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Seasonal Mixology: 5 cocktails to keep you cool during the summer

Don Iler
The Broadside

It’s hot outside. You just floated the river, but you’re still sweating and you have an entourage that is thirsty and begs to be entertained. There is no reason to worry. With a few key ingredients, and a couple bottles appropriated from your parents liquor cabinet, you are on your way to creating some legendary and refreshing summer cocktails.

The simplest and best summer cocktail. A child can make this, but it still shows class when ordered. The British empire was built on this drink. It’s not hard to make, yet it says something about yourself; you might be rich, you might be old, you might fancy yourself as a character in a F. Scott Fitzgerald story. Indulge in a bottle of gin and some tonic water; at a minimum you won’t catch malaria.

Fill a small glass with ice
Pour 1.5 oz Gin into the glass
Top off with tonic water and garnish with a slice of lime. Stir.

Refreshing and settling after a meal. Imagine the sun is setting and you are playing bacci with friends. You are drinking, but no one cares who wins. Perhaps you killed a lion earlier. This classic drink deserves a piazza and fits perfectly into a Hemingway story.

Fill a small glass with ice
Pour a 1 oz gin, 1oz Campari, and ¾ oz sweet Vermouth into the glass.
Stir and garnish with a wedge of orange if desired.

A real Daquiri doesn’t require a blender or fruit. But no one knows that or cares. If you happen to own a blender and fruit is on sale at the store or local farmer’s market, you have yourself a party. The key to this drink is adapting it to your taste; maybe you like more rum and less sugar, maybe you like more fruit, maybe you don’t have rum but you have gin or vodka. The key to this drink is alcohol, fruit, sugar and ice. Combine those ingredients pleasantly. Remember, you can always add but never take away.

In a blender, put several ice cubes, 5-6 strawberries, a banana, the juice of one fresh lime, 2-3 tablespoons of sugar, and 3-6 oz of rum. Blend the ingredients and serve with a garnish of lime. If serving for many, double the ingredients. If you are out of rum, substitute gin or vodka, it’s even better.

This is my favorite cocktail of all time. It is deadly refreshing. Simple but when put it together, you look like a pro. An amateur might think that this looks like a mojito with gin instead of rum, but it is more refined and complex. When I drink this, I imagine cicadas hissing, seersucker shorts and a humid day. Which doesn’t really apply to Bend, but if it did, this would fit in.

Muddle the leaves from a twig of mint in a shaker along with the juice of half a lime, a dash or two of Agnostura Bitters, and a tablespoon of simple syrup.
Add ice to the shaker along with 1-3 oz of gin. Shake vigoursly. Pour contents into a rocks glass. Garnish with a wedge of lime and some mint if desired. Also, one may pour tonic or club soda into the drink if it is too strong, though I think that is a weak move.

Let’s face it. You’re in college and the only reason you’re here is that you got laid off a few months ago and the unemployment department approved you for TUI. You don’t have the money to maintain a bar or fix fancy drinks. Bi-Mart has PBR or Hamms on sale every other week; go ahead, indulge.

With an 12, 18, 24 or 30 pack of beer, place the cans into a cooler. Fill the cooler with ice. Drink the beer. Perhaps put your can in a cozy to prevent it from getting warm sooner. Enjoy American, you’ve earned your right to drink light, tasteless beer.

You may contact Don Iler at




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