Some Summer Wedding Cocktails

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Summer sunshine is beautiful, but it’s punishing for guests wearing formal clothing. Instead of sweltering under a tuxedo or satin gown, beat the heat with these refreshing summer cocktails. That way, your guests will focus less on the temperature and more on your smile as you walk down the sunny aisle. Don’t forget to stay hydrated with plenty of non-alcoholic options, too!

Red Hibiscus Margarita

Hibiscus flowers floating in syrup make a great starting place for a summer margarita. These can be found at specialty grocery stores or online. Mix 1 cup of hibiscus blossoms and syrup with 1 cup of tequila. Add ⅓ cup of Triple Sec (or any citrus liqueur) and an equal amount of freshly-squeezed lime juice. Shake thoroughly. Strain the flowers out of the final mix and pour over ice cubes. This drink looks best iced and served in a tall glass. Garnish with slices of lime, orange, and, if you can find them, fresh hibiscus flowers. 

Watermelon Citrus Champagne

Light and refreshing, watermelon and citrus are two flavors that are at their best on hot summer days. Mix ½ cup of water with ½ cup of sugar with ¼ cup of your favorite gin and a splash of blood orange syrup. Squeeze ⅛ cup of fresh lemon or lime juice to round out the taste. Pair the pink, fruity result with champagne for a bubbly toast worthy of your occasion. Replace champagne with club soda or ginger ale for a virgin version that’s simply refreshing. Garnish with scooped balls of chilled watermelon floating in the cocktail or ornament the rim using watermelon wedges with decoratively carved peels.

Black Cherry Sangria

Summer cocktails don’t have to be all light and breezy. Sometimes you want a more full-bodied taste. Add the deep, sweet notes of black cherry to classic sangria for a drink as romantic as a red rose. In a large pitcher, combine 1½ cups of black cherry juice with 3 cups of red wine (Merlots and Syrahs work well) and ½ cup of brandy. Add cubed oranges and apples, pitted cherries, and fresh pomegranate seeds. If you like your sangria sweeter, stir in sugar, honey, or maple syrup to taste. To give your cocktail some bubbles, add ginger ale or champagne immediately before serving (depending on the alcohol level and how many people you want to serve, add anywhere from 2 to 4 cups). 

Honeydew Mint Lemonade

Lemonade is the most classic drink of the summer months. Tart citrus pairs with the sweetness of honeydew and the tingle of mint to create a refreshing palate cleanser that complements most hors d’oeuvres. Using a blender, puree ¼ cup of freshly-squeezed lemon juice with an equal amount of fresh mint sprigs and 2 cups of chopped, nearly-overripe honeydew melon. If you want to make an alcoholic drink, add your favorite rum to taste. Then pour in crushed ice and blend everything together. Skip the rum for a cooling beverage that’s as wholesome as your childhood lemonade stand. Garnish with lemon slices and sprigs of fresh mint. 

Mango Peach Frozen Daiquiri

Summon a taste of the tropics to your wedding with mango peach frozen daiquiris. In a blender, combine 1 cup of frozen, peeled mango slices and 1 cup of frozen peach slices. Add 3 tablespoons of freshly-squeezed lemon juice and ½ cup of freshly-squeezed orange juice. To make an alcoholic drink, add ½ cup of rum. If you prefer a sweeter drink, pour in a few teaspoons of sugar or honey. Blend everything with 2 cups of ice cubes for a smooth, frozen treat. Garnish with slices of fresh mango and peach.  

Peach Rye Julep

Did you know that, during the Kentucky Derby, around 80,000 mint juleps are enjoyed every year? But you’re not just 1 in 80,000. Mix up tradition by mixing in a little fruit for a summer drink that’s just peachy. Combine a few sprigs of fresh mint and ⅛ cup of simple syrup in a glass and muddle it well to release the flavor. Add ⅓ cup of rye whiskey and a splash of peach juice or peach Schnapps. Stir well and serve over crushed ice for a signature cocktail that’s sure to inspire even your least-excitable guest to feel like they’ve just picked a winner. 

Adding a few signature drinks to your wedding is the perfect way to help your festivities stand out. By pouring both virgin options and “adults only” versions, you’ll be sure every guest gets to experience your good taste. For extra entertainment, hire a bartender who pours with a bit of special flair.