Summer Books + Cocktails 2018
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With summer in full swing, we're finding we just want to be outside with our books, ice cold drink in hand. Can you blame us? We rounded up a few of the books we've been loving lately and paired them with some drinks that match them perfectly. Got a cocktail shaker handy? Let's do this!
Timely and pitch perfect, this short story collection explores the intimate corners of people's lives in a way that is nuanced and relatable. A trendy wine mixed with a jumble of flavors that meld together perfectly? Sounds like the perfect alcoholic embodiment of this book!
- 1 bottle of dry rosé wine
- .5 cup brandy
- .5 cup Grand Marnier
- 2 cups club soda
- 2 oranges, sliced
- 2 limes, sliced
- 1 cup melon cubes
- 1 pint strawberries, sliced
Add all the fruit to the bottom of the pitcher. Top with liquors and club soda. Stir, then refrigerate at least 30 minutes to let the flavors blend. Serve in wine glasses with ice.
Social Creature is one of summer's hottest thrillers and calls for a cocktail that is as sophisticated and trendy as Louise wants to be. We think a classic daiquiri fits perfectly with this novel and could easily be Louise's go-to bar order when she isn't quaffing free champagne. When served in elegant stemware this is timeless sophistication with a touch of glamour; it's not the strawberry pink slushy monstrosity you're imagining, but a drink that is simple, elegant, and not particularly sweet.
- Crushed Ice
- 2 oz light rum
- 1 oz lime juice
- .5 oz simple syrup
Put the ice in a cocktail shaker, add the rum, lime juice, and simple syrup. Shake well and strain into a chilled martini glass.
Mortals and fairies, a summer night, an enchanted forest, star-crossed lovers, beauty, love potions, magic flowers, and happy endings all around make this whimsical play one of my favorites. It's the perfect fantastical story to read under the stars on a warm summer evening. Cocktails for this book should be herby, fizzy, and fun: we recommend a rosemary gin fizz.
Rosemary Simple Syrup
- .5 cup sugar
- .5 cup water
- 4 sprigs rosemary
Combine in a saucepan and heat over medium until sugar completely dissolves while muddling rosemary. Let cool.
- .25 cup gin
- 1 T fresh lemon juice
- 1 T fresh lime juice
- .25 cup seltzer
Combine gin, citrus juices, and 2 tablespoons simple syrup in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well, strain into a rocks glass over ice and top with seltzer. Garnish with a rosemary sprig if desired.
Waugh is a gorgeous writer and recounts the relationship between two young men (one of whom is very rich, and very complicated) in the waning days of England's great houses. The book takes you from Oxford, to the English countryside, through Venice, on cruise ships to New York, to Morocco, and back into the "present day" where Charles, our narrator, is a Captain in the British army. Warm, nostalgic, and full of art, love, complicated friendships, grandeur and loss; it's just gossipy and opulent enough, but grounded with heavier themes. A classic Gin and Tonic is the perfect pairing; stiff and simple, yet luxurious.
- 2 oz gin
- 3 oz good tonic water
- 1/2 a lime, juiced
Add all ingredients to a highball glass with ice. Stir and garnish with a lime wedge.
Circe is a reimagining of the classic Greek myth, so we chose a cocktail that incorporates classic Greek flavors and is as yellow as Circe's famous eyes. Honestly, it tastes like a tasty, alcoholic falafel. Something about the herbs and all the botanicals in the gin just mix up nicely together, and give a really mediterranean feel. I guarantee this drink will be on repeat this summer around here!
- slices of cucumber
- 10 mint leaves
- 1.5 tsp simple syrup
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1.5 oz gin
In a cocktail shaker, muddle the mint, cucumber, and simple syrup. Fill shaker with ice, then add lime juice and gin. Shake, strain into a martini glass, and garnish with mint.
We were recently lucky enough to be sent a complimentary box from Bad People Book Club to test out! They design a cocktail to pair with a book and send you both the book and the ingredients (minus the alcohol) with a handy recipe card. We can 100% get behind their mission to encourage a chill night with friends discussing books with a cocktail to match.
The book we got was Everything Here is Beautiful, and the cocktail has some color changing wizardry involved to reflect one of the main character's shifting personality due to mental illness. Pretty cool, right? This was definitely one of the more inventive cocktails we've ever made ourselves, and it was super smooth and balanced with interesting flavors and not too much sweetness. Thanks again, Bad People Book Club!
Do you have a favorite drink you like to mix up in the summer? Or a great idea for a cocktail + book pairing?
We'd love to hear!