Chill Out: 3 Cool Summer Cocktails You Can Whip Up Right At Home

UPDATE: Who's ready for a Sunday funday? Try any one of these tasty drinks to instantly add some fun to your weekend wrap-up. This story was originally published on May 16.
Our favorite way to wrap up a long week? A tall glass filled with a chilled, potent concoction — preferably one that actually tastes like summer. And when we're the ones pouring the drinks for our pals, we want to make sure to serve them something that's fully in the spirit of the season.
So, to master the summer cocktail, we tapped bartender Brad Witucki of Old Town Alexandria's Virtue Feed & Grain to give us the skinny on his favorite seasonal sips and show us how to concoct them at home. He let us in on one of the biggest warm-weather trends in mixology — beer cocktails. Dubbed "hoptails," these concoctions are light, fizzy, and refreshing, while still delivering layers of flavor. So, gather up some fresh citrus and a few bottled brews, and follow these recipes to make some seriously cool summer libations.
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First up: the cheekily named Hit De Flor. Don't let the sweet, peachy drink fool you, though. This Southern belle may look like iced tea, but it is definitely adults-only.


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You'll need:
1 oz. white rum
1/2 oz. Apry
1 oz. peach simple syrup
Peach bitters
3 oz. Lindemans Pêche


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Start with a tall glass filled with ice. To create the peach simple syrup, boil equal parts sugar, water, and peach nectar, then allow to cool.


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Measure rum and add to shaker.


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Add bitters.


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Add Apry and peach simple syrup, and shake with ice.


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Strain into a tall glass.


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Top with Lindemans Pêche beer and serve.


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Next on the menu: Alexandria's Finest. This tart, lemony "hoptail" is a riff on a classic English shandy — and uses local Alexandria-brewed beer from Port City.


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You'll need:
1 oz. gin
1 oz. lemon shrub
Lemon bitters
3 oz. Port City Optimal Wit
Fresh lemon


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Who doesn't love a cocktail with local flavor?


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First, you'll need to make the lemon shrub, which is a variation on simple syrup. Heat equal parts sugar and water in a saucepan and stir until sugar dissolves. Add fresh lemon slices and simmer. Let cool; strain and add Champagne vinegar to taste. Refrigerate any leftover shrub.


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Combine the gin, lemon shrub syrup, and bitters in a shaker.


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Shake with ice.


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Strain into a rocks glass.


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Top with Port City beer.


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Garnish with lemon peel and serve.


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The final drink, creatively named It Reminds Me of Tristan and Isolde, will make you look like a creative genius behind the bar.

The beer is infused with honeysuckle, a clever allusion to the 12th-century legend about star-crossed lovers and the honeysuckle that grew from their graves.


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You'll need:
1 1/2 oz. American whiskey
1 oz. orange-honey syrup
2 drops orange flower water
Orange bitters
2 1/2 oz. Stegmaier Honeysuckle Ale
Fresh orange


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Start with a rocks glass filled with crushed ice. To make the orange-honey simple syrup, mix equal parts sugar and water and heat until sugar is dissolved. Mix in equal parts orange juice and orange blossom honey while heating until thoroughly combined. Allow to cool before using.


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Measure whiskey and add to mixing glass.


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Add orange bitters.


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Add orange flower water and orange-honey syrup.


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Add the honeysuckle ale.


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Add ice and stir well.


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Double strain the mixture into a rocks glass.


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Garnish with orange peel. (Flaming optional!)


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