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Memorial Day Cocktail Recipes to Kick Off the Summer Season

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Memorial Day is quickly approaching and now it’s the time for all businesses in the hospitality industry to consider creating special offers for the occasion. This year, Memorial Day will be observed on the 27th of May, which means there is still time to plan something special. 

Introducing unique cocktail drinks is a great way to honor a certain day without changing up your whole menu. It’s nice to have food options too, but since this could require a lot more planning, you can stick to custom drinks. A mixologist can create a few for your bar or restaurant, or you could get inspired by our Memorial Day cocktail recipes. 

No matter which approach you will choose, make sure you are prepared. Customers appreciate special offers, seeing new drinks in a beverage menu, and being part of a celebration. If you think this is a great idea, we suggest you dive deep into these cool recipes we have curated for you!

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10 Popular Memorial Day Cocktail Recipes to Make

Memorial Day is typically celebrated during the first weekend with warmer weather. This calls for big-batch cocktails, frozen beverages, and a lot of simple and refreshing cocktail drinks. No matter where your restaurant or bar is located, it’s best to have some cool, refreshing cocktails on the list. 

To help you curate your menu for this May, we have gathered fun and delicious Memorial Day cocktail recipes to make. Don’t be afraid to add your own twist to the drinks and use creative Memorial Day-inspired names for them!

Key Takeaway: Memorial Day weekend usually is the first one with summery hot weather, so it’s time to bring out the refreshing drinks. Try these Memorial Day cocktail recipes and add a pinch of your creativity, too. Focusing on refreshing and delicious drinks is key when the weather is getting warmer outside!

1. Tom Collins

A true classic in the world of cocktails, Tom Collins is a great swap for everyone’s favorite gin and tonic. This simple, yet delicious and refreshing cocktail is typically mixed up straight into the glass. All you need is great gin with lemon juice, simple syrup, and of course, club soda. You can garnish it with a simple lemon slice or twist, or come up with a more unexpected garnish. 

2. Strawberry Daiquiri

Who wouldn’t love a frozen cocktail for the first hot weekend? Forget about artificial Strawberry Daiquiri mixes and make the best fresh cocktail for your guests! Research the best rum for daiquiris, get fresh strawberries, simple syrup, and lime juice. You are going to need loots of ice, too! The easiest way to finish up any Memorial Day cocktail recipes would be to use your imagination and stay away from the expected cocktail garnishes

3. Lynchburg Lemonade

Lemonade is always a great drink to have, especially if it’s a spiked one! That’s we why suggest you make the Lynchburg Lemonade for your restaurant or bar guests this Memorial Day. The cocktail is named after Tennessee’s home of Jack Daniel’s distillery and combines whiskey with triple sec, lemon juice, simple syrup, and lemon-lime soda. It’s super refreshing and easy to make, and most importantly, will make your customers crave more of this deliciousness. 

4. Negroni Sbagliato

Although the name of this cocktail actually means “incorrect Negroni”, it’s an obvious great choice for the warmer months. It’s one of the most well-loved summer cocktails and that’s why it also lands among the Memorial Day cocktail recipes you must make. You can swap the prosecco wine for gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth. It will be a hit!

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5. Paloma

A super delicious summery drink you can make for Memorial Day is also the popular Paloma cocktail. It contains only three ingredients, which is one of the adult beverage trends in the latest years. Get your best tequila out of the beverage storage, mix it with lime juice, add grapefruit soda, and voilà! Keep the garnishing simple, too. 

6. Watermelon Mojito

Looking for something even more refreshing than the classic Mojito? Watermelon Mojito is what you need! This fruity twist of the classic is a must among the Memorial Day cocktail recipes to try. All you have to do is muddle watermelon and mint, add agave nectar, some light rum, and lime juice. Finish off with lots of ice and a pretty garnish. This cocktail will keep your customers happy and refreshed! 

7. Peach Beer Julep

Beer drinkers are everywhere and sometimes they want to switch up their favorite craft brews for a cocktail. Have the Peach Beer Julep in your menu for these customers and they will be overjoyed. The drink is simple, you can make it by combining bourbon with muddled peach slices and topping it off with IPA simple syrup. Add lots of ice and a nice, fresh garnish and it’s done!

8. Sea Breeze

Three-ingredient drinks are common in our list of Memorial Day cocktail recipes to try and that’s for a good reason. They are simple to make and simply so delicious! Try the cocktail Sea Breeze which requires only vodka, cranberry, and grapefruit juice. If you want to make a fancier drink, use craft vodka as a base for the cocktail. 

9. Rosé Sangria

Rosé wine is one of the most preferred drinks during the warmer months. Sangria is also a drink with great popularity and mixing both of them creates the perfect summer cocktail. If you wonder how to make sangria, read our article on the topic. We also covered the different sangria flavors and sangria cocktail recipes. As for the Memorial Day sangria, we suggest you add raspberries, strawberries, and lemon in terms of fruit. Together with the wine, you should also mix Pamplemousse liqueur and club soda.

10. Aperol Spritz

There’s no surprise that people will want an Aperol Spritz even if it’s not on the menu. Be prepared to serve this crowd favorite this Memorial Day, too. If you haven’t served it before, be prepared to make it with sparkling wine, Aperol, and soda water. Although it’s not a themed cocktail or something special, it’s a great way to kick off the summer season. 

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Frequently Asked Questions about Memorial Day Cocktail Recipes

If you have some other questions regarding Memorial Day cocktail recipes, you should read the following answers. We have covered some frequently asked questions to give you more useful information on the topic. 

What Are Some Non-Alcoholic Memorial Day Drink Options?

Non-alcoholic options include mocktails like Virgin Mojitos, Virgin Pina Coladas, Lemonades, Iced Teas, and fruit-infused waters. You can always come up with your own recipes for non-alcoholic drinks, too. 

How Can I Ensure Responsible Drinking during Memorial Day Celebrations?

Consider providing non-alcoholic options for guests who choose not to drink and ones who want to alternate between different drinks. Make sure there are plenty of alcoholic-free beverages like sodas, water, and other drinks. Have plenty of snacks and good food, too. 

Can I Make Batch Cocktails for Memorial Day Gatherings?

Yes! Batch cocktails are great for serving a crowd. Consider making large pitchers of Sangria, Margaritas, or Mojitos ahead of time for easy serving and enjoyment. You can research other bulk recipes, too. 

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