Sunny afternoons are meant for lounging under shady trees with cool drinks, like these fruity variations. So find a tree, make a batch, and unwind.
Tropical Guava & Peach Fruit Cooler
Guava and peach nectars can be found in many Latin and Caribbean grocery stores, and some supermarkets carry them. You can use your own ginger beer or look for a ginger beer that suits your taste. Consider one with a nice note of sweet and a good kick of ginger.
2 cups peach nectar
1 cup guava nectar
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 2 limes)
10 whole mint leaves
2 cups ice
1 (12-ounce) bottle ginger beer
Combine peach nectar, guava nectar, pineapple juice, lime juice, and mint leaves in a large pitcher. Add ice and top with ginger beer. Stir to combine, and serve.
Virgin Pomegranate Lime Rickey
A classic summer cooler, a Lime Rickey mixed with fruit syrup is bubbly, limey, and thirst-quenching.
2/3 cup pomegranate juice (no sugar added)
2/3 cup granulated sugar
2 to 3 drops orange-flower water (optional)
4 cups club soda, chilled
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 2 medium limes)
Lime slices, for garnish
Heat the pomegranate juice in a small saucepan over medium heat until steam rises from the surface and a few bubbles have formed around the perimeter of the pan, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
Add the sugar and stir until it has dissolved and the mixture is no longer cloudy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the orange-flower water (if using) and let the syrup cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour.
Pour the chilled pomegranate syrup, club soda, and lime juice into a 6-cup pitcher and stir gently to combine (stirring too vigorously will deflate the fizz). Float lime slices in the pitcher. Serve over ice with additional lime slices.
This sweet Southern-style iced tea gives lemonade a run for its money as the official hot-weather drink.
For the tea
8 cups (2 quarts) water
8 green tea bags
1 bunch fresh mint
1 1/2 cups superfine or granulated sugar
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 4 medium limes)
6 fresh mint sprigs, for garnish (optional)
1 medium lime, cut into sixths, for garnish (optional
Place the water in a medium pot and bring to a simmer over high heat. Remove from heat, add the tea bags and mint, cover, and let steep for 10 minutes. Once the tea has steeped, discard the tea bags, add the sugar, and stir until the sugar has completely dissolved. Let cool to room temperature, then place in the refrigerator to cool completely, about 2 hours.
Once the tea is cold, remove the mint and stir in the lime juice. Taste and adjust with more lime juice or sugar as desired. Serve over ice with a sprig of mint and a wedge of lime (if using).
Recipes by R.W. Knudsen