10 Summer Whiskey Cocktails that Go Down a Treat

October 31, 2022 by

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Summer whiskey cocktails are a lovely way to cool down when the days grow longer, and the end of a long, warm day offers a lovely opportunity to slow down and sip something refreshing with some friends.   

Whether you are hosting an outdoor cocktail party, planning a barbeque, or simply want to shake up a quick drink to toast another fine summer’s day, a whiskey-based cocktail is always a treat. Here are ten of our all-time favourites to try at home:   

1. Pickle Juice Whiskey Sours Cocktail

Pickle Juice Whiskey Sours

Of course, refreshing whiskey drinks do not always have to be sweet. If you are feeling a little adventurous and keen to introduce your taste buds to something completely novel, may we please introduce the Pickle Juice Whiskey Sours. It’s kind of like a Dirty Martini, only with more Southern-style dapperness.  

Simply combine 45ml bourbon, 20ml fresh lemon juice, 15ml pickle juice syrup, and one egg white in a cocktail shaker with ice, shake it up, and strain it into a coupe glass. The pickle juice syrup you make by combining ½ a cup of pickle juice and ½ cup of white sugar, bringing it to a boil over heat, and then letting it cool down completely before use. 

2. Mint Julep Cocktail

Mint Julep

Summer whiskey cocktails seldom get any more iconic than the Mint Julep.  It really is like a sip of summer in a glass — minty-cool and a little sweet with just enough kick to hold the heat at bay. The magic of this drink lies in the trifecta of bourbon, mint, and syrup working together like a charm. 

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3. Boulevardier Cocktail

Boulevardier Cocktail

Erskine Gwynne was an American-born writer who founded a monthly magazine in Paris called Boulevardier in the roaring twenties, and the creation of the iconic Boulevardier cocktail is ascribed to her.  

It combines 45ml Wild Turkey 101 Bourbon, 30ml Campari, and 30ml Cinzano Vermouth Rosso sweet vermouth to create a strong sipping drink that perfectly punctuates a warm evening. Whiskey cocktails for summer do not come any more 1920s than this.  

4. Manhattan Cocktail

Front view of Manhattan Cocktails garnished with fresh cherries

Arguably one of the best summer whiskey cocktails ever invented, the iconic Manhattan cocktail consists of just 3 familiar parts; namely whiskey, vermouth, and bitters. For a cocktail that’s whiskey-based, it’s surprisingly mellow and sweet. One sip offers vanilla and oak notes from the rye whiskey, along with the sweet and spicy flavors of vermouth and some bitter notes to finish. 

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5. Old Fashioned Cocktail 

Old fashioned cocktail with cherry and orange peel garnish

Over the years, Old Fashioned cocktail ingredients haven’t changed much. You still only need bourbon, sugar, bitters, and water to create this well-known amber-coloured drink. Back in those days, bartenders didn’t have all the mod cons they do today, so learning how to make an Old Fashioned was really quite simple—and still is.   

There you have it – nine summer whiskey cocktails that go down a treat when the weather is hot, and a nice, cool drink is called for. Let us know which one is your favourite and remember to tag us in your social posts when you share pics of your gorgeous-looking cocktails online!  

6. Kentucky Mule Cocktail

Kentucky Mule Cocktail

As far as refreshing whiskey cocktails go, the Kentucky Mule is one of the easiest and most satisfying to whip up at home if you are keen on keeping things simple.  A riff on the classic Moscow Mule, it combines 2 oz bourbon, and ½ oz of fresh lime juice with mint and ginger beer, optionally served in a copper mug to keep it nice and cool. 

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7. Shandy Maker

Beer shandies with lemon on wooden board

Nothing beats an ice-cold lager in summer, even better if it’s paired with bourbon like in the Shandy Maker cocktail. This beer-based drink leans towards a brighter and juicier side relying on a hoppy and floral IPA, alongside herbs. However, this cocktail pushes the definition of a Shandy adding overproof bourbon. The summery feeling is achieved by adding fresh lemon and grapefruit juice to the mix. Perfect for a hot afternoon in your backyard or porch.   

8. Gold Rush

Zodiac Bees-Knees Cocktail - The Zodiac Bees-Knees Cocktail, a unique and flavourful drink.

The delightful Gold Rush is a whiskey-laced spin on the Bee’s Knees, which combines 60ml bourbon, 20ml fresh lemon juice, and 20ml honey syrup that is shaken with ice and strained into a rocks glass over fresh ice. Incidentally, honey syrup is a simple syrup that is very easy to make at home by whisking together equal parts honey and water over heat, and letting it cool before use. 

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9. Bourbon Rickey

Close-up top shot of a Bourbon Rickey garnished with a piece of lime, with a decanter of bourbon and a sliced lime visible the side

Sometimes you’ve got to get back to basics to enjoy the captivating flavours of truly great ingredients, and that’s where the Bourbon Rickey comes in. This super simple cocktail can be poured in two minutes flat, but the elements thereof come together so beautifully that it tastes like an elegant drink that took far longer to compose.

Read next: How to Host a BYOB Party & How to Attend One

10. Classic Whiskey Sour

A pair of Whiskey Sour Cocktails posed against a grey marble finish backdrop

The sweet, slightly tart Whiskey Sour is an absolute classic with its retro foam topping and a real game-changer in terms of mouthfeel. The addition of egg white softens the acidity of the drink, giving it a rather luxurious texture without altering the flavour.

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