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Cheers: 43 refreshing summer cocktail recipes

Because it's summer and if it's not the weekend yet, it will be soon, we've compiled 43 of our favorite summer cocktails for your drinking pleasure.

Chilled margaritas, fruit-filled sangrias, large batch punches and small batch cool cucumber martinis — and yes, even a few tempting non-alcoholic options, since somebody needs to drive home eventually. Some of these cocktails take less time to make than they'll take to drink; others include sub-recipes for custom garnishes and components, if you have some time, or secretly want Eric Alperin's job. (Good luck with that.)

To whet your appetite, check out the recipe below for a Sideways sour, made with Pisco, Cointreau, white grape juice and Pinot Noir, and garnished with fresh lemon slices and grapes. The cocktail also include a quick homemade sweet and sour. And it's from the Bellagio in Las Vegas, in case it seems familiar but you just can't remember why. Cheers.


Note: Adapted from Baccarat Bar, Bellagio Las Vegas. The sweet and sour will keep for 1 week, refrigerated.


1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice

In a small saucepan, stir the sugar with one-fourth cup water over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Cool. Combine the cooled simple syrup and lemon juice. Makes 1 cup (8 ounces).


8 ounces pisco
3 ounces Cointreau liqueur
6 ounces white grape juice
6 ounces sweet and sour
3 ounces California Pinot Noir
4 slices lemon
3 grapes

In a large pitcher filled with ice, add the pisco, Cointreau, grape juice and sweet and sour and stir to combine. Strain the cocktail into 4 old-fashioned glasses filled with ice. Slowly pour three-fourths ounce Pinot over the back of a spoon into each cocktail (the Pinot will float on top and slowly diffuse into the cocktail). Garnish with a lemon slice, and float the grapes on top of the drink (if they are still attached to the stem, you can hang the stem on the rim of the glass).

Each serving: 290 calories; 0 protein; 28 grams carbohydrates; 0 fiber; 0 fat; 0 cholesterol; 5 mg. sodium.

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