POPSUGAR Food

11 Picnic-Perfect Cocktails

Jul 20 2013 - 5:30am

It's picnic season, and that means long, warm afternoons sprawled out on a blanket with good company, good food, and of course, good drinks. Keep things simple by choosing drinks that don't require a lot of complicated preparation like muddling. These 11 options can be made ahead of time, put in a pretty bottle or container, and enjoyed in the sunshine. Click through for the recipes.

— Additional reporting by Nicole Perry

Bloody Marys

Sunday picnics call for a big pitcher of Bloody Marys [1]. Keep it simple with a classic recipe, and sip the day away.

Tamarind Dark and Stormy

Meet our unofficial Summer drink, the tamarind dark and stormy [2]. Tangy, fizzy, and just sweet enough, it'll keep you cool while you lounge away your afternoon. Mix a batch pre-picnic and pack it into a travel thermos or swing-top glass bottle.

Gin and Citrus Soda Fizz

Lime and orange soda (we prefer Dry Soda's [3] less-sweet formula here) combine with gin and a few dashes of bitters for a easy-to-prepare cocktail [4]. Pack it into a few mason jars for mess-free travel, festive red, white, and blue ice cubes optional.

Mango-Raspberry White Wine Sangria

Make-ahead types will appreciate that this crisp, fruity white wine sangria [5] can (and should be) prepped long before your picnic in order to allow the flavors to meld. Mangos and raspberries not your thing? Try other seasonal fruit like nectarines, blackberries, or strawberries.

Mionetto Il Spr!z

Like an aperol spritz — the cocktail after which it's modeled — Mionetto Il Spr!z [6] is bitter, sweet, and fizzy. What's more it's both easy to tote along (just tuck a chilled bottle into your picnic basket) and great for day drinking, as it won't knock you off your feet.

Classic Margarita

While a classic margarita [7], like this recipe from San Francisco's iconic Tommy's Mexican Restaurant, is more potent than the majority of our picnic picks, we'd be loathe to leave it off the list. (Few drinks seem more enticing on Summer days.) Shake it up to perfection, pour it into a leak-proof bottle, and bring it along to kickstart your picnic fun.

Grapefruit Mimosas

Take a bunch of grapefruit juice (fresh or store-bought), put it in a bottle, and pop a bottle of Champagne once you get to the picnic for delicious mimosas [8].

Redheaded Ginger

While a bottle of well-chilled Lillet Rouge — a fruity red-wine based aperitif — would make for a great picnic sipper in its own right, this easy-to-love cocktail [9] kicks it up a notch. To simplify matters of transport and preserve its fizz, bring its ingredients and mix it just before enjoying.

Mionetto Il Ugo!

Mionetto Il Ugo! [10], a semisparkling white wine and elderflower concoction, is another pre-bottled option that you and your al fresco dining companions are sure to imbibe almost too easily.

Irish Buck

The Irish know how to enjoy themselves. Follow suit with an ultra-simple whiskey cocktail like an Irish buck [11]! It's refreshing, but it sure packs a punch.

Cocktail Mixers

Cocktail mixers [12] will inevitably make your picnic life easier. Just add booze, and you'll have yourself a really good time.


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