by Mercedes J.
Ah, summer in Ft. Lauderdale. At least once a day, I receive an SMS message on my smart phone with a picture of someone’s dashboard temperature gauge reading well over 90 degrees fahrenheit. The months of July and August are out to kill South Floridians, but we will not be vanquished! When you notice that you are perspiring more than the dude in the yellow chicken suit off Cordova Road at Harbor shops, you know it’s time to find a way to cool it down a notch. Sure, you could stay inside – but air conditioned South Florida is the coldest place in the country. Since remaining indoors isn’t so hot (pun intended), I say let’s grab a lounge chair by the pool and chill out by enjoying one of these refreshing adult libations (whilst lathered with SPF 50).
Libation Option One:
French Rosé is not to be confused with its ugly California step sister, White Zinfandel. Rosé is a delightfully crisp and refreshing wine, perfect for the unrelenting heat of summer. The light bodied wine has delicate notes of strawberries and raspberries. Luckily, a nice selection of good Rosé wines are readily available at our local Total Wine spirits store. A great buy for under $10 is Domaine Guy Mousset Côtes du Rhône Cuvée Réservée (2009).
When we think of Sangria, we typically have a pictorial image of a bold red wine mixed with hearty fruit. For your next outdoor festivity, try making a white sangria using the recipe below which features sparkling wine with juicy peaches and oranges.
2 bottles Pinot Grigio
1 bottle Sparkling wine
½ cup Grand Marnier
1 cup peach nectar
½ cup sugar
1 sliced orange
2 peaches, sliced
In a large pitcher, mix the Pinot Grigio, Grand Marnier, peach nectar, and sugar until well blended and the sugar is dissolved. Add the sliced fruit and refrigerate for at least one hour. Just before serving, add the chilled sparkling wine and serve over ice. (Recipe courtesy of the Squat-N-Gobble)
Libation Option Three:
If you have not had a Gin Fizz recently (or ever) I highly recommend it. The simple syrup and citrus flavors from the lemons and limes round out the sharpness of the liquor — so even if you don’t usually enjoy gin, you will love this thirst-quenching cocktail. Most recipes will give instructions on how to make one drink at a time. But I know you guys better than that, it’s hot as holy heck out there — let’s make a big girl pitcher. Here’s how the Squat-N-Gobble makes the libation:
2 cups good Gin
½ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
½ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
½ cup simple syrup*
Liter of club soda, chilled
Mix the Gin, lemon and lime juices, and simple syrup. Chill for at least one hour. To serve, pour the liquor mixture over ice into a highball glass (or your favorite plastic Solo cup) ¾ of the way full. Top the drink with chilled club soda and garnish with a lemon or lime wedge.
*Simple syrup is produced by combining equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan over medium low heat until the sugar has dissolved. Allow to cool completely.