SOURS

The sour for­mula is the root of many cock­tails, in­clud­ing mar­gar­i­tas and mules, per­haps be­cause it’s so easy to re­mem­ber and so sim­ple to adapt. All you need:

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Shake all ingredients in a cock­tail shaker with ice; strain and serve in a mar­tini glass or over ice in an old-fash­ioned glass. Add club soda and call it a fizz. Or build it in a tall glass with club soda and call it a Collins. Or try these vari­a­tions:

APRI­COT MOSCOW MULE

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Fill a cop­per mug with crushed ice. Add 3 ounces vodka, 1½ ounces Gin­ger Sim­ple Syrup (recipe, be­low left), 1½ ounces freshly squeezed lime juice, and half of a thinly sliced apri­cot. Top with 4 ounces club soda and a squeezed lime wedge. Stir well. Makes 1 (1-cup) cock­tail and enough Gin­ger Sim­ple Syrup for 3 more.

SPICY WA­TER­MELON MAR­GARITA

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Purée 2 cups cubed seed­less wa­ter­melon in a blender. Wipe the rim of a mar­garita glass with a lime wedge; dip rim into kosher salt or coarse white dec­o­rat­ing sugar. In a cock­tail shaker half-filled with ice, add 2 ounces of the wa­ter­melon purée, 1½ ounces sil­ver te­quila, ¾ ounce Coin­treau, ¾ ounce lime juice, and 1 slice jalapeño. Shake un­til very cold. Strain into pre­pared glass. Gar­nish with a wa­ter­melon wedge or melon balls and a jalapeño slice—or sim­ply float a jalapeño slice on top of drink. Makes 1 (¾-cup) cock­tail and enough wa­ter­melon purée for 4 more.

CLOVER CLUB

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In a cock­tail shaker, mud­dle 5 fresh rasp­ber­ries and 1 sprig fresh thyme. Add 1½ ounces gin, 1 pas­teur­ized egg white or 1 ounce pas­teur­ized liq­uid egg whites, ¾ ounce sim­ple syrup, and ¾ ounce fresh lemon juice. Shake un­til mix­ture no longer sounds sloshy. (You will feel a lot of pres­sure.)

Add ice to fill shaker half-full. Shake again un­til very cold. Strain into a coupe or cock­tail glass. Dust top with cin­na­mon, or gar­nish with lemon zest curl or ad­di­tional thyme. Makes 1 (¾-cup) cock­tail.

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