2016 CKH Summer Drink Guide with Celebrity Bartender Steve Calabro

Last year’s Summer Drink Guide was so popular, we decided to do again this year with new drinks! Once again, we reached out to celebrity bartender, Steve Calabro, to provide us a few unique drink recipes to help you relax this Summer. We think you’ll agree that he did another outstanding job!

photo of Steve Calabro for the 2016 Summer Drink Guide

Celebrity Bartender Steve Calabro

Steve Calabro has over 25 years of experience as a mixologist. He is the best Spirits educator in the business. There really isn’t anything about bars and drinks that he does not know. He has been featured in multiple magazines from the Hollywood Reporter to Maxim, even The Robb Report did a story on his $100 margarita. His Bartending Bootcamp is the most watched bartending series on YouTube worldwide with over 3 MILLION views! Recently, Steve started a new website called The Perfect Gentleman. There’s an accompanying Facebook page if you want to learn more about Steve, his drink recipes or his philosophy of being a gentleman. Check it out!


2016 Summer Drink Guide

It’s Summer again! Here in California, we get this kind of weather year round, but for others, it’s a special occasion. To celebrate the weather turning to he better, we have neighborhood BBQs and pool parties. We try to squeeze as much fun in as is humanly possible. And the best way to do that is with other people (sorry introverts). The theme Steve came up for this year’s guide is to curate some of the best cocktails from holidays passed, always with an eye towards warm weather drinks. So, we’ll be avoiding the coffee drinks, etc. Impress your guests with your newfound skill as a bartender by incorporating some or all of these drinks.

We have 5 new cocktails for you in 5 new videos. But in true bartender form, each has a story to tell…

Fresh Berry Lemonade

Why do we equate sour drinks with thirst quenching? Science! In the 1960s, a bunch of research scientists out of Japan asked that very question. Sour drinks stimulate salivation. When we become dehydrated on a hot day, our bodies warn us that we need liquid through dry mouth. Acidic drinks (like lemonade) wet the mouth and give the impression of hydration even after your drink is finished!

American settlers crossing the country in their covered wagons used to cool off with vinegar water. We can do better than that!

Coconut Margarita

This recipe calls for both coconut milk and coconut water. There’s a difference! Coconut water is the liquid found in the middle of this fruit (Yes, it’s a fruit, not a nut). Coconut milk comes from taking the white flesh of the coconut, grating it and soaking it in water. The coconut cream rises to the top and can be skimmed off. The remaining liquid is then squeezed through a cheese cloth to extract a white liquid that is coconut milk. And yes, it’s a vegan friendly milk.

Coconut water has the same electrolyte balance found in isotonic drinks, which is useful for rehydration on a hot Summer day!

Irish Buck

Here’s a little history lesson for the Buck. The name is said to originate from a London social club founded in 1919 called The Buck’s Club. That drink, however, has more in common with a Mimosa than an Irish Buck. Around 1890, here in America, a much more similar drink was popular called the Horse’s Neck With A Stick. It’s a ginger ale with a very long strip of lemon peel and slug of whiskey. These drinks were quite popular in the 1960s in British Navy wardrooms. So much so, Ian Fleming added it to his novel Octopussy. It is alleged that Fleming was quite partial to this drink himself!

Nacional Cocktail

This cocktail is named after the Hotel Nacional de Cuba, which was one of the premiere luxury hotels prior to the rise of Castro. Everyone from movie stars to mobsters to famous writers to star athletes flocked to this destination. This is the signature drink of the hotel. So, if you’re in the mood to follow in the steps of Marlon Brando, Mickey Mantle, Ernest Hemingway or Meyer Lansky, this cool, refreshing drink is for you!

Paloma Tequila Cocktail

Fun Fact: In Mexico, Paloma cocktails are more popular than margaritas. Why? Because the grapefruit flavor mixes perfectly with tequila, much better than lime juice. No one is sure where this drink came from. There are several theories surrounding it. Despite it’s huge popularity south of the border, the Paloma hasn’t caught on up in the States. If you serve this drink, you might be the hero of the party!

Have a great Summer! You really can’t go wrong with any of these drinks. When you give them a try, please share your stories on our Facebook page. Even better! Take some pictures from your next event with the drinks and send them in. If we get enough of them, maybe we’ll create an album for everyone to see.