15 Creative Ways to Upgrade Your Summer Cocktail Occasion

Cocktails, Entertaining, Summer
on July 21, 2016

Summer is prime season for taking cocktail hour outside—long days full of sunshine, and warm temps just begging to be iced down with a cool sip of something sweet. Make your next occasion the toast of the season with these 15 fun cocktail party ideas.

DIY Drink Station

DIY Drink Station

Sugar and Charm

Set up a DIY drink station. Start with ingredients for two base cocktails, and let your guests pick the rest!

 

Cocktail Cubes

Cocktail Cubes

Earnest Home Co.

No one likes a watered down mojito, but summer heat melts ice cubes in a flash. Prevent dilution with a set of stunning frozen cocktail cubes, made with ingredients to match the cocktails you’re serving up.

 

Cocktails for a Crowd

Cocktails for a Crowd

James Ransom

If you’re hosting a summer party and don’t want to be mixing drinks all night, you’ll love this tip! A little simple math is all that stands between you and a yard full of happy guests (that you’re free to mingle with, for once).

 

DIY Ice Ring

DIY Punch Ice Ring

Food Network

Made drinks for a crowd and now you need to keep them cool? A DIY Ice Ring is the perfect way to keep your punch bowl chilled.

 

Sangria Granita

Sangria Granita

Sugar and Charm

Prefer to spoon instead of sip? Check out this delightfully boozy way to beat the summer heat.

 

Ice Bag with Floral Ice Cubes

Ice Bag with Floral Ice Cubes

Sugar and Charm

Fill an ice bag or bucket with floral ice cubes and a bottle of chilled rosé. It doubles as practical drink chiller and gorgeous centerpiece—just replace the bottle of rosé as needed.

 

Salted Watermelon Margarita Popsicles 

Salted Watermelon Margarita Popsicles

How Sweet Eats

Who doesn’t love a boozy popsicle? Serve this Salted Watermelon Margarita Popsicle in a glass with a salted rim. Guests can enjoy theirs on the stick, and if it melts, they’ll be left with an icy margarita.

 

Make-Ahead Frozen Margaritas

Make-Ahead Frozen Margarita

iStock

If you want to serve frozen margaritas, but the thought of spending all afternoon or evening at the blender doesn’t sound appealing, we’ve got you covered. Make your margaritas ahead of time and store them in mason jars in the freezer. The alcohol keeps them from freezing solid. When you’re ready for them, take them out of the freezer, pour and serve. To make things even easier, you can even serve them straight from the mason jars.

 

Summer Cocktail Twists

Summer Fruit Cocktails

Tina Rupp

Let the fruit of the season shine! Here are some summer-inspired twists on classic cocktails.

 

Classy Booze Cruise

Smoky and Spicy Paloma

Food52

Set sail in your own backyard with a classy “Booze Cruise” themed party. Serve the best cocktails the globe has to offer, with fun nautical touches throughout.

 

Grilled Mint Julep Peaches

Grilled Mint Julep Peaches

Stefano Coppola

How about some booze-bathed fruit, grilled and over vanilla ice cream? Dessert and drinks in one!

 

DIY Cocktail Glasses

DIY Hand Painted Glasses

Brittni Mehlhoff and Linda Jednaszewski

These fun, hand-painted glasses only take 10 minutes to make. Customize by choosing colors to match your party decor, and of course, what’s on the menu.

 

Creative Ways to Serve Drinks

Creative Ways to Serve Drinks

Rachel McNamara Photography

Think outside of the box when it comes to how and where you keep your drinks cold. Use unconventional items like wheelbarrows or steel wash basins for a rustic touch.

 

Fruit Ice Cubes

Fruit Ice Cubes

DesignLoveFest

Festive ice cubes are a great way to lend a little extra color to your cocktail glasses! Make yours by adding fruit, edible flowers and herbs to plain water. That way you can even use them in “virgin” variety libations.

 

DIY Floral Ice Bucket

Floral Ice Bucket

Sugar and Charm

Keep a bottle of your favorite champagne or wine cool with a DIY floral ice bucket. Just be sure to place them on a deep tray, or somewhere else that won’t mind a little melting.