Here we compiled a list of some classic southern cocktails along with some cocktails that are making a comeback that we think you might be interested in having at your next event! Whether you’re looking for something summer-related, or year-round we put together a list of drinks, a little history, ingredients, links to amazing recipes, when to serve and what season they go best with! These drinks are great for any event and for both women and men in mind!
The old fashioned is a classic among gods, developed during the 19th century and the name was first used at the Pendennis Club, a gentleman’s club founded in 1881 in Louisville, Kentucky. It is mixed with a dissolved sugar cube, bitters, dash of water, large ice cube, whiskey, garnished with an orange twist and cocktail cherry. This drink is usually served before dinner. Year-round.
The Carolina Peach Sangria is deliciously comprised of peaches, raspberries and every girl’s favorite- rose. Sangrias are wonderful because you can choose red or white wine and add whatever fruits or flowers you’d like! Whether it’s a lavender and lemon, apple and cinnamon, mixed berry, etc! It was developed in Spain but this refreshing drink will keep all the ladies cool-and buzzed! This drink is usually served anytime. Year-round for sangrias, spring/summer for the Carolina Peach Sangria.
This cocktail is a bourbon-based classic of the South! It is also strongly associated with the Kentucky Derby. In 1803 it was referenced that Virginians even drank it every morning! Typically it’s four main ingredients are muddled mint, sugar and water, filled with cracked ice, add Bourbon and stir well until it is frosted, then garnished with a mint sprig. So if you’re looking for something refreshing, minty, and fancy cocktail- this is your best bet! This drink is usually served anytime. Spring/summer.
This passion fruit-colored cocktail derives from New Orleans speakeasy owner, Pat O’Brien in the 1940’s. It is anything but subtle and one you will never forget! The hurricane typically is a sweet cocktail made with dark rum, white rum, half part over proofed rum, passion fruit syrup and lemon juice where the ingredients are shaken and poured into the glass served over ice. If you’re looking to kick your party up a notch- give one of these New Orlean classics a-go! This drink is usually served during receptions or after dinner. Year-round.
Although originally stemming from England, the elderflower has slowly been making its way into the states and we are an advocate for this drink! Elderflower is known to have mild floral honey notes with a fruity taste. All the Sparkling Elderflower Lemonade is made of is elderflower liqueur, lemonade, vodka, splash of club soda on ice with a lemon wheel and sprig of mint for garnish. This drink is usually served before dinner. Spring/summer.
When bourbon, strawberry and iced tea collide it’s like floating on clouds. Refreshing, cool and sweet- just what everyone wants on a hot party day. Iced tea is a classic staple of a popular Southern drink, ubiquitous in grocery stores, restaurants, vending machines, etc. However, throw in some muddled strawberries, lemon juice, Bourbon, garnish with a mint sprig and skewered blueberries and strawberries and you have yourself a REAL party! This drink is usually served anytime. Spring/summer.
The Alabama Slammer, also known as the Southern Slammer, made it’s fine debut in Playboy Bartender’s Guide by Thomas Mario in 1971. This Southern drink is popular among college crowds as early as the 1980’s- but make no mistake, if you want to bring your party up a notch and remind the crowd of the good ol’ days, this is a great go-to! The Alabama Slammer is part Southern Comfort, sloe gin, amaretto, and lemon juice. This drink is served after dinner. Year-round.
Although born in New York City, this drink has slowly made it’s way back into popularity over the last few years. Styled in a copper mug, it gives way to the rustic, southern decorum. It is both popular amongst guys and girls and is mixed with vodka, lime juice, gingerbeer and mint. Refreshing, ginger and minty- this drink is one of our favorites! This drink is served anytime. Year-round.
In 1850 Sewell T. Taylor began importing a brand of cognac called Sazerac de Forge et Fils but the actual cocktail was created by coffee house owners and apothecaries. Now, it is the official cocktail of New Orleans! This stiff and substantial cocktail served in a chilled old-fashioned glass with absinthe, crushed ice, sugar cube, bitters and a lemon peel for garnish. This drink is served after dinner. Year-round.
One of the earliest mentions of the Smash is mentioned in 1862 and very similar to that of a julep, a class southern drink. We stumbled upon this recipe for the Grilled Peach Bourbon Smash and all we have to say is WOW! A perfect drink for a warm summer night- with the aroma of peaches and honey. This cocktail is made up of a full grilled peach, half a lemon, sugar, simple syrup, bourbon, ice, ginger ale, and garnished with mint leaves. This drink is served after dinner. Spring/summer/fall.
And there you have it! Our complete list of summer, southern-styled cocktails you need at your next event! So if you’re looking for drinks to wow-them, here are a few we have in mind! And always, have fun and drink responsibly!