Stepping outside in mid-July feels like a sauna here in the South, and the “City Lights” staff officially declares that we’ve had enough: it’s too darn hot! Fortunately, Atlanta offers plenty of alternatives to sweltering in the heat, and we’ll bring you options this summer on where to go and what to consume.
Today, libations expert Jerry Slater crafts what he describes as “lighter, sparkling and refreshing” cocktails to cool you down. Slater co-authored the forthcoming “Southern Foodways Alliance Guide to Cocktails,” which will be available Oct. 5 from the University of Georgia Press.
Below are the cocktails Jerry Slater whipped up for Lois Reitzes:
- 2 ounces freshly squeezed ruby red grapefruit juice
- 1 1/2 ounces vodka, such as Cathead
- ½ ounce rosemary syrup (see recipe below)
- 3 to 4 ounces soda or mineral water
Place grapefruit juice, vodka and rosemary syrup into a shaker, add ice and shake. Strain into ice-filled glass, top with soda water and garnish with rosemary sprig.
- 1 cup water
- 1 cups sugar
- 3 rosemary sprigs
Place water and sugar into a small saucepan set over high heat and bring to a boil. Boil for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, add rosemary, cover and steep for 30 minutes. Strain and cool until room temperature. Refrigerate in a lidded container for up to 3 weeks.
Watermelon Refresher (Spiked Agua Fresca)
- 1.5 ounces Cachaça (or white rum, tequila or favorite white spirit)
- 4 ounces watermelon agua fresca (see recipe below)
Combine ingredients in a rocks glass with ice, stir and enjoy.
- 1 quart Watermelon juice
- 4 ounces fresh lime juice
- 2 ounces simple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 ounce gin
- 1 ounce sweet vermouth
- 1 ounce bitter liqueur (Campari, Gran Classico, St. George Bruto, etc.)
- club soda or mineral water*
Combine first three ingredients in a rocks or wine glass, add ice and stir, top with sparkling water. Add orange wheel garnish.
*Spritz option: substitute Prosecco sparkling wine for water and omit gin.
“Too Darn Hot” is a summer-long series on “City Lights” about things to do to cool off.