Mezcal & bourbon cocktails perfect for late summer & early fall

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If you tend to shy away from “heavier” liquor in the summer, opting for cocktails made with vodka, gin, tequila or rum, have we got some news for you!

Bourbon and mezcal are marvelous in a multitude of summer cocktails. But these tasty elixirs also have the body you want as the weather grows cooler, making them perfect for the end of summer.

Now, you’re not going to want to pull out your $2,500 bottle of Pappy Van Winkle or $1,700 bottle of Clase Azul Ultra Anejo for such mixtures, obviously, but you do still want the foundation of your drinks to be a smooth and flavorful bourbon.

The following cocktails are made with some good quality bourbon and mezcals that we just love. They make the perfect base and won’t break the bank.

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We hope you find them as smooth and refreshing as we did.

Image Credit: Fresh Victor.

The Mint Monster

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 oz Ardbeg An Oa mezcal
  • 3 lemon wedges
  • ¾ oz simple syrup
  • 4 mint leaves
  • Mint sprig to garnish

DIRECTIONS

Muddle your lemon wedges in a shaker. Pour in the whisky, simple syrup, mint leaves, and ice. Shake well until mixed and chilled. Strain the mixture into a glass filled with ice. Garnish with the mint sprig.

Image Credit: Ardbeg An Oa mezcal.

The Berry Refreshing

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ½ Four Roses Small Batch
  • ¾ fl. oz. Lemon Juice
  • 5 Raspberries
  • ½ fl. oz. Agave Syrup
  • 3 fl. oz. Barritt’s Ginger Beer
  • 1 Mint sprig

DIRECTIONS

In a glass, muddle raspberries with agave syrup. Add the rest of the ingredients and ice, stir. Top with ginger beer and stir briefly to incorporate. Garnish with mint.

Image Credit: Four Roses.

The Kentucky Mule

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 fl. oz. Four Roses Bourbon
  • 4 fl. oz. Barrit’s Ginger Beer
  • 2 Lime Wedges

DIRECTIONS

Squeeze one lime wedge and pour Bourbon into a Mule mug or Collins glass. Fill with ice and top with ginger beer. Garnish with second lime wedge.

Image Credit: .

The Tropical Sunset

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ½ fl. oz. Four Roses Small Batch
  • 6 dice-size chunks Pineapple
  • 1 – 2 slices Habanero (remove seeds for less spice)
  • ½ fl. oz. Lime Juice
  • 3 fl. oz Barritt’s Ginger Beer
  • 2 dashes Angostura Bitters

SPICE LEVEL: 2/3

DIRECTIONS

In a shaker, muddle the pineapple and habanero. Add the Bourbon, lime juice, and ice and shake briefly (about 4 seconds). Open the shaker and add 2 oz ginger beer to the cocktail in the shaker. Strain all contents into a glass with ice. Top with 1 oz ginger beer. Float 2 dashes of Angostura over the drink and garnish with a lime wedge.

Image Credit: Four Roses.

Late Summer Margarita

INGREDIENTS

  • 1.5 on Mezcal Amarás Cupreata
  • 1.5 on Cucumber Water (English Cucumber washed, blend with 1 cup of water including the peel, fine strain, this is the water)
  • 1 oz fresh Line Juice
  • 0.5 oz Agave Nectar

DIRECTIONS

Add all ingredients to a shaker with ice and shake. Pour over the glass with fresh ice. Garnish one side of the rim with Tajin and a cucumber peel.

Image Credit: Mezcal Amarás Espadin.

The Southern Heat

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ½ fl. oz. Four Roses Small Batch
  • ½ fl. oz. Lemon Juice
  • 2 slices Peach
  • ¼ fl. oz. Honey
  • 2 – 5 slices Red Hatch Chilies
  • 3 fl. oz. Barritt’s Ginger Beer

SPICE LEVEL: 3/3 

DIRECTIONS

In a shaker, combine peach slices, honey, and 2-5 red hatch chilies (depending on spice level) muddle together. Add Bourbon, lemon juice, and ice and shake briefly (about 4 seconds). Open the shaker and add 2 oz ginger beer and stir. Strain over fresh ice into a Collins glass. Top with 1 oz ginger beer, garnish with lemon twist, and shaved peppers.

Image Credit: Four Roses.

The Cactus Pear Cosmo

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 oz Fresh Victor Cactus Pear & Pomegranate
  • 1.5 oz Vodka
  • .5 oz Cointreau
  • Lime wedge

SHAKER DIRECTIONS

In a cocktail shaker, add all ingredients, fill the shaker with ice, shake well (to chill and dilute) and strain up into a cocktail glass; squeeze and then drop the lime wedge into the glass.

Build Method

In a glass filled with ice, add all ingredients, plus 1.5 oz of water (for dilution), stir gently, strain into another glass, garnish and serve.

Non-Alcoholic Version – Mocktail

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 oz Cactus Pear & Pomegranate
  • 1 oz 100% Fresh Orange Juice
  • .25 oz Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 oz Water

DIRECTIONS

Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled with ice, shake well and strain up into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a lime wedge and serve.

Image Credit: Fresh Victor.

The Bee Sting

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ½ fl. Oz. Four Roses Small Batch
  • ½ fl. Oz. Lemon Juice
  • ½ fl. Oz. Honey
  • 3 fl. Oz. Barritt’s Ginger Beer
  • 4 Blackberries (at max ripeness, more if not ripe)
  • 2 pinches Black Pepper

SPICE LEVEL: 1/3

DIRECTIONS

Combine honey, blackberries and black pepper in a glass, muddle. Add the lemon juice, bourbon and ice to the glass. Top with ginger beer and give a short stir. Garnish with a lemon wedge, three blackberries on a cocktail pick, and a sprinkle of black pepper.

Image Credit: Four Roses.

Want more tasty cocktail ideas?

This article was produced and syndicated by MediaFeed.org.

Image Credit: gmast3r / istockphoto.

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Constance Brinkley-Badgett

Constance Brinkley-Badgett is MediaFeed’s executive editor. She has more than 20 years of experience in digital, broadcast and print journalism, as well as several years of agency experience in content marketing. She has served as a digital producer at NBC Nightly News, Senior Producer at CNBC, Managing Editor at ICF Next, and as a tax reporter at Bloomberg BNA.