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Summer cocktails from Ralston's Amber Hillier 

There are a lot of things to love about the season finally turning hot for the summer. You have more excuses to be in or near a pool, more opportunities to catch some rays and socks are never required. The other upside? More time outside for cocktails. “You want a more refreshing drink in the summer,” says Amber Hillier, a kickass bartender over at Ralston’s draft house, who suggests stopping by the Mass Ave bar for an intro to craft cocktails for beer lovers looking to make the switch. You can make these guys at home in your own bar, or leave it up Hillier to build with expert precision.

If you want to pin these, scroll on down to the jpeg at the bottom of the page. 

South Beach martini
2 oz Absolut Elyx Vodka
1 oz Campari
.5 oz Honey Syrup
.5 oz Fresh Lemon Juice
1 Egg White


In a cocktail shaker, dry shake (without ice) all ingredients very well. Add ice and shake again to chill. Strain into a Martini glass and garnish with a lemon or orange twist.

For Maximum Summer: Consume while wearing a big, floppy hat, giant sunglasses and a bedazzled caftan.

Jalapeño margarita
1 1/2 oz Blanco Tequila
1/3 oz Cointreau
1/3 oz Fresh Lime Juice
1/3 oz Simple Syrup
3 Cucumber wheels
1-2 jalapeño slice, seeded

In a cocktail shaker, lightly muddle cucumber, lime juice jalapeño and simple syrup. Add the rest of the ingredients and ice. Shake well and fine strain into a rocks glass with fresh ice. Rim can be salted if desired.

For Maximum Summer: Consume before setting off an excessive number of bottle rockets, bonus points for launching them handheld.

Mounds Bar martini
3 oz Dorda Double Chocolate Liqueur
1 oz Coconut-infused Rum
Splash Chopin Rye Vodka

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker. Add ice and shake well. Strain into a martini glass. Garnish with dark chocolate shavings.

For Maximum Summer: Consume while binge-watching Orange is the New Black on a rainy summer day

Whisky shandy
2 oz. Whisky
1 oz. orange juice
2 oz. lemonade
your beer of choice (I would use a blonde)

Build directly into pint or pilsner glass filled with ice and garnish with orange slice

For Maximum Summer: Consume while gazing proudly over a freshly-mowed lawn

Pineapple and sage gimlet
7.5 oz Bombay Sapphire gin
3.75 oz lime juice
3 oz simple syrup
7 sage leaves
5 oz pineapple juice
Build in punch bowl with ice, stir and serve. Servers about 5-6 ppl

For Maximum Summer: Consume during large pitch-in style cook-out with all of your family and friends

Greta Garbo
1.5 oz Absolut Vanilla
1 oz lime juice
1 oz simple syrup
5 raspberries
bar spoon of rose water
5 oz prosecco

Muddle 5 raspberries, add ingredients. Shake and strain with a mesh strainer into martini glass and top with the prosecco

For Maximum Summer: Consume in a shady cabana with your summer fling, post- or pre-coitus optional. 



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Sarah Murrell

Sarah Murrell

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Sarah Murrell covers all things food, beverages and sometimes gives decent sex and relationship advice. You can stream her consciousness on Twitter, if that's where life has brought you.

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