August means hot weather. But, it also features interesting off-beat national holidays, such as Root Beer Float Day (Aug. 6), Rum Day (Aug. 16), Lemonade Day (Aug. 20) and Red Wine Day (Aug. 28). This inspired our staff at Aroundabout Local Media (ALM) to share our favorite refreshing summer drinks. So, dust off that blender, pop that cork and let’s get shaking!
Red Wine Sangria
Katie Beall, Around Acworth editor
I picked up this sangria recipe at a cooking class while on a trip to Spain several years back and it quickly became a favorite for summer gatherings. Mix up a pitcher to share!
• 750 milliliters of red wine (any type works)
• 3 tablespoons sugar
• Dash of cinnamon
• 150 milliliters orange juice
• 75 milliliters vermouth
• 1 peach
• 1 lemon
• 150 milliliters soda water
Add sugar and cinnamon to the wine and mix well, then add orange juice and liquor. Slice and add fruit. Refrigerate for at least two hours. Add soda water before serving. Serve chilled over ice.
Denise Griffin, controller
This is refreshing and tart summer favorite.
• Muddled mint
• 1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
• 6 ounces Ting (grapefruit soda)
• 2 ounces vodka
Mix together and serve over ice.
Dole Whip Lemonade
Michelle Smith, marketing and advertising specialist
This one is non-alcoholic, but it’s like dessert in a cup!
• 1 cup frozen fresh pineapple
• 1 cup favorite lemonade
• 1/2 cup coconut milk (in the can)
• Maraschino cherries with stems for garnish
Blend, pour, and enjoy!
Champagne Jell-O Shots
Jackie Loudin, managing editor
Take the edge off the summer heat with this cool adult treat. Just make sure everyone knows these aren’t for the kids!
• 1 large box of your favorite Jello-O gelatin flavor
• 1 cup boiling water
• 2 cups chilled champagne
Add the boiling water to the Jell-O and stir until completely dissolved. Add the chilled champagne and stir well. Pour mixture into small condiment cups and place the lid on top. Arrange on a cookie sheet or platter, and place them in the refrigerator to set. For faster results, put them in the freezer.
Strawberry Fizzy Lemonade
Tiffany Hughes, ALM food writer
My lemonade recipe can be changed a lot – raspberries, blackberries, etc., instead of strawberries, no ginger ale, or no berries at all. Basically, all you need is two of the three components to make it work.
• 4 cups prepared lemonade
• 2 cans ginger ale (3 cups)
• 1/2 cup fresh or frozen strawberries
Run strawberries through blender, then combine with other ingredients. Serve over ice or over frozen fruit!
Jennifer Coleman, market manager
My favorite summer refresher is a chilled glass of La Marca prosecco with a twist. It’s super easy and pretty too!
• Wine glasses
• Prosecco or other wine (white, blush or rosé)
• Real fruit popsicles
Place a gourmet popsicle in a glass, pour chilled wine over the popsicle and serve. Mix it up by making your own fresh fruit popsicles with prosecco or white wine.
Piña Colada Creamsicle
Michelle McCulloch, art director
I came up with this tasty treat while experimenting one night.
• 1 cup Dole pineapple orange juice
• 2 ounces coconut rum
• 1 ounce half and half
Fill a tall glass with ice and add ingredients. Stir and enjoy!
Key Lime Martini
Patty Ponder, president
• 2 ounces vanilla vodka
• 1/2 ounce key lime juice or regular lime juice
• 2 tablespoons Coco Lopez cream of coconut
• 1 ounce pineapple juice
• 1 ounce heavy cream
• Graham cracker crumbs
Rim a cocktail glass with the graham cracker crumbs. Fill a martini shaker with ice and put all the other ingredients in it. Shake thoroughly and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with a wheel of lime or a lime twist.
Candi Hannigan, executive editor
A straw is great for sipping, but keep a spoon around for digging out the berries from the bottom of
the glass. Bonus: only 3 points on the Weight Watchers blue plan.
• 3-5 blackberries
• 3-5 raspberries
• 1 slice lime
• 1.5 ounce vodka
• 3/4 cup ice
• 3/4 cup diet raspberry soda (or another flavor if you prefer)
Muddle the berries and lime with the vodka. Fill the cup with ice, pour the soda over the ice and garnish with another lime slice.