Spring is in the air and this is the time of year to host your outdoor parties and spend your nights with a simple, refreshing beverage in hand.
We've compiled the perfect beverages for your spring sipping pleasure - Cucumber-Rosemary Gin and Tonic, Strawberry-Basil Margaritas, and Green Team Mojitos for your guests this season.
Cucumber-Rosemary Gin and Tonic
3 sprigs rosemary
2 oz. Hendrick's Gin
4 oz. tonic water (preferably Q or Fever-Tree)
Peel one half of a cucumber, and slice a lime into eight wedges. In a highball glass, add three slices of peeled cucumber, 1 sprig rosemary, juice from a lime wedge and 1 ounce gin. Muddle with the back of a spoon.
Strain through a mesh strainer into a second highball glass. Add several cubes of ice, and three slices of unpeeled cucumber. Top with remaining gin and tonic, and serve garnished with rosemary sprigs.
Strawberry Basil Margaritas
Makes 1 pitcher, or about 8 servings
1 can (12 ounces) frozen limeade concentrate
10 strawberries (or 12 if you're using smaller ones from the farmer's market or your backyard.)
8 basil leaves
2 to 2 1/2 cups tequila (gold or silver)
Empty the limeade concentrate into a pitcher. Add 2 1/2 cans of water and 1 1/2 (18 ounces, or 2 1/4 cups) cans of tequila (or a bit less, if you don't want your drinks to be quite as strong).
Hull the strawberries, slice lengthwise, and add to the pitcher. Crumple the basil a little in your hands (this will help the basil flavor release into the drink) and add it to the pitcher, too. Place the pitcher, covered, in the fridge overnight, or for at least four hours.
Refreshing Green Tea Mojito
makes one drink
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
4 large mint leaves
2 teaspoons sugar
approx. 1/2 cup brewed green tea, chilled
1 ounce white rum
Muddle the lime juice, mint (or shiso), and sugar together in a Collins glass until the leaves bruise lightly and the flavors release. Add ice until glass is about 3/4 full and then pour in rum and green tea. Stir thoroughly.