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Best Spring Cocktail Trends

We've got everything you need to shake up your home bar for the season, from the hottest flavours – think vibrant floral and bright botanicals – to cool cocktail styles like frozen slushies, plus expert tips for mixing and garnishing your drinks like a pro.


Fresh Twists on Citrus

For zesty cocktails, start with citrus-infused spirits to build flavour, then go big with garnishes, and layer on flavour with lemon grass and lime leaves, charred fruit slices and artful twists. 

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Vodka-Spiked Kombucha

Make an impressive cocktail with citrus-flavoured vodka and Kombucha.

Pour 1 to 1½ oz vodka or citrus-flavoured vodka and ½ oz lemon juice into an ice-filled collins glass. Top with 1½ oz soda water then 4½ oz kombucha. Add 2 tsp honey syrup and 1 or 2 dashes bitters. Gently stir to mix and chill. Taste and add more honey syrup, if you like. Make a vegetable ribbon garnish by using a Y-shaped peeler to pull long, thin strips from carrots, cucumber, rhubarb and celery. 

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Margarita with Charred Citrus

Balance the zingy lime in this tried-and-true tequila favourite with a chili salt rimmer and caramelized grapefruit wedge.

Place orange or grapefruit wedges in a dry non-stick pan and heat over medium-high just until charred. Mix kosher salt and a pinch of cayenne on a small plate. Rub lime wedge around rim of a chilled margarita glass and rim outside edge with salt mixture. Fill glass with ice. Pour 1½ oz tequila, 1 oz orange liqueur, 1 oz lime juice and ½ oz simple syrup or agave syrup into ice-filled cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously, then strain into prepared glass. Garnish with a charred grapefruit wedge or a fresh lime wedge.

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Coconut, Lime & Lemongrass Smash

Mixing citrus notes and tropical ingredients lends remarkable flavours to a vodka-based cocktail.

Pour 2¼ cups coconut water, 1½ cups vodka, ½ cup fresh lime juice and ½ cup lemongrass and makrut lime syrup in a pitcher. (Makes 6 cocktails.) For each drink, measure out ⅓ cup of mixture, and shake over ice. Strain into a collins glass and garnish with lime leaf.

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Bee's Knees

Boost zingy flavours in a classic cocktail with the addition of citrus-forward Tanqueray Rangpur Gin.

Simply pour 2 oz gin, ¾ oz honey syrup and ¾ oz lemon juice into a cocktail shaker. Add ice and shake until chilled. Double strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with a lemon and/or lime twist.



Flower Power

Floral flavours are in full bloom and one of this year’s hottest trends. You’ll find them in gin and vodka, adding complexity with earthy, herbaceous notes.

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Lavender Pink Lady

This lavender twist on a classic plays up gin's floral fragrance.

Add 1 ¾ oz gin, ¾ oz lemon juice, ¼ oz apple brandy, 2 tsp grenadine syrup and 1 fresh egg white (preferably pasteurized) to cocktail shaker. Dry shake by sealing and vigorously shaking without ice until very frothy. Add 1 tsp dried lavender buds and a handful ice. Shake until chilled. Fine strain into chilled coupe glass. Garnish with lavender sprig.



From Plant to Glass

Popping up in everything from gin to ready-to-drink beverages, botanicals add freshness and complexity to your glass, courtesy of Mother Nature.

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Bramble & Sonic

Pour 2 oz Bombay Bramble into a large ice-filled wine glass. Top with 4 oz club soda and 2 oz tonic water. For garnishes, riff off of gin's botanicals by using orange slices, star anise and fresh fennel shavings. Complement those flavours with fresh cucumber.



Savvy Swaps

Give classic cocktails an easy makeover by trading your favourite spirit for something new and unexpected. Try vodka in a Tequila Sunrise or rum in a Mojito instead of tequila; switch tequila with gin in a Margarita, and infuse your Cosmopolitan with a bright, botanical character by making it with gin instead of vodka. 

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Ketel Sunrise

Add 1 ½ oz Ketel One Peach and Orange Blossom, 4 oz peach nectar and 1 oz freshly squeezed orange juice to highball or tall footed glass filled with ice. Stir. Top with 1 oz soda. Hold a bar spoon pressing to the inside edge of the glass. Slowly pour ½ oz grenadine syrup into glass over the back of spoon letting it sink to the bottom. Garnish with orange wheel and edible flower. Serve with a straw.


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Flavoured-Rum Tom Collins

Rum infused with sweet apple flavour updates a favourite that dates back to 1876.

Swap in a flavoured rum, like Captain Morgan Sliced Apple Spiced Rum, instead of gin in this highball favourite. Add an extra splash of soda, and garnish with pineapple leaves and dehydrated orange wheels.

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Tequila Mojito

Using tequila in place of the usual white rum adds new and complex flavours to a mojito.

