For those who like drinking in the sunshine, it’ll please you to know the Aperol Spritz is going nowhere and will remain a firm favourite. But there are some home-grown alternatives that are definitely worth trying out, including Aker English Rose Aperitif and Aperitivo Co Venice Aperitivo. Serve them with some soda, or add to a white wine spritz to colour your summer pink. Not only are aperitivi on the menu, but bitter-style spirits are also on the up and make great long drinks. If you want to really twist it up try the drink that is driving the Jamaicans wild: a shot of Campari mixed with Ting – that’s definitely one to get the tastebuds going…
With the gin and tonic being very passé and everyone looking for the next drinking trend, there are two spirits really shaking things up in the drinks category. Vodka is back, and it’s not just for knocking back with a mixer now – it’s the hero in the drink. With martinis being the new ‘in’ cocktail, make this a martini madness summer by ditching the gin and grab your vodka out of the freezer for that perfect summer drink. And if you’re just too lazy to do that, WhiteBox does a great Freezer Martini in a can.
If vodka isn’t your thing, unaged rums – aka white rums – are the way to go, but try the ones packed with flavour, like Jamaica’s overproofs (like Worthy Park’s Rum-Bar), the agricoles of Martinique (check out Clément Blanc) or even head to Scotland if you want to make it local (try Nine Folds). A great summer serve is one of these rums with a grapefruit soda or even coconut water, which are sure to bring the sunshine even in the worst British summer.
Whisky is traditionally seen as a drink for long winter nights, but take it from me: this is no longer the case. The whisky soda is back with a vengeance, but sexed up with things like shiso leaves and hand-carved ice. If you’re a garnish junky then bespoke your own highball, or even add a drop of a quirky bitter to go one step further (and all with not a lot of effort). For the whisky, try lighter and fresher styles – for example an Irish whiskey (Jameson) or a blended Scotch (Dewars 8 Year Old Ilegal). For the ultimate whisky soda for the flavour hunter, don’t be afraid to throw a peated whisky into the glass for more punch.
Whatever you choose to drink this summer, don’t be afraid to throw caution to the wind and try something different.