Five summer cocktails with the right balance
As the summer social season rolls in, cocktails play a starring role — especially those that don’t challenge the senses but have just the right balance to leave you wanting another. Here are five simple but moreish recipes to fit our busy, modern lifestyles. Mix them up and enjoy with some cicchetti, tapas or light bites... 1. Martini Riserva and Tonic The vibrant bitter-sweet taste of Martini is finding ever increasing legions of fans and can be enjoyed in two styles: Martini Riserva Speciale Rubino Vermouth di Torino (currently reduced to £11 from £15, 75cl, Ocado) — a bright ruby red vermouth, with a delicate balance of botanicas.
Or Martini Riserva Speciale Ambrato Vermouth di Torino (£15, 75cl, Ocado) — a floral and aromatic blend of small parcels of Moscato d’Asti produces a beautifully honeyed style with a light, bitter taste profile. Ingredients: One part Martini Riserva Speciale Rubino or Ambrato, one part tonic water. Method: Fill a tumbler with ice, add one part Martini and one part tonic water, garnish with an orange wedge (Rubino) or lemon wedge (Ambrato). 2. Perfect Negroni Some may say there’s no better fix than the bitterly complex flavours of a negroni, which could be one of the reasons it’s been inspiring countless variations for close to a century. Today, two Italian mixologists have created Seven Hills Italian Dry Gin (£34.99, 70cl, Amazon), which they cite as the perfect Italian gin for the perfect negroni. Ingredients: 30ml Seven Hills Gin, 15ml Campari, 15ml Antica Formula Carpano Vermouth. Method: Half fill a mixing glass with ice. Add the gin, Campari and vermouth. Stir well, then strain into an old-fashioned glass. Garnish with a twist of grapefruit. 3. Tanqueray Flor de Sevilla Negroni Elsewhere, Tanqueray No Ten have caused a big stir by adding a Spanish twist to the negroni with their delicious new flavour profile, Tanqueray Flor de Sevilla (£27.45, 70cl, 31Dover.com). Infused with bittersweet Seville oranges, the fruity, zesty notes mingle with the four botanicals in the gin. Ingredients: 25ml Tanqueray Flor De Sevilla, 25ml Campari, 25ml sweet vermouth, fresh orange slice or peel. Method: Fill an old-fashioned glass with ice. Add the gin, Campari and vermouth, stir well and garnish with an orange slice. 4. Rock Rose VinChill Factor The signature ceramic bottle of the multi-award winning Rock Rose Gin (£34, 70cl, DunnetBayDistillers.co.uk) always looks good on a cocktail trolley. Embellished with a dash of pomegranate syrup to give it some extra punch, the berry red bubbles are deliciously refreshing. Give it a go... Ingredients: 25ml Rock Rose Gin, 25ml red Rioja, 15ml pomegranate syrup, prosecco to top up. Method: Half fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add the gin, Rioja and pomegranate syrup, shake vigorously and strain into a chilled flute. Top with prosecco and garnish with an orange twist. 5. St Germain Spritz The beauty of this concoction is not only that it’s extremely moreish but it’s also refreshingly light. The natural floral notes in St Germain Liqueur Elderflower (£19, 50cl, Ocado), combined with prosecco and sparkling water really hits the spot. Here’s how to create this elegant and quintessentially French aperitif... Ingredients: 1.5 parts St Germain, 2 parts prosecco, 2 parts sparkling water, 1 lemon. Method: Fill a tall Collins glass with ice. Add the prosecco first, then St Germain, then sparkling water — the order is essential to bring out the best of everything — stir slowly and garnish with a lemon twist.