Summer is just about ready to unleash its full power and if you haven’t been burnt by a seatbelt buckle yet this month, you probably don’t own a car. Random high school acquaintances with air con are suddenly your best friend and your ‘at home’ attire consists of a pair of board shorts and nothing else. The only antidote? Heading out to our fave Brisbane cocktail bars for an afternoon of the coolest, most tropical, Queensland weather worthy cocktails. You know, the ones that make you go ‘aaaahhhhhhh.’
Lychee Mojito | Riverbar | CBD
If we could shake up summer and put it in a glass, we’re pretty sure it would taste just like Riverbar’s concoction of Havana Club, lime, apple, lychee, mint and soda. Bonus points have to go to the totally sweet views – you might just forget that you ever felt steamy in the first place.
Lawrence of Arabia | Dutch Courage | Fortitude Valley
You may need a touch of courage to brave the Brisbane heat, but Dutch Courage’s Lawrence of Arabia concoction is well worth it. With gin, Aperol, orange, passionfruit and citrus, it’s basically summer in a highball glass.
Sometimes, you just can’t beat the classics, and when they come with riverside sunset views, why would you even want to? Especially when you can pair an Aperol Spritz with freshly shucked oysters at the Custom’s House pop-up bar from Wednesday to Sunday.
Late Bloomer | The End | West End
Yep, spring was a bit of a late bloomer this year (jumpers in October? WTF Mother Nature?), but The End is making up for lost time with this concoction of gin, quandong, orange blossom, lime and prosecco.
El Luchador | Canvas | Woolloongabba
We’re gonna let the folks at Canvas explain mix of tequila, apple, mandarin, pomegranate and agave, as they paint the picture so well: “This is a Mexican who loves the beach but ain’t afraid to throw a quick jab if you steal his spot in the sun.”
Damn those Hips | Friday’s | CBD
You could just about imagine yourself on holidays on a tropical island if you found yourself on Friday’s riverside balcony, cocktail in hand and blue skies overhead. The fruity Damn those Hips combines passionfruit vodka, muddled lemon, passionfruit and cranberry juice for a sip that will cool you down quicker than any river breeze.
Rosey Cheeks | Up on Constance | Fortitude Valley
The rising temperature may leave you a bit hot and flustered, but a Rosey Cheeks cocktail served high above the Valley skyline will truly bring about the right kind of colour. With Ketel One Citroen Vodka, sugar syrup, Aphrodite bitters and rosemary, we sure will be accepting this kind of rose.
Sun is Shining | Mr & Mrs Gs | CBD
Don’t blame it on the sunshine, nor the Sun is Shining cocktail at this riverside spot. Think gin, Cointreau, mandarin, lemon & thyme syrup topped off with coffee syrup for the summer wake up call you really need. In a sharing mood? The Andy’s Garden Punch, with Tanqueray gin, Lillet, elderflower liquer, lemon thyme syrup, mint, cucumber and limes is a garden party that we can get around.
Ra, the Egyptian Sun God | Soleil | South Bank
It’d be a (sun)burn not to include Soleil’s tribute to the Egyptian Sun God, especially since it’s a damn good tribute: rum, creme de cassis, guava, apple, lime, spicy syrup and berries. We’re converted.
Bikini Bottom | Byblos | Hamilton
It’s not just your summer uniform of choice or the place that Spongebob calls home, Bikini Bottom is also a deliciously heat-quenching cocktail served up by Byblos. A mix of Chambord, Aperol, lemon, pineapple jam, apple and saline, it’s sure to transport you straight to beach – we just can’t guarantee you’ll get a tan.
And everybody on three? 1, 2, 3, ahhhhhhhhhh…
Words by Moira Kennedy