Our Favourite Summer Cocktails

There is nothing like having a nice, cold drink with your food at a BBQ party. It is quick and easy to open up a can or bottle of beer or wine, but it can be great to try something different like a refreshing cocktail.

But what is the ultimate summer cocktail? Is it a sweet Tequila Sunrise? A tropical Piña Colada? Or a classic Martini?

Whatever your tipple, there are loads of cocktails you can mix up for family & friends at summer cookouts. Our team here at Garden Trends have chosen their favourite cocktails for you to try, along with fantastic tips on how to create your own version.

Bloody Mary

When you think about classic cocktails, the Bloody Mary tends to be one that comes up the most. Known as the "hangover cure", this red beverage is a meal and drink all rolled into one with its combination of tomato juice and vodka, plus various spices and seasonings (e.g. Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, black pepper).

It is also completely adaptable, so you can think outside the box and put your own twist on it. For example, you can try using Thai ingredients to add extra spice to your drink (e.g. Thai chili pepper, Cilantro sprig). Or you can make a Red Snapper, which is a "Bloody Mary with gin".


Sweet and sour yet really refreshing, the Margarita truly represents the taste of summer and is guaranteed to get any party started. The ingredients commonly used in this cocktail are tequila, lime juice, and orange liqueur. However, like the Bloody Mary, you can create other flavours to make this cocktail your own. Some of the most popular Margarita flavours include Strawberry, Mango, and Pineapple.  

Tequila Sunrise

Perfect on a hot day, this tropical drink captures the essence of summer with its bright streaks of colour. It has three key ingredients - orange juice, grenadine, and tequila - all of which have their own layer and is unmixed to maintain the colour on each layer. 

Although it is very easy to make, each layer needs to be formed correctly in order to gain its classic sunrise look.

Fill your glass with ice, pour the tequila over the ice, and then top with fresh orange juice. Add the grenadine and let it drop down to the bottom of the glass; this will create the cocktail's layered effect. Use a orange wedge if you would like to garnish your cocktail.

To add an extra kick, apply a pinch of salt. You can also try different kinds of alcohol and ingredients to create new and exciting flavours.

Gin & Tonic

One of the world's most famous blends - the Gin & Tonic! Light and refreshing, this simple mixed drink only needs two main ingredients and a bit of lime; all of which are classically combined flavours. This is a great choice at any BBQ party!

This is another great cocktail you can experiment with. To take it another level, you can make this drink using different gins and tonics as well as other ingredients. Here are some ideas:

  • Add herbal gin and a tablespoon of elderflower liqueur to your glass. Put in identical amounts of champagne and tonic water. Top your drink with sage leaves and a lemon wedge.
  • Use a zesty and citrus gin. Then, pour a tablespoon of vermouth and put in a hint of peach bitters. Top your glass with tonic water and garnish with a fair amount of summer berries.
  • Add a touch of the Mediterranean to your Gin & Tonic using a spicy gin and a Mediterranean-style tonic. Use herb sea salt to rim your glass and then add a sprig of fresh rosemary.