Muddle ¾ oz simple syrup with 6 mint leaves in a highball glass. Add 2 oz tequila and ¾ oz lime juice. Fill glass with ice. Top with 4 to 5 oz club soda. Garnish with mint sprig.

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Spiced Rum Old-Fashioned

For a spicy spin on this classic, use Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum instead of whisky.

Taste and add a couple more dashes of bitters and garnish with an orange twist and edible flower.

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Whisky Paloma

Whisky and grapefruit are an unexpectedly good match. Experiment with whisky instead of tequila in a traditional Paloma.

Mix 1 tsp (5 mL) agave syrup with 1 tsp (5 mL) warm water for an agave simple syrup. Rub a lime wedge around half of outer rim of a tall glass. Turn in kosher salt. Add ice. Pour in 2 oz Canadian whisky, 4 oz grapefruit juice, 2 oz soda water, ½ lime juice and 2 tsp (10 mL) agave simple syrup. Garnish with a grapefruit twist.



Make a Splash

Kick up the flavours in traditional sippers with the addition of uniquely flavoured mixes.

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Beerita

Give your favourite brew a zippy twist by combining it with tequila and Margarita mix.

Start by blending equal parts frozen limeade concentrate and tequila; add 1 oz to a salt-rimmed rocks glass of beer.

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Cucumber & Cider Smash

Crisp apple cider brings a touch of tartness to a simple smash cocktail.

Pour ½ oz simple syrup into a rocks glass. If cider is sweet you may want to reduce amount of syrup. Add 6 mint leaves and 3 cucumber slices. Using a muddler or the back of a wooden spoon, muddle a few times, extracting flavour and rubbing ingredients around interior of the glass. Add ½ oz lime juice. Fill with ice. Slowly add 6 oz chilled dry cider, stirring as you add. Garnish with cucumber wheel or apple slices.

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Watermelon Mint Margarita

Tequila and watermelon come together nicely in this fresh take on a classic.

Pour 1 ½ oz Casamigos Blanco Tequila and 2 oz Simply Cocktails Watermelon Mint Lime Mixer into a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Add 2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters. Shake vigorously until chilled. Strain into a rocks glass. Garnish with mint sprig and watermelon slices. 



Slush Fun

Frozen drinks offer a taste of summer any time of year. Crafted with wine or spirits, the newest varieties for grown-ups are less sweet and more sophisticated with balanced flavours.

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White Claw Slushy

Take this flavoured seltzer to the next level by creating a peach melba dessert-inspired sipper.

Blend a can of White Claw, a handful of frozen peaches and raspberries, 1 oz of a Amaretto and ice. Divide between 2 to 3 rocks glasses.

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White Sangria Slushie

Blend all the best parts of sangria — wine, spirits and fruit — into a delightful frozen sipper.

Pour 1 cup dry white wine, 1½ oz brandy, 1½ oz simple syrup and ¾ oz lemon juice into an airtight container. Freeze at least 6 hours and up to 3 days. (It will freeze, but not completely, so you’ll still be able to spoon it out.) Place drink mixture and 1 cup frozen peach slices in blender. Blend until smooth. Divide between 2 chilled glasses using a spoon. Garnish with mint sprigs, and serve with straws or long spoons. Add skewer of peach slices. 



Frothy and Fluffy Cocktails

A thin layer of foamy bubbles sitting on top of a cocktail adds a touch of whimsy. Aerating ingredients with a vigorous shake or a quick whisk helps highlight their aromatics.

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Spicy Pineapple & Tequila

Pineapple juice, when given a hard dry (without ice) shake, foams beautifully and holds its shape well.

Pinch lime wedge around rim of a tall glass. Place Tajin spice on a small plate. Turn outer rim in spice mix. Pour 2 oz tequila, 4 oz pineapple juice, 3/4 oz lime juice and 3/4 oz simple syrup into a cocktail shaker. Dry shake by sealing and vigorously shaking without ice. Add ice. Shake until chilled and very frothy. Pour into prepared glass filled with ice. Garnish with pineapple wedge and leaves.

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Guinness Float

Create a grownup version of this fluffy favourite by using beer in place of pop.

Scoop 1 to 2 scoops vanilla ice cream into a parfait or sturdy cocktail glass. Tilt the glass slightly and slowly pour 4 to 6 oz Guinness along the inside. Garnish with a cocktail cherry.

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Whisky Sour

The OG frothy cocktail can always benefit from a twist. Try incorporating your favourite flavoured whisky for something new.

Pour 2 oz Canadian whisky or flavoured whisky, ¾ oz lemon juice, ¾ oz honey syrup or simple syrup and 1 egg white into a cocktail shaker. Fill with ice. Shake sharply and strain into a coupe glass. Add a few dashes bitters to the frothy top. Run a skewer through dashes, creating a design. Garnish with skewered honeycomb, if you like.



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