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Mix Up Your Summer Drink Menu

There is no question that as the temperature goes up, so do beverage sales, as customers look for ways to beat the heat. This summer, try mixing up your drink offerings with these creative twists that are not only easy to implement, but also help to drive up profits!


Get Bubbly

Many bartenders are experimenting with carbonation and adding some fizz to old stand by cocktails. Many trendy night spots are serving bubbly vodka cranberry, old fashioned and martinis. Try utilizing this trend as a buy up option to drive your profit. “Would you like to make that an effervescent cocktail for only $1 more?"


Crafty Beer Cocktails

The craft beer industry has grown with huge popularity over the past several years and shows no signs of backing off. With that, some cool spin-off ideas have burst forth on the beverage scene utilizing beer in mixed drinks. Micheladas are a new spicy beer cocktail featuring beer, hot sauce, lime juice and tequila. Black Velvet is a new beer cocktail where dark stout beer and champagne are mixed to give a unique flavor profile and presentation utilizing two ingredients that most bars have in inventory already. Margarona is a frozen margarita with a 7oz Corona added. It gives a different flavor to the margarita and offers a WOW presentation.


Is it a Drink or an Appetizer?

Now more than ever we are seeing crazy cocktail garnishes being used to grow beverage sales. Large skewers of olives, cucumbers, lemons, oranges, cherries, cocktail shrimp, pickles, pearled onions, and slipper lobster tails are being served in some of the most unique drinks today. Think outside the box on this and allow your bartender and your chef to collaborate on a few creations. Post these masterpieces on your Facebook and Instagram for the entire world to see!


Shiny and New!

Moonshine has always been popular in the South, but now “shine” is going nationwide. We are seeing moonshine showing up on bar, dessert and even dinner menus everywhere, so of course it’s time to get creative with the white lightning whiskey and pull out the mason jars. Try serving moonshine mixed with fruit tea for a “porch sitting sipper,” soak fruit in shine overnight to add a quick punch, or experiment with moonshine mixed with Bloody Mary Mix for a “Shiny Mary."  Incorporate moonshine into your dinner menu as an alternative to bourbon for BBQ sauces and glazes. And don’t forget dessert! Incorporate it into caramel, homemade marshmallows, jams and cobblers. Or, simply make a batch of vanilla with it and use it in everything!

Need some recipe inspiration? Here is our take on a Southern “front porch sipper.”

Saturday Evening Lemonade


1.25 oz moonshine

8 oz lemonade

1 orange slice

3 mint leaves

3 cherries marinated overnight in moonshine



In a large glass, muddle together the orange slice and 2 mint leaves.

Fill glass ¾ full with crushed ice

Poor moonshine over ice

Add lemonade to mixture

Garnish with 3 marinated cherries and remaining mint leaf

Serve in a mason jar – of course!


Contributed By:

Ron Warner
VP of Sales
Performance Foodservice - Nashville