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The Best Tropical Cocktails for Summer

- Ian Centrone 19 May 2017
The Best Tropical Cocktails for Summer

With summer just a few weeks away, we’re already eagerly counting down until our weekends can be spent lounging poolside, gathering with friends, and hosting sun-kissed soirees. A diverse repertoire of seasonal cocktails is a great way to elevate any get-together, and, done right, can add a tropicalicious touch to any affair.

Keep reading to see some of our favorite cocktail recipes ranging from creative concoctions to magical mocktails that everyone is sure to enjoy all summer long. And even though these drinks are Pinterest-worthy on their own, kick up your presentation by serving them with our LAMAI hand-spun bamboo coasters – arriving later this month!


Jalapeño Grapefruit Margarita

jalapeno margarita

Image courtesy Eat Well 101

Talk about the perfect blend of spicy and sweet! The heat of the jalapeños is countered by the refreshing addition of graprefruit, and the sugary/peppery rim of the glass provides an enjoyable but unexpected twist. You find the recipe on Eat Well 101 and see additional photos of their step-by-step instructions. 


  • 1 1/2 cups (350ml) tequila
  • 2 cups (500ml) grapefruit juice
  • 3/4 cups (180ml) fresh lime juice
  • 4 tablespoons honey
  • 1-2 whole jalapeños, sliced
  • Lime and grapefruit slices, for garnish
  • Granulated sugar and fresh cracked pepper, for rimming the glasses


  1. In a shallow plate, combine sugar and pepper. You’ll use this mixture to rim the glasses.
  2. Combine all the ingredients in a pitcher and stir well to combine. Keep refrigerated for 30 minutes to 2 hours, checking spiciness from time to time. Remove the jalapeños from the drink once the desired spiciness is reached.
  3. When ready to serve, rim your glasses in the sugar and pepper mixture. Add ice cubes to each glass and pour the margaritas over. Add a grapefruit, a lime wedge and jalapeño slices for garnish, if desired.

Sparkling Sake Sangria

sake sangria

Image courtesy of Sugar and Charm

Sangria is essentially synonymous with summer, but this unique version really caught our eye! Similar to your traditional sangria, this approach includes soaking fruit in Sake, a sweet but delicious plum wine. The best part is it’s super easy to make – simply slice, soak, serve, and sip! See more on Sugar And Charm


  • 2 cucumbers, sliced
  • 2 cups juicy pineapple, cut into chunks
  • 2 cups plum wine
  • 2 cups sparkling sake
  • 1 star fruit, sliced


  1. Add the fruit and plum wine into a small pitcher and let it sit to soak for at least a few hours (or overnight!).
  2. Top with sparkling sake, give it a stir and then serve.


Blackberry Whiskey Lemonade

blackberry whiskey lemonade

Image courtesy Life as a Strawberry

A drink that combines three of our favorite things! This refreshing libation comes from our friends at Life as a Strawberry and is sure to be a crowd pleaser. Tart and tangy, the fresh rosemary adds a savory depth to this thirst-quencher (but pace yourself – they may have a tendency to sneak up on you)!


For the Blackberry Simple Syrup:

  • 12 oz. fresh blackberries
  • ½ cup sugar 

For the Blackberry Whiskey Lemonade:

  • 7.5 oz. whiskey
  • 7.5 oz. lemon juice
  • 1 large rosemary sprig
  • 6 oz. blackberry simple syrup


 For the Blackberry Simple Syrup:

  1. Put the blackberries and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Cook for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until blackberries have softened and you have a thick syrup.
  3. Strain syrup through a mesh sieve to separate any seeds or lumps from the syrup. You can discard the leftover pulp, although I like to freeze it in ice cube trays and pop a cube or two in smoothies.
  4. Let syrup cool on the counter for 20 minutes or so before you make the drinks.

For the Blackberry Whiskey Lemonade

  1. Combine all ingredients in a large shaker and add a handful or two of ice cubes. Depending on the size of your shaker, you may have to shake the drinks in two batches.
  2. Shake to combine and chill drinks.
  3. Pour over ice into glasses and serve.


Lavender Mint Mojito

lavender mojito

Image courtesy of Jillian Harris

Yes please. The floral elements of the lavender really add an aromatic dimension to this new-and-improved mojito mix. This recipe also calls for vodka (instead of the tradition liquor of choice, rum). Read about the inspiration for this beautiful blend on Jillian Harris’ blog.


  • 8-10 sprigs of lavender
  • 4 leaves of mint per each serving (16-20 mint leaves)
  • 4 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of warm water
  • Ice
  • 4 oz premium vodka (Grey Goose)
  • San Pellegrino or Perrier
  • Squeeze of lime


  1. In a mortar & pestle, lightly grind up the mint and lavender (keep a few for garnish)
  2. In a separate container with lid, add sugar, warm water, ground lavender & lime and shake vigorously to open up the flavors into the water and to emulsify and melt the sugar.
  3. Fill up four cups full of ice, pour one shot of vodka per glass, a squeeze of lime and then your lavender mixture.
  4. Top up with sparkling water, garnish and enjoy


Coconut Lime Sparkling Mocktail

coconut water

Image courtesy of Lily and Val

It’s always wise to have a mocktail option available for any guests who might be counting calories, avoiding alcohol, or planning to be the designated driver. But just because this one lacks liquor doesn’t mean it’s not just as delicious! Recipe originally posted on Lily and Val.


  • Fresh mint leaves (about 6-8)
  • Juice of 1/2 a lime
  • Honey
  • Ice
  • 1 can of La Croix Sparkling Water (Coconut)
  • Sliced lime  & mint sprig  (for garnish)


  1. In a glass, muddle the mint leaves, juice of half a lime, and honey (to taste).
  2. Fill the glass with ice. Top with La Croix Sparkling Coconut Water.
  3. Stir thoroughly.
  4. Garnish with a lime slice and mint sprig.