patio party + summer cocktail recipes

This past weekend was quite possibly the most beautiful few days we’ve had all “Spring” here in DC. I hosted a patio party out back complete with summer cocktail tastings.

With Memorial Day weekend just a few days away, I thought it could not be a better time to try out some new recipes for this upcoming summer.

 I set up my outdoor patio table with a variety of cocktail glasses, mini San Pellegrinos, colorful paper straws and cocktail napkins, and yes – my new favorite tablecloth from Cynthia Rowley.

{Tablecloth // Blue Mason Jar // Paper Straws // Serving Tray (similar here) // Ice Bucket (similar here) // Cocktail Glasses // Patio Furniture}

To host a patio party – you also need 3 more things; fresh flowers (tis the season for peonies!), cooperating weather and a handful of recipes (bright colors are also strongly encouraged).

Fruit Infused Water


  • sparkling or regular water
  • fresh mint leaves
  • sliced cucumbers
  • strawberries
  • limes

Tips: I made these the night prior in large mason jars that I kept cold in the fridge. They are quite refreshing and help you and your guests stay hydrated for an afternoon of cocktail tasting. Serve with a colorful straw and refill as needed.

Watermelon-Orange Margaritas


  • 1 cup of fresh cubed watermelon
  • 1.5 ounces of your tequila of choice (I chose Patron)
  • freshly squeezed lime juice (1.5 limes)
  • splash of San Pellegrino Orange soda (to taste)
  • splash of lemon-lime soda water (to taste)
  • spoonful of sugar
  • rainbow colored sugar (for the rim a la Dean & Deluca)
  • sliced limes (for garnish)

Tips: If you’re hosting a party with a variety of drinks, buy airplane bottles of your favorite liquors. They are perfect for tastings and help you measure out cocktails appropriately. Also, you can splurge a little more by doing so (a la Patron) and not buy an entire bottle.

Cucumber Melon Mint Sangria

Ingredients (pitcher-sized):

  • 1 bottle of sauvignon blanc or pinot grigio
  • 1.5 large cucumbers (sliced)
  • 12 mint leaves
  • sliced limes
  • 2 cups of cubed honey melon
  • 1 cup of lemon-lime soda water
  • 4 spoonfuls of sugar (or more, to taste)

Tips: Make ahead of time and store in the fridge to let the wine soak up the fruits and veggies. Sangria is all about taste so use the recipe above and mix to your liking. Also, this is not your traditional sangria – it’s quite refreshing and even those that do not normally enjoy white wine loved this one! You can also make this sans alcohol and use soda or sparkling water instead.

Adult Lemonade


  • freshly squeeze lemons (1.5 or so for each)
  • 2 spoonfuls of sugar
  • 1.5 ounces of vodka
  • splash of lemon San Pellegrino soda
  • sliced lemons (to garnish)

Tips: This is a twist on homemade lemonade and also is “to taste”. It’s up to you how many Mary Poppins you add (i.e. spoonfuls of sugar). Also, be sure to chill your vodka ahead of time.

 Now I know that the official day of summer is not until June – but who’s waiting until then to celebrate? Summer begins this weekend if you ask me!

So go out and host & toast!


One Response to patio party + summer cocktail recipes

  1. Jillian says:

    I love this! Can’t wait for the Spark Party 🙂

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