Top Ten: Classy Cocktails for the Summertime Lush

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The days are getting longer, the sun is shining brighter, and the air is getting more humid and unbearably sticky. Ah yes, summer is truly upon us. And what better way to beat the oppressive dictator-like grip of the summer heat than with a classy chilled alcoholic beverage? But I’m not talking about the usual fair like beer or wine coolers I speak of the classy drinks of the gods – cocktails. Below are ten summertime concoctions that will make you forget all about those dreadful sun burns. 

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:44 PM
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  • ·         1 tablespoon (1/2 ounce) Lillet Blanc
  • ·         2 tablespoons (1 ounce) vodka
  • ·         6 tablespoons (3 ounces) gin
  • ·         1 cup ice
  • ·         1 (3/4-inch-thick) strip lemon peel

The official cocktail brought to mind by Daniel Craig’s rendition of James Bond in Casino Royale is just as fitting a mixture of classiness, strength, and simplicity as the international man of mystery himself. The blend of vodka and gin adds for a convincingly strong tandem that is brought together rather solidly with the lillet blanc for a happily intriguing effect. And an even more intriguing after affect upon having one two of these bad boys.

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:43 PM
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  • ·         1/4 cup (2 ounces) Scotch
  • ·         2 tablespoons (1 ounce) sweet vermouth
  • ·         1 dash orange bitters
  • ·         1 cup ice cubes
  • ·         1/4 cup (2 ounces) cherry ale
  • ·         3/4 cup Orange juice
  • ·         Versa-Whip

     The blood and sand is decidedly tropical drink befitting of any beach time drinking. The varying layers of sweet and citrus from the orange flavors and the sweetness of the cherry ale and vermouth offer a delicate yet memorable blend for the tongue. Each sip offers a warm and inviting taste that constantly calls for another sip…and another…and another.

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:22 PM
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  • ·         1 part Guinness
  • ·         1 part champagne

 

This deceivingly difficult cocktail takes an even blend of Guiness and champagne which comes together to make a deep and rich drink that will satisfy any thirsty nighttime partyer. When mixed properly, the usual darkness of the Guinness is given an unusual lustrous shine from the bubbling champagne that gives the drink a sophisticated glow and a surprisingly smooth taste like running your hand over a velvet cover. 

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:35 PM
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  • ·         About 1 cup ice cubes
  • ·         1/4 cup (2 ounces) reposado tequila
  • ·         6 tablespoons (3 ounces) ginger beer or ginger ale
  • ·         1 teaspoon crème de cassis
  • ·         1 lime wedge

The El Diablo is a different approach to the usual tequila cocktails. What truly separates it from the pack is the use of ginger beer. While you can also substitute with ginger ale, using ginger beer adds a great balance to the fiery nature of the tequila that also plays quite nicely with the crème de cassis, granting a perfect buffer on the tongue that allows you really get the myriad of flavors from the liquors in equal order.

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:40 PM
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  • ·         1½ oz (45 ml) Scotch whisky
  • ·         1 oz (25 ml) sweet vermouth
  • ·         dash Angostura bitters
  • ·         Garnish with a maraschino cherry

     The Rob Roy is another classic cocktail akin to a Manhattan but with a special flair of flavor thanks in part to the sweet vermouth. In this deceptively strong drink, the scotch is given center stage as it mingles with a commanding dance on the palette with the vermouth playing as an even partner to the whisky. 

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:41 PM
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  • ·         brandy
  • ·         Triple sec
  • ·         lemon juice
  • ·         ice
  • ·         Garnish with sugar around the rim and a lemon twist

The Side Car is best known as the archetype for many cocktails throughout the years. This classic cocktail has been the inspiration for many drinks like the Margarita, the Cosmopolitan, and the Kamikaze. With such a delicious progeny claiming the Sidecar as their ancestor, the original source offers an impressive and refreshing blend for any summertime treat. 

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:36 PM
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  • ·         1 shot rye
  • ·         half-slice of orange
  • ·         1 tsp sugar (or simple syrup)
  • ·         Angostura bitters
  • ·         Garnish with a maraschino cherry and an orange wedge

The favored drink of Don Draper and many a speak easy enthusiast, the Old Fashioned is a strong cocktail fitting of any power-broker or any alpha-type personality. The strength of the dry brandy and bitters is balanced out by the sweetness of the sugar, orange, and cherry. With this basic set-up, the sweetness allows the tastes of the brandy to come to the forefront.

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:37 PM
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  • ·         1½ oz. (40 ml) gin
  • ·         2 tsp. caster (superfine) sugar
  • ·         1 tbs. lemon juice
  • ·         Champagne
  • ·         Garnish with a cherry or orange slice

The French 75 is a simple and classy drink that uses the natural tanginess of the lemon juice and the sweetness of the sugar to play up the flavors of the gin. Using such subtle shades of flavor from the simple list of ingredients, the gin can be best supported by the other ingredients to a greater affect than what is usually known with gin cocktails.

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:22 PM
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  • ·         2 ounces gin
  • ·         ½ ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • ·         2 teaspoons maraschino liqueur, preferably Luxardo
  • ·         ¼ ounce crème de violette
  • ·         lemon twist, for garnish

The Aviation is a pretty solid cocktail with a strong base of gin as the prime liquor but it’s offset by the sweetness of the liqueur and the zestiness of the lemon juice. The crème de violette also helps to mellow out the flavor but also manages to unify the main flavors into a tasty summertime treat.

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by Ordinary_Gentleman - 5/14/2012 06:39 PM
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  • ·         3 oz bourbon whiskey
  • ·         5 – 6 sprigs of mint
  • ·         1 tsp sugar
ThThe patron drink of any southern gentleman or southern belle, the mint julep is the perfect companion for any nighttime jaunt during a Louisiana scorcher or an equally hot and heavy night out on the town. The muddled mint sprigs permeate throughout the drink, imbuing every sip with an invigorating kiss of mint and the touch of sugar helps as a counterweight against the almost overwhelming mint flavor. Together with the bourbon, you have for yourself a refreshing drink that will cool you off as well as kick you into high gear.
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