Summer cocktails usually include loads of red fruits, endless sugar and an apparent lack of the stuff that really gets us going. That no longer needs to be the case. I headed to Long Island City speakeasy Dutch Kills, where all-star bartender Abraham Hawkins showed me how to up my summer drinking habits without resorting to the usual mojitos.
The quintessential summer drink, the daiquiri is revamped through, well, simplification. Hawkins presents an unpretentious version of the cocktail with fresh lime and pineapple, a touch of sugar and white rum. Ideally sipped après dinner while laughing the night away amongst friends, this is the perfect concoction for the heavy whiskey drinker that wants to opt for something a bit different (albeit a touch sweeter and a lot more creative) during the warmer months.
Made with lemon, sugar, sweet vermouth, strawberries, cucumber and gin, this is summer in a glass. Very sweet and reminiscent of the flavors that actually make this our favorite season to spend on the Island, this cocktail is what you want to enjoy while lounging by the pool either alone or with your buddies. The giant ice cube adds a touch of refinement to the otherwise innocent-looking drink. Hakwins’s tip is to use fresh organic fruits when making this and all other cocktails on the list.
An interesting combination of cacao and white rum, this concoction is finished off with fresh raspberries, lemon (for a necessary touch of acidity) and tons of refreshing shaved ice. Arguably the most interesting drink on the list, the blend of cacao and white rum make this a sweet yet excitable bitter concoction that offers an extremely unique and memorable mixture of flavors. You’ll want to drink the Marie Antoinette way past the end of the summer.