Smoky drinks like this go great with barbecue or smoked meat. This variation on the classic Bloody Mary from North End Grill in NYC starts with a homemade San Marzano Bloody Mary mix, stirred with peaty Islay-style Scotch and spiked with vodka. A pickled onion garnish keeps things bright.
The Paper Plane
We're a little obsessed with this red cocktail, made with bourbon and Aperol, plus bittersweet Amaro Nonino and fresh, tart lemon juice.
A rosy red, delightfully bitter cocktail that will whet your appetite for a long day's cookout. In this "broken" Negroni, hold the gin and instead use sparkling wine mixed with Campari and sweet vermouth. (Note: if your sweet vermouth is more than a month old, throw it out and start fresh.)
For a fruity summer drink that isn't too sweet, look to fresh raspberries, which are showing up in farmers' markets right about now. This recipe from Kenneth McCoy of Ward III in NYC mixes the berries with white rum, lemon juice, agave syrup and spicy ginger beer for a long, tall refresher.
The Best Frozen Lime Margaritas
Want to prepare in advance for your 4th of July party? Make the base for this awesome fresh lime margarita at least 8 hours before blending and store it in your freezer. You'll blend it up with ice on the day of the party, and everyone will stay nice and cool.
If you've only had piña coladas at vacation resorts, you'll be impressed by this rich, not-too-sweet variation, made frothy with egg white and tart with freshly squeezed lime.
Toasted Coconut Horchata
We promise it's easy to make this classic alcohol-free Mexican drink—but it will still impress your friends. Toasted coconut flakes add extra flavor, and don't forget to garnish with fragrant cinnamon.
OK, it's clear, not quite white, but this drink is so refreshing and bright that it's ideal for a sunny 4th of July celebration. Crisp, herbal blanco tequila, tart lemon juice, grapefruit bitters and chilled sparkling water makes this drink perfect for scorching days.
The Curly and The Turk
This drink from The Tippler in New York was inspired by Rocket Pops, and it's about as blue as you can get. The bottom layer's a spicy hibiscus syrup, topped with an icy gin and lemon cocktail that's colored with blue curacao.
Blueberry Lime Rickey
This bluish-purple booze-free drink is colored with blueberries, so we'll let it count for July 4th, especially because it's so refreshing. The make-ahead syrup is made from frozen blueberries, and the drink is balanced with fresh lime juice.
Blueberry juice and fresh lavender give this nonalcoholic drink from Hawskworth in Vancouver, BC a hint of floral flavor and a vivid color. Garnish with fresh blueberries and lavender sprig if you want to get fancy.
Blue Hawaii Jelly Shots
If you want to really get the party started, these multilayered Blue Hawaii jello shots will do the trick. 4th of July festivities. They're spiked with vodka, rum, and blue curacao and sweetened with pineapple juice. Silicone candy molds are ideal for making these fancy jello shots into cute shapes.