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10 Cocktail Recipes for Cool Summer Sippin’

10 Cocktail Recipes for Cool Summer Sippin’
June 2021
PHOTOGRAPHER: 

Top local bartenders share the season’s most refreshing libations



Lowcountry summers are for sipping in the shade, accompanied by salty breezes and a good friend or two. We tapped some of the city’s top bartenders to share recipes for the season’s most refreshing drinks. All are portioned to serve one, but most can be batched for a crowd. So get out those blenders and make sure that the ice machine is running at top speed. We’ll get you to the porch, patio, or poolside in no time. Cheers!

Brazilian Limeade - Bar George, James Island

Bar George is hard to define, but easy to love, including a drinks menu that doesn’t take itself too seriously—Pony High Lifes with a Banana Jameson, anyone? “We like to dip our toe in tiki culture, but we’re really cheap tiki, a fast and fun take,” says partner Joey Goetz. You can dive in with this cocktail, which takes traditional limonada out for a date to a tiki bar with the addition of rum.  >>Get the recipe here

Raspberry Revolution - Delaney Oyster House, downtown

Like many bar folks on this list, Delaney Oyster House’s lead bartender Jessica Backhus rotates the cocktail menus seasonally, but she believes no matter the weather, drinks with at least a little effervescence have a place at this seafood house. Her go-to sparkling water? Topo Chico. “The bubble count of this mineral water is higher, and a small amount goes a long way. Also, there’s a natural salinity to this brand, and salt is a secret ingredient for good cocktails,” she explains. Our suggestion: splurge on it for ultimate summer cocktail refreshment.  >>Get the recipe here

Fuzzy Navel - Edmund’s Oast, downtown

“Growing up, I often spent summers and holidays with my grandmother in Ashton, Idaho, and this is the only thing I ever saw her make and drink,” says Edmund’s Oast bar manager Jayce McConnell. “The key to making this a great blended drink is to go for smooth,” he says. “Start with a little ice and add more until you hit the consistency you want.” McConnell has updated the ’80s classic with fresh peach puree and Blended Family No. 4 Peach, a small batch liqueur made from Georgia peaches and developed by former Charleston barman Scott Mayer.  >>Get the recipe here

Kalimotxo Slushito - Estadio, downtown

For a couple of years, Estadio beverage director Brandon Underwood lived in Aragón, Spain, where he developed an affinity for kalimotxo (pronounced cal-ee-MO-cho), the country’s daytime “hang-out drink.” Equal parts cola and wine with lots of ice, it was just as good sipping in parks as it was bar hopping on holidays, he says. So when the modern Spanish tapas eatery’s slushie machine needed a new cocktail creation, Underwood knew just what to make. “For making at home, we added a dose of simple syrup since blending the ice will naturally dilute it a bit,” he explains.  >>Get the recipe here

The Bookworm - The Bar at Husk, downtown

“Having nonalcoholic drinks allows us to give every guest a unique and tailored experience with hospitality at the forefront,” says lead bartender Justin Simko. “When you’re sitting at the bar, you get the experience of watching the bartenders handcraft your beverage, whether there is alcohol in it or not.” This cocktail will do the same for your guests, as it is a familiar “pink lemonade” hue, but with much more depth of flavor and some fantastic fizzy bubbles.  >>Get the recipe here

Sangria Swirl  - Mex 1 Coastal Cantina, Mount Pleasant, Sullivan’s Island, & West Ashley

“The thing that sets our margaritas apart is the fact that we only use 100 percent blue agave tequila,” says Morgan Hurley, marketing and beverage director of Mex 1 Coastal Cantina, whose three local eateries serve close to 15,000 margaritas a month. This version takes the fun but not fancy “CoronaRita” up a notch by swirling sangria into the drink instead of a Mexican beer.  >>Get the recipe here

Toni Basil - Lowlife Bar, Folly Beach

“Toni Basil’s album was one of the first I had as a kid, so I wanted to pay homage to that,” says Lowlife’s TJ Lynch. The Folly Beach bar places a big focus on music with many song titles and artists’ names topping the menu. And while this drink’s name isn’t “Mickey,” it is “so fine,” especially when you’re sipping one of these as the afternoon sea breezes roll in and listening to Lynch’s playlist of 700-plus songs.  >>Get the recipe here

Watermelon Stand - Basic Kitchen, downtown

When Basic Kitchen began using the famed South Carolina Bradford watermelons on its menu, the fruit was so massive that despite the kitchen’s best efforts, there were still leftovers. And thus, this cocktail was born, using fresh watermelon juice with strawberry-infused Aperol to create a lush sweetness. “It’s one of the most thirst-quenching drinks we’ve ever had on the menu, especially when that heat index is reaching 110 on summer days downtown,” says Henry Tuslow, Basic Kitchen’s assistant general manager.   >>Get the recipe here

La Voilà - Félix Cocktails et Cuisine, downtown

A cocktail-forward bar with a Parisian flair, Félix places its focus on the art of the mixed drink. To that end, a few of its most popular cocktails are on draft, including this one, which is perfect for when temperatures and humidity are high. “It was created to be fun and refreshing,” says bar manager Hailey Knight, “but it also packs a punch with two types of vodka.”   >>Get the recipe here

Passenger 46 - Wiki Wiki Sandbar, Folly Beach

This cocktail is not only inspired by the pure single Jamaican rum it features in a nod to the Negroni, but also by something decidedly more down to earth. “What would imaginary Passenger 46 be drinking in the Wesley Snipes movie, Passenger 57?” asks owner Karalee Fallert with a chuckle. That commitment to ingredients, with a dose of fun, is what Folly Beach’s Wiki Wiki Sandbar is all about. Boasting an impressive list of 65 rums, there are plenty of opportunities to let your imagination roam free.  >>Get the recipe here