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Summer is one of my favorite times of the year. I love the longer hours of daylight, the green grass and foliage, my beautiful flowers out on my deck, going to the beach, wearing flip flops, sundresses, and everything enjoyable that comes with this season. We all work hard all week, we deserve to enjoy ourselves in our downtime, and the summer season offers many ways to do so.

Reasons to Celebrate

Summer brings different reasons to celebrate! There’s always something to look forward to doing every weekend. Graduation parties are big throughout June. Then Father’s Day comes around quickly, and 4th of July is always a popular day to celebrate with a barbecue or Beach Day down the Shore. Throw in some weddings and a couple of pool parties, and my calendar is booked solid.  Sometimes, just hanging out with a few intimate friends at home, can be a wonderful celebration, too.

 

Graduation Parties are great reasons to celebrate.
Father’s Day is a wonderful day to celebrate Dad!
4th of July is a great day to Celebrate our Independence!

Let’s Get Into The “Spirit”

In the “spirit” of summer celebrations, let’s focus on some summer “Spirits.” Enjoying cocktails during these celebrations is always fun when done responsibly.  My favorite adult beverage will always be a nice glass of wine, but I also enjoy trying new things. Beer and wine are typical staples at most parties. I’ve chosen some cocktails that look delicious and refreshing to add to the menu for your summer celebrations.

Support Our Local Agritourism

We have so many wonderful local farms and wineries right here in, and around, Harrison Township. Supporting our local Agritourism is a simple way to help our local farmers stay in business. It seems crazy to go to a Supermarket and buy California Strawberries or North Carolina Blueberries when this is the time of year that you can literally hand pick your own produce fresh from one of our local farmers’ markets and create something amazing.

There’s nothing sweeter than a fresh picked Jersey Strawberry!

With these fun Summer Celebration Cocktails that you can incorporate some fresh LOCAL produce. Rosie’s Farm Market is one of my favorites for fresh produce, right here in Mullica Hill.   You cannot get any fresher than a strawberry you handpicked off the bush yourself!  Mood’s Farm Market offers pick your own blueberries and strawberries.

Mullica Hill has wonderful local Wineries in our area for sangria and prosecco. William Heritage Winery in Mullica Hill just recently started producing a sparkling wine, like prosecco. We also have several new microbreweries nearby that you can get a nice summer brew for Dad on Father’s Day.

New to South Jersey is Mamma Bella Cello.  Made in Hammonton New Jersey, Mama Bella Cello is a line of delicious small batch, handmade cellos and seasonal liqueurs that uses locally grown blueberries for their blueberry cello. Also grown and made in Hammonton, are the award-winning wines from Plagido’s Winery.

Here are a couple of drinks to try your hand at making:

 

 

Blueberry and Strawberry Cocktails:

Blueberry Thyme Crush Cocktail

Ingredients:

1 handful fresh blueberries

1 sprig fresh thyme

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons sugar

2 ounces vodka or gin

Soda water

Ice

Directions:

  1. In a glass, combine blueberries, thyme, lemon juice and sugar.  Use a wooden spoon to smash all ingredients. Allow to sit for 15 minutes.
  2. Add the desired amount of vodka or gin. Stir well.
  3. Fill glass with ice, then top with soda water until full. Enjoy!

 

Berry Pink Lemonade Prosecco Punch:

Serves 6

Ingredients:

2 tbsp Basil, fresh

1 lemon

1 cup fresh raspberries

1 cup fresh strawberries

2 cups lemonade

1 bottle chilled prosecco

¼ cup Grenadine

1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Combine Prosecco, lemonade, grenadine and vanilla. Pour over ice.
  2. Stir in raspberries, strawberries, lemon slices and basil. Serve immediately.

 

 

Peach and Watermelon Cocktails

Frozen Peach Bellini Slush

Ingredients:

3 cups fresh or frozen peaches, diced

1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

1 cup ice cubes

3 cups Prosecco, Champagne or other sparkling wine

Directions:

  1. Add the peaches, sugar, and the ice cubes in a blender. Blend until smooth.
  2. Add wine and pulse until fully incorporated.
  3. Divide into glasses and top with a peach slice. Enjoy!

 

Watermelon Sangria

Ingredients:

4 cups cubed watermelon

1 750-lm bottle Moscato

1 cup rum

Juice of 4 limes

Zest of 2 limes

1 tbsp sugar

Lime slices and blueberries, for garnish

Directions:

In a blender, combine watermelon, Moscato, rum, lime juice and zest, and sugar. Blend until smooth. Refrigerate until chilled.

Garnish with limes slices and blueberries. Serve.

Delicious Lemon Cello Cocktail

Lemoncello Prosecco with Blueberries and Thyme

Ingredients:

750 ml Prosecco

1cup Mamma Bella limoncello, chilled

ice

Garnish:

Blueberries

Thyme

Lemon slices

Directions:

  1. Add the prosecco and limoncello liquor to a pitcher and stir.
  2. Place a handful of blueberries in a glass, top with ice and fill with the limoncello prosecco. Garnish with thyme and lemon slices.

For more information on locally handmade Mamma Bella Cellos go to www.mammabellacello.com or click here:

Click here for Mamma Bella Cello

 

 

Stay tuned on Facebook- We’ll be sharing our favorite libations each week!

I bet you’re thirsty now!  I hope you enjoy these recipes and are able support our local farmers in doing so!  Follow my Facebook page, I will be sharing new drink recipes each week for you to vote on your favorites. Then I will do a live reveal of each week’s winning recipe.

Have a wonderful Summer! ~ Nancy

 

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