Give spirits a lift


Spring is fleeting, the temperature is climbing toward summer and so is our thirst for cooler, more effervescent cocktails. Here are some recipes, a mix of trendy and traditional, for refreshing libations to stir your spirits. Each recipe makes one drink.

A distilled liquor called cachaca (pronounced "ka-sha-sa") is the base of Brazil's national cocktail, the caipirinha.

Make it:

1 lime

Dash simple syrup

1 1/4 ounces cachaca

Dash soda water

Slice the lime into eighths and muddle with simple syrup. Add ice, then cachaca, and top with a dash of soda water. Garnish with the lime you used.

This uses the new acai berry-infused Veev liqueur.

Make it:

1 1/4 ounces of Veev acai liqueur

1 1/4 ounces of Apple Pucker schnapps

1 ounce of sweet and sour

Dash of blue Curacao

Maraschino cherry

Mint sprig

Rim half the glass with sugar. Shake ingredients with ice, strain into a martini glass and add cherry and mint.

"When you dress it properly and put it out on the bar, people flock to it," said a 2009 New York Times story on this traditional British drink.

Make it:

2 ounces Pimm's No. 1 Cup

1/4 ounce fresh-squeezed lemon juice

4 1/4-inch-thick cucumber slices

3 lemon wheels

1 orange wheel

1/4 Granny Smith apple, cut into chunks

6 thin slices of Bosc pear

6 ounces ginger ale

Place Pimm's No. 1 Cup, lemon juice and all of the fruit into a 16-ounce glass. Add ice to fill and ginger ale, and stir lightly. Garnish with a cucumber slice and a mint sprig.

Make it:

2 ounces Bacardi O orange-flavored rum

1 ounce Patron Citronge

3/4 ounce orange juice

1/4 ounce grenadine

Shake ingredients over ice and strain into a martini glass.

This gin-and-champagne drink dates to the World War I French flying ace Raoul Lufbery.

Make it:

1 1/2 ounces of gin

2 teaspoons of superfine sugar

1 1/2 ounces of lemon juice

4 ounces of chilled champagne

1 orange slice

1 maraschino cherry

In a shaker half-filled with ice cubes, combine gin, sugar and lemon juice. Shake well. Pour into a Collins glass and top with the champagne. Stir well and garnish with orange slice and the cherry.

This was created by Lucy Brennan, named one of the nation's top five mixologists by Food & Wine in 2006.

Make it:

1 ounce Absolut Vanilla Vodka

1 ounce Cruzan Pineapple Rum

1 ounce fresh lemon and lime juice

1 ounce simple syrup

Two slices jalapeno pepper.

Shake and strain into a chilled martini glass. Garnish with another small slice of jalapeno.