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9 Cocktails Perfectly Engineered For Summer

Culture
Collage by Danielle Moalem

Courtesy of some of New York’s top bartenders

You don't need us to tell you that summer was genetically engineered to provide the ideal setting for the consumption of cocktails. It only makes sense then, that we asked some of our favorite bartenders from some of the best cocktail joints from around the New York area to share some drinks that are perfectly engineered for the summer. What follows are nine matches made in boozy heaven.

Adam Miller, Flagship, New York
"I think people tend to look at bourbon and brandy as cold weather spirits. But I think they play really nicely with summer flavors. People shouldn't feel like their favorite spirit is not summer-appropriate. Apple, almond, and lemon with a bit of bitters is your answer to a fun summer bourbon cocktail."

The Kick Back
Fresh mint leaves
1 oz. Laird's Applejack
1 oz. Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon
.75 oz. almond orgeat syrup
.75 oz. lemon juices
4 dashes Angostura bitters

Put fresh mint leaves at bottom of a Pilsner glass and cover with pellet ice. Whip and shake all ingredients except bitters and pour over ice. Add more crushed ice and then float the Ango bitters. Add more pellet ice and garnish with a mint bouquet and a dehydrated apple wheel. 

Jessa Vida, Blacktail, New York
"The Hugo Bracer is a great summer cocktail because it's refreshing with hints of stone fruit and a little sriracha spice. We use a sriracha tincture, along with fresh lemon juice and local apple brandy and bourbon, as the base. The drink is modified with aquavit, shrub, and pomegranate syrup for extra layers and depth."

The Hugo Bracer 
1 oz. Laird's Straight Apple Brandy
1 oz. Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon
.75 oz. lemon juice
.5 oz. pomegranate molasses
.5 oz. Clement Creole Shrubb
.25 oz. cane syrup
.25 oz. Linie Aquavit
1/2 tsp sriracha tincture

Shake all the ingredients, pour in a glass, and garnish with lemon twists.

Aaron Polsky, Harvard & Stone, Los Angeles
 "The Garden Collins is great for late summer both because the produce that you can use as garnish is at its prime, and also because, after a summer of partying, this is a nice way to take a break and enjoy the weather and the outdoors."

The Garden Collins
2 oz. Seedlip Garden
.75 oz. simple syrup
.5 oz. lemon juice
A dash of celery bitters
Splash of soda

Shake all the ingredients, top with soda, and garnish with mint if desired.

Lucinda Sterling, Middle Branch, New York
"Hold the gin. This summer-ready aperitif-style drink showcases the smooth silkiness that is unique to Slane Irish Whiskey, with tonic water opening up the gentle flavors of vanilla and caramel which pair nicely with the notes of rose from the Italicus. The citrus-meets-floral palate, along with a top-off of tonic, makes this the perfect fair weather sipper that you can enjoy from day to night, while the whiskey's warmth makes it ideal for pairing with grilled meats and other summer favorites." 

Into Thin Air
1 oz. Slane Irish Whiskey
.5 oz. Italicus Rosolio di Bergamotto
.5 oz. freshly squeezed lemon juice
Splash of tonic water

Combine whiskey, Italicus, and fresh lemon juice in a Collins glass with ice. Top with tonic water. Garnish with a lemon wedge. 


Pam Wiznitzer, Roosterspin, New Jersey
"The Jersey Get Down is the perfect summer drink because it drinks like a glass of iced tea, uses great spirits, and won't break the bank!"

Jersey Get Down
1 oz. Four Roses
.5 oz. Laird's Straight Apple Brandy
1.5 oz. Oolong tea
.5 oz. simple syrup  
Citric acid  

Combine and stir all ingredients, then pour into highball with fresh Ice. Garnish with a dehydrated lemon wheel.  

Meaghan Dorman, Raines Law Room, New York
"We love the earthy, floral notes of pisco in the summer. A touch of peach keeps this cocktail bright and fresh."

The Blossom & Six
1.5 oz. La Diablada Pisco
2 oz. chilled hibiscus tea
.75 oz. grapefruit juice
.75 oz. Giffard Crème de Peche
A splash of Perrier

Combine all ingredients except Perrier, shake briefly with ice, strain into a stemless wine glass, and top with Perrier. Garnish with lemon twist.

