Posts tagged cocktail pairings
Summer Books + Cocktails 2018
*some links are affiliate, and we deeply appreciate your support. Some of these books were gifted to us by the publisher.

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!

P.S. Check out last year's summer books , book flights, and summer cocktails!


You Think It, I'll Say It | Curtis Sittenfeld


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!


Rosé Sangria

  • 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 | Tara Burton


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.


A Midsummer Night's Dream | William Shakespeare


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 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. 

Gin Fizz

  • .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. 


Brideshead Revisited | Evelyn Waugh


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.


Gin + Tonic

  • 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 | Madeline Miller


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! 


Cucumber Mint Gimlet

  • 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. 


Everything Here is beautiful | Mira Lee


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!





Fall Cocktail + Book Pairings

We've all had that experience where a book that you've been reading for several days is infecting your brain and mood and you just want a fun, tangible way to connect with it; so what better way to do that then with drink pairings? 

As the brightness of summer fades into the fresh, golden afternoons of autumn, we're re-stocking our home bars with flavors more complimentary for the season. Fall libations for me mean more complex, seasonal flavors, and drinks that pair well with autumnal meals. I don't like overly sweet drinks, and I admit whiskey is hands down my favorite base to build a drink around for this time of year. 

With that in mind, we made absolutely sure these pairings were not only easy to execute, but also felt genuinely true to the books. So whether you're throwing a bookish Halloween soiree or just want something to warm you up on a chilly night as you curl up with a great fall read, we've got you covered.

The Secret History


This book calls for a sophisticated sipper that reeks of autumn. The main characters are all too cool for school, generally elegant, and a little mysterious. This drink evokes all those things and tastes exactly like fall in your mouth. Plus, poured into a martini glass, it looks especially chic. 

Toronto Cocktail

Combine rye, Fernet, simple syrup, and bitters in a cocktail shaker and fill with ice. Shake until cold and strain into chilled glass. Squeeze a piece of orange peel over the drink and use as garnish.


Brideshead Revisited

"Four Alexander cocktails, please" says Anthony to the bartender, before drinking them all in quick succession. This is definitely an oldie, but it stands up well, and since it's directly mentioned in the text, we figured it deserved a place on this list. 

Alexander Cocktail

  • 1 oz gin
  • 1 oz white creme de cacao 
  • 1 oz half and half
  • nutmeg

Shake all ingredients (except nutmeg) with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Sprinkle nutmeg on top and serve.


The Night Circus

You're obviously going to want something that looks elegant and a little magical for this one; something that wouldn't be out of place at Le Cirque des Rêves. Glassware and dry ice will be key for the full effect, but we chose a drink that reminded us of a grown up version of caramel apples at the circus. This one is a little sweet, a little fizzy, but has a sterner backbone thanks to the whiskey. With the apple and ginger flavors, it just hits all the right notes for fall.

The Grave Digger

  • 2 oz hard cider
  • 1 oz whiskey
  • ginger ale - to fill
  • dry ice*

In a 12-16 ounce tumbler or high ball glass, combine the hard cider and whiskey. Fill the glass with crushed ice. Fill with ginger ale. *If you use dry ice, please don't consume the drink until it is fully melted!


Sleepy Hollow

Keeping it classic for this classic short story with a highly appropriate pumpkin twist. Of course, in the story the Headless Horseman famously chucks his head at Ichabod, and the next morning only hoof prints and a smashed pumpkin remain. If you like old fashioned's, you'll love this autumnal take on it!

Pumpkin Old Fashioned

  • 2 Tbsp pumpkin puree
  • 1.5 oz bourbon
  • 1 oz maple syrup
  • 1/2 oz Grand Marnier
  • 1 dash orange bitters

Combine pumpkin purée, bourbon, syrup, Grand Marnier and bitters in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake well and strain into a chilled old fashioned glass filled with ice. Garnish with an orange twist.


Murder On the Orient Express

A hot toddy seemed like the perfect warm, cozy drink for this cozy mystery. The old world charm of this drink fits the ethos of the novel perfectly, and is the best mug of deliciousness to sip while you get lost in the drama going on inside the train stuck in the snow.

Hot Toddy

  • 1 oz bourbon
  • 1 Tbsp honey
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup boiling water

Put bourbon, honey, and lemon juice in a 6-ounce mug. Top off with hot water and stir until honey is dissolved.

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Do you have any suggestions of book + drink pairings? Or a favorite drink for this time of year?