Mint Juleps

Honestly, the hardest part about making mint juleps is getting your hands on large quantities of crushed ice, if you don’t have a fancy refrigerator. Julep fans disagree on whether or not bubbly water should be part of the recipe (here are four variations (paywall), all of which can be made with this shopping list). Really, though, this is just bourbon, mint, sugar, and water. I like Evan Williams bourbon for this. Bulleit works nicely, too. But if you have a favorite bourbon, go for it.

Beyond margaritas and mint juleps

With this shopping list you can also make a whiskey sour (which is a delicious and underappreciated drink when made with fresh juice instead of flabby sour mix), a daiquiri, a mojito, or a white wine spritzer. You can’t go wrong with vinho verde for your spritzers, but an easy sauvignon blanc, or even a rosé works, too. Half wine, half seltzer over ice with a squeeze of lemon or a dash of bitters is all you need—trust us, it takes work to make a bad spritz.

A lot of these recipes call for simple syrup, which—as the name suggests—is simple to make (one part sugar to one part water, heated in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves), and is also great for sweetening cold brew coffee in warm weather (and, let’s face it, cold brew season has arrived).

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