Going out to bars and clubs just isn’t what it used to be. (Thanks a lot, Covid.)
With limited opening hours and various social restrictions, you might prefer – and feel safer – imbibing in your own home now.
So we’ve put together cocktail and mocktail recipes that are tropical and fruity, easy to make and mouth-wateringly tasty. And they’re fairly interchangeable: Add or leave out the liquor as needed. We’ll drink to that.
1. Tequila Sunrise with a Twist
Ingredients: 3 parts tequila, 6 parts orange juice, 1 part pink guava juice, slices of fresh lime or orange for garnish
Recipe: Fill a glass with ice. Combine tequila and orange juice in a jug (you can also do this ahead of time — even the night before). Stir and pour over ice. Slowly pour in the pink guava juice, and let it sink to the bottom (don’t stir). Garnish and serve.
2. Sweet Sea Breeze
Ingredients: 1 part vodka, 1 part pineapple juice, 1 part cranberry juice, fresh pineapple slices and mint leaves for garnish
Recipe: Combine all liquids in a blender, whizz it up. Decorate glass with a fresh slice of pineapple and a mint sprig.
3. Enter The Dragon Fruit
Ingredients: 1 part vodka, 1/2 pink flesh dragon fruit, 1/2 cup crushed ice, 1/2 cup coconut water, 1/2 cup lime juice (optional)
Recipe: Slice the top off the dragon fruit. Peel back the skin with your fingers, or use a spoon to scoop out the flesh, leaving the peel whole (you can use it as a serving glass, because you’re so fancy). Put vodka, fruit, coconut water and crushed ice in a blender. Pulse a few times to combine. For more tang, add lime juice and pulse again. Pour and serve. (This mix also makes a great mocktail! Replace the vodka with more coconut water.)
4. Pineapple Screwdriver
Ingredients: 1 part vodka, 2 parts pineapple juice, 1 part crushed ice (optional), fresh pineapple wedges for garnish
Recipe: Add vodka, pineapple juice and crushed ice to a blender. Whizz till slushy. Serve in a short glass and garnish with a chunk of pineapple.
5. Classic Aperol Spritz
Ingredients: Ice cubes, 3 parts Prosecco or sparkling wine, 3 parts Aperol or Campari, splash of soda water, fresh orange slices for garnish
Recipe: Fill glasses generously with ice cubes. Pour Prosecco over the ice. Add Aperol or Campari and finish with a dash of soda. Garnish with a slice of orange.
6. Watermelon and Fresh Ginger Granita
Ingredients: 1 fresh watermelon, 1 chunk of young ginger root (about the size of your thumb), 2 fresh limes, vodka, crushed ice, 1/2 bunch of fresh mint for garnish
Recipe: Cut the watermelon in half. (Reserve a few slices to use as decoration. Wrap the slices in foil and place in the fridge or freezer.) Chop the rest of the melon into chunks, removing as many seeds as you can. Roughly chop or grate the ginger (young ginger has a thin skin, so there’s no need to peel it.) Finely grate lime zest and squeeze out all the juice. Place it all in a large resealable freezer bag. Freeze overnight until it’s rock hard. (Don’t add vodka to this bag because it stops the watermelon from freezing.) Before serving, put frozen mix into a blender with a few ice cubes. Add a slug of vodka at this point if you want to, and blitz into a pink slushy. Serve topped with the reserved frozen watermelon and mint.
7. Tropical Rum Punch
Ingredients: Ice, 1 part vodka, 1 part gin, 1 part rum, 1/2 part orange liquer, 1/2 part lemon juice, bottle of cola, mint leaves for garnish
Recipe: Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Pour the vodka, gin, rum, orange liquer and lemon juice into the shaker. Cover and shake well to combine and chill. Pour the mixture into ice-filled glasses so they’re a quarter full, then top up with cola. Garnish with mint leaves and serve.
8. G+T Punch
Ingredients: 2-3 sprigs fresh rosemary, 2 cups of any fresh, firm fruits (sliced or cut into cubes), 1 part gin, 2 parts tonic water, slices of lemon or lime for garnish
Recipe: Set aside 1/3 of the fruit and 1/2 of the rosemary for decoration. In a big bowl, slightly crush the rest of the fruits and rosemary using a pestel or the back of a wooden spoon. Add about half a cup of gin to cover the fruit. Let the mixture sit overnight in the fridge until it’s fruity and fragrant. To serve, pour into a jug and top with 1 part gin to 2 parts tonic. Garnish with fruit slices and rosemary sprigs. (For a mocktail, use sparkling lemonade instead of the gin and the tonic water.)
Ingredients: Blended whisky, club soda, ice, a slice of fresh lemon or mint leaves for garnish
Recipe: Fill a highball glass with ice. Pour whiskey over the ice, then slowly pour in the club soda and garnish.
These swanky booze-free mixers can be shared with the fam and guarantee no hangover the next day.
1. Sparkling Sangria
Ingredients: 3 cups grape juice, 3 cups carbonated water, LOTS of fruits – the more the better (apples, strawberries, oranges, plums — go wild!)
Recipe: Combine all the ingredients in a large pitcher and leave overnight to allow the flavours to mix. Trying not to gulp it down before it’s ready is the hardest part.
2. Safe Sex on the Beach
Ingredients: 50ml cranberry juice, 50ml grapefruit juice, 30ml peach nectar, ice
Recipe: Pour ingredients over ice and stir. How hot is that?
3. Piña No-lada
Ingredients: ¼ cup coconut water, ¼ cup coconut milk, 1 cup ice, ¼ cup diced pineapple chunks, ¼ banana
Recipe: Put everything into a blender and whirr away until smooth. Pretend to be on the sand someplace balmy at sunset.
Ingredients: 100ml ginger ale, 50ml apple juice, 1 teaspoon brown sugar, 10ml simple syrup, mint leaves, 1 lime
Recipe: In a cocktail shaker, muddle the sugar, syrup, mint leaves and freshly squeezed lime juice from the lime. Add the ginger ale and apple juice. Top up with more mint leaves to serve.
5. The Dark Invader
Ingredients: 50ml pineapple juice, 15ml vanilla syrup, 10 blackberries, ice
Recipe: Combine the pineapple juice, vanilla syrup and blackberries in a cocktail shaker and muddle well. Then add the ice and shake vigorously before straining into a glass.
6. Lemonade with Pomegranate Jewels
Ingredients: 1 part sparkling lemonade or sparkling water, 1 fresh pomegranate with its seeds removed or 1/2 part pomegranate juice, lemon slices and fresh mint leaves for garnish
Recipe: In a tall glass, pour in a tablespoon of fresh pomegranate seeds or around 1/4 cup of pomegranate juice. Top with lemonade or sparkling water – you’re aiming for layers of colour. Garnish with slices of lemon and fresh mint. Serve with a long spoon or straw so guests can mix their own drink.
7. Cucumber-Lime Detox
Ingredients: a big bottle of sparkling water, 1 sliced cucumber (Japanese or seedless), fresh slices of lemon or lime, mint leaves for garnish
Recipe: Pour everything into a large pitcher, top with ice cubes and serve.
Originally by Tara Barker, October 2018 + Tan Min Yan, Her World, August 2015 / Last updated by Brooke Glassberg