the thin white lines in citrus fruits). This slit in the slice will allow you to easily attach the slice to the edge of the drink glasses. If you prepare these in advance, store them, covered, in the refrigerator.
In a highball or Collins glass (lower and wide vs. narrow and tall), fill with ice cubes. Add the alcohol or alternately, if you are the kind of person who hates measuring, fill the glass about 1/3 with the vodka. Fill the rest of the way with the lime juice. This ratio makes a well-balanced cocktail that isn’t too strong and that nearly everyone will enjoy.
Slip a slice of lime on the edge of the glass and serve immediately.
Create a New Tradition Today!
This recipe is part of Food Network’s weekly Summer Soiree. See the links below for more inspiration and great recipes and check out our Pinterest page for all of the recipes from this program!
Feed Me Phoebe: Grilled Strawberry-Mint Bellinis
The Lemon Bowl: Raspberry-Ginger Bellini
Jeanette’s Healthy Living: White Peach Sangria
The Cultural Dish: Pimm’s Cup
Virtually Homemade: Frozen Lime Margaritas with a Sangria Swirl
Weelicious: Strawberry Lemonade
Big Girls, Small Kitchen: Strawberry Gimlets with Homemade Strawberry Vodka
Napa Farmhouse 1885: Cucumber and Sage Cocktail
Red or Green: Frozen Tri-Melon Cocktail
Dishing With Divya: Caipirinha I
n Jennie’s Kitchen: Cantaloupe Lillet Sparkler
Poet in the Pantry: Pirate’s Booty Call
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Watermelon Malibu Surf
Sweet Life Bake: Boozy Affogato
Devour: 5 Boozy Summer Coolers
Domesticate Me: Blueberry Mojito Royale
Haute Apple Pie: Classic Mojito
Daily*Dishin: Blackberry Rum Shrub
Taste With The Eyes: Korean Soju Kimbap Bloody Mary
FN Dish: Sip Your Way Through Summer (Recipes)
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