While there’s nothing wrong with garnishing your non-alcoholic cocktail with a no-fuss sprig of mint or hunk of lime, sometimes it can be enjoyable to add a little extra flair to your drink. To help you savour the last days of summer, we’re rounding up some of our favourite cocktail garnishes inspired by the colours and flavours of the season.
A cucumber ribbon is a playful garnish that makes a lovely finish for cocktails like this Sobrii Spritz. To make a ribbon, simply use a vegetable peeler to slice off the first green layer of cucumber skin. Continue shaving off long strips of cucumber in the same spot. It might take a little practice, but the goal is to create strips that are thin and have a little bit of green peel on both sides. You can then gently curl one of the strips back and forth and pierce it through the centre with a cocktail pick to hold the shape in place.
A fruit wedge is a whimsical garnish that allows you to highlight your favourite fresh summer produce. All you need to do is slice your fruit of choice into a wedge shape and then cut an additional slit in the centre to help it balance on the edge of your glass. Garnish the Sobrii Melon Breeze with a watermelon wedge or add a pineapple wedge to this Lavendar Raspberry cocktail.
A citrus twist is a classic cocktail garnish that’s easier than it looks to make. Use a sharp, paring knife to slice off a round of citrus and then cut around the circumference of its peel, aiming to pick up as little of the white pith underneath the skin as possible. You can also use a vegetable peeler to remove a strip of citrus skin, which will result in a wider, less uniform twist. Twirl the peel into a corkscrew shape, or wrap it around your finger or a straw to help guide the pattern. Try making a lemon citrus garnish for the Sunrise with Guava or complete the Lo-Groni with a twist of orange.
Edible flowers make for an elegant, summery cocktail garnish. If you have trouble finding fresh flowers, you can also experiment with using dried flowers like chamomile or rose, which can often be found in the tea or baking aisles at the grocery store. Add some dried rose petals to the Sobrii Rose Collins. Or try using fruit, such as an apple or peach, to make a faux flower rosette. Use a vegetable peeler to strip off a long ribbon of fruit skin. Then, roll up the peel and use a skewer to hold the shape in place. For example, you could complete this Peach 0-Spritz with a pretty peach rosette.
Infused Ice Cubes
Adding ingredients to your ice cubes is another simple way to add a little extra oomph to your drink presentation. Combine some chopped mint leaves and lemon-lime or grapefruit soda together and then freeze the mixture in ice trays for a fun addition to the Hound cocktail. You can also try cutting up any favourite summer fruit into tiny pieces. Divide it up into an ice tray, top the tray with water, and freeze the mixture. For example, strawberry-infused ice cubes would be a delicious addition to this Strawberry Jalapeno 0-Mule.