Easy summer cocktail classics

With the summer fast approaching, you’re going to need to cool off. What better way to relax before the Summer Ball, or at a barbecue,  than with a delicious, refreshing cocktail? Hey, even if the Irish weather is abysmal, at least your mixology skills won’t be. Check out our list of easy to make concoctions; just shake and serve.

Piña Colada

The Piña Colada has been the official drink of Puerto Rico since 1978, but you can enjoy this tropical beverage from the comfort of your own home. Getting caught in the rain is not required.
• 2 parts white rum
• 1 part coconut cream
• 3 parts pineapple juice
• 1 pineapple slice
• Ice

Gummy Bear

Drunken gummy bears. What could be better? This fruity drink incorporates gummy bears soaked in vodka for a tasty alcohol infusion. Mix while singing the Gummy Bear song from back in the day.
• 2 part vodka
• 1 part raspberry schnapps
• 1 part cranberry juice
• 1 part Sprite/7Up
• Ice

Black Russian

It takes a good drink to survive a Russian winter, and this one definitely makes the cut. Perfect as an after-dinner drink (for anyone that refined).
• 2 parts vodka
• 1 part Kahlua
• Ice
Feeling brave? Serve with Guinness for an Irish Russian.


Affectionately known as a Cosmo, this sweet little number found its fame with Carrie and Co. in Sex and The City. Is there anything better for a night with the girls?
• 1.5 parts vodka
• 1 part Cointreau
• 1 part cranberry juice
• Dash of lime


A Cuban drink that was originally used to combat scurvy; a vitamin C deficiency in sailors. The name literally means “something wet”.
• 1 part rum
• 0.5 parts lime cordial
• 3 parts Sprite/7Up
• A wedge of fresh lime
• Ice

Tequila Sunrise

Just one sip of this tropical elixir will transport you to spring-break in Cancun. Sigh.
• 3 parts tequila
• 6 parts orange juice
• 1 part grenadine (don’t stir; let it sink to the bottom!)
• Serve with a cherry on top


A love it or hate it cocktail but a classic nonetheless. Some people enjoy its refreshing zing, others find it too sour. Adding some sugar will sweeten it up for the latter.
• 7 parts tequila
• 4 parts Cointreau or Triple Sec
• 3 parts lime juice
For the full Margarita experience, rub a lime around the rim of the glass and dip it in salt.

Sex on The Beach

This provocatively named cocktail is a handy one for parties or pre-drinks because almost everyone likes it. There are lots of different variations, but like a lot of things in life, the original is the best.
• 1 part vodka
• 1 part peach schnapps
• 4 parts cranberry juice
• 2 parts orange juice
• Ice


I have always been curious about Martinis. There’s something about those long-stemmed glasses and olives that oozes sophistication. However my research revealed they’re not for the faint hearted. Proceed with caution:
• 5 parts gin
• 1 part vermouth
Garnish the old-school way with a single olive.

Watermelon Vodka

This is one that is guaranteed to wow. If you’re feeling especially creative, why not try making some watermelon vodka? It’s not as hard as it sounds and it is ideal for a summer evening.
How to:
1. Obtain an evenly sized, seedless watermelon, a 375ml bottle of vodka and a funnel.
2. Using a sharp knife, cut a circle in the skin of the watermelon large enough for a funnel to fit in. Cut deep enough to reveal the red flesh of the watermelon, because the flesh needs to be in contact with the bottle.
3. Pour the vodka into the exposed fruit via the funnel. It will probably take several minutes to completely empty the bottle and for the vodka to be absorbed into the fruit.
4. And now we wait. To ensure the vodka has been fully absorbed into the watermelon, leave it for a couple of hours in the fridge.
5. Slice the watermelon, serve and enjoy. What could be better than eating alcohol while drinking it too?

These recipes are guaranteed to give you that feel-good summer vibe – enjoy sensibly!

By Katie Shaughnessy

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