There may still be snow on the ground throughout much of the country, but spring is just around the corner. You know what that means: sunny days, cool breezes, freshly-bloomed flowers, and refreshing cocktails on the patio, of course! Naturally, you’re going to need some tasty recipes to start the season off right, and we’ve got the list for you. Now bring out the blender, grab your favorite martini glass, and let the fun begin!
This mojito variation is light and refreshing; why not enjoy the health benefits of green tea while sipping a delicious cocktail? Muddle the lime juice, mint (or shiso), and sugar together (taking care not to over-muddle). Add ice then stir in rum and green tea.
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- 4 large mint leaves (or substitute 1 shiso leaf, torn into several large pieces)
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- approx. 1/2 cup brewed green tea, chilled
- 1 ounce white rum
You can’t go wrong with a margarita, and the added basil and lime make this a perfect choice for a beautiful spring day. Simply pour lime juice, syrup, and tequila over ice and top with strawberry and basil. Makes one drink, but multiplying the recipe by 8 will serve a crowd. Add the ingredients to a pitcher the night before, and the strawberries will soak in and turn the margarita a pretty pink color.
- 1 ounce fresh lime juice
- 1/2 ounce simple syrup
- 2 ounces tequila
- 1 strawberry, tops cut off and sliced
- 1 basil leaf
Coconut water is a natural thirst-quencher, and swizzled with ingredients like genever and fresh lime juice, it may be tough to have just one. Combine all ingredients at once in a tall glass filled with ice. Swizzle until the glass is frosted.
- 2 ounces genever
- 2 ounces coconut water
- 1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
- 1/2 ounce rich Demerara syrup (2:1)
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters (optional)
- Crushed ice
- Tools: swizzle stick
- Glass: tall
This recipe takes about ten to fifteen minutes to prepare, and if you make it ahead of time, the juices will infuse with the alcohol and make for a deliciously fruity blend. In a large pitcher, combine sugar, Calvados, lime, lemon, peaches, and apples. Add a bottle of Rioja wine and chill the mixture for several hours. Top off glasses with a splash of soda water and a few fresh raspberries just prior to serving.
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 3 shots Calvados or other apple liquor
- 1 lime, sliced
- 1 lemon, sliced
- 2 ripe peaches, cut into wedges
- 3 ripe green apples seeded and cut into wedges
- 1 bottle white Rioja Spanish wine or other dry white wine
- 1 pint raspberries
- Sparkling soda water
5. April Shower
As the saying goes, April showers bring May flowers, only you won’t need an umbrella with this herbal-flavored brandy cocktail! Shake all ingredients together with ice then strain into a chilled glass.
- 1 ounce brandy
- 1/4 ounce Yellow Chartreuse
- 1 ounce orange juice
6. Mint Julep
Even if horse races aren’t your thing, the Kentucky Derby can be a fun celebration for all – not to mention a great excuse to get dolled up, wear your most elaborate hat, and sip on this must-have Southern classic. Crush mint leaves in a highball glass then fill with ice. Add simple syrup, water, and Woodford, stirring until the glass frosts. Garnish with a mint sprig.
- 2 ounces Woodford Reserve
- 1 ounce water
- 1 teaspoon simple syrup
- 4 sprigs fresh mint
7. Spring Fling
This flirty concoction elicits a fresh, crisp taste with just the right amount of tartness. In a shaker filled with ice, shake all ingredients except ginger ale together vigorously. Strain into a glass and top with ginger ale.
- 1 1/2 ounces Pucker Sour Apple Sass Vodka
- 1 teaspoon pink guava puree
- 1 teaspoon tangerine puree
- 1/2 lime, juiced
- 2 ounces ginger ale
8. Easter Bunny
Starting to feel the need for a chocolate fix? Hunts for candy-filled eggs may be intended for kids, but this is one treat you won’t have to share, and it’s sure to satisfy your craving. Shake the crème de cacao and vodka together with ice. Pour into a glass with ice cubes. Float the chocolate syrup and cherry brandy on top for the final touch.
- 1 1/2 ounces dark crème de cacao
- 1/2 ounce vodka
- 1 teaspoon chocolate syrup
- 1 teaspoon cherry brandy
Like it or not, tax season is upon us. The sooner you get that paperwork filed though, the sooner you can sit back and enjoy this easy gin martini – whether you’re celebrating your hefty tax return or grudgingly pulling out the checkbook! Pour the ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well then strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with an orange twist.
- 2 ounces gin
- 1/4 ounce sweet vermouth
- 1/4 ounce dry vermouth
- 1 ounce fresh orange juice
- 1-2 dashes Angostura bitters (to taste)
- Orange twist for garnish
10. Yellow Bird
Spring break vacation or not, this Caribbean delight will take you to a place of sandy beaches and ocean breezes! Blend all ingredients and pour over ice. Garnish with an orange slice and a cherry.
- 1 ounce light rum
- 1/4 ounce Galliano
- 1/4 ounce creme de banane
- 2 ounces orange juice
- 1 ounce pineapple juice
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