Ash Hausserman, Dear Irving, New York City
"Named for a mention in Frank Sinatra song, this cocktail is smooth and elegant. Inspired by Italian sodas, it's also lightly floral and fluffy."

The Lady Charmaine
1 oz. pisco
2 oz. rosé wine
1 oz. cream 
.5 oz. St-Germain
.5 oz Giffard Crème de Peche
Splash of soda water
Splash of blossom water

Whip, shake, and strain all the ingredients except soda and blossom waters into a glass with two ice cubes. Add club soda, and the drink will fluff up as the cream gets carbonated. Mist with orange blossom water, garnish with dried rosebuds, and serve with a metal straw.

Meaghan Dorman, The Bennett, New York City
"Fresh and fruity, this cocktail is all about strawberry, raspberry, and citrus notes. It's our way to add a cocktail spin to the 'rosé all day' mantra of summer."

The Strawberry Letter (for a group) 
 
21 oz. rosé wine
10 oz. Perrier
7 oz. Aperol
3.5 oz. Strawberry Shrub

Build in a carafe with ice. Serve in stemless wine glasses over ice and garnish with strawberry slices.

Nick Bennett, Porchlight, New York City
"The Gun Metal Blue is a good summer cocktail because it is refreshing and delicious. But that’s what makes every good summer cocktail. The Gun Metal Blue is a great summer cocktail because of its playful nature. The bright blue color is reminiscent of every vacation drink that you might come across on a cruise or island resort. A guest will see us making one and, more often than not, they will order one because, let’s face it, if you see a blue drink, you drink a blue drink."

The Gun Metal Blue 
1.5 oz. Vida Mezcal
.5 oz. blue curaçao
.25 oz. peach brandy
.75 oz. lime juice
.25 oz. bitter cinnamon syrup

Shake all the ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled coupe. Garnish with a flamed orange coin.

Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Well, actually it's crocodile, but she looks out of this world so...

Winnie Harlow walked the Cannes red carpet on Wednesday on her way to a screening of Oh Mercy!, wearing a showstopping gown.

The sheer black dress featured green embroidery on the front and back, which Ralph and Russo confirmed was in the shape of a crocodile. She belted the dress with a black crocodile skin-like belt and finished the look off with some strappy heels. She didn't leave it at just that. For beauty, Harlow packed on full lids of sparkly purple eyeshadow. She kept her hair sleek and simple.

Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Though the brand says otherwise, as Game of Thrones fans, we'd like to think the embroidery is reminiscent of a dragon's skin. Not to mention, Harlow looks out-of-this-world beautiful in it.

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Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images

That denim kimono!!

Marion Cotillard shut down the Cannes red carpet on Wednesday at a screening for Matthias Et Maxime. Instead of an extravagant gown that's expected of the event, Cotillard wore a matching black crop top and shorts. Despite wearing an outfit I typically don to a hot yoga class, she looks incredible. She completed the look with an oversized denim kimono, a statement necklace, and heeled booties.

Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images

At first, I was drawn in by the crop top and hotpants duo, but, after looking closer at the kimono, it's clear that it's the real scene-stealer. The floor-length Balmain piece was decorated with artful rips and dragon motifs. I would like to live in it.

Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Let's all bow down to the Khaleesi of Cannes.

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Photo by Frazer Harrison / Getty Images.

"It doesn't make you weak to ask for help"

Singer Billie Eilish is continuing to open up about mental health, this time in a new PSA video in partnership with the Ad Council and Seize the Awkward.

In the video, Eilish insists that "it doesn't make you weak to ask for help." She doubles down on the importance of asking for help, and stresses the importance of friends and family being there when their close ones reach out and checking in on them as well. "You should be able to ask anyone for help, everyone has to help someone if they need it." According to Eilish, there have been times when someone reached out to her at the exact moment she needed it, and it helped.

It was particularly refreshing to see Eilish acknowledge that there are things she still doesn't know and has to learn about her mental health. At the very beginning of the video, the interviewer asks her to reflect on her mental health journey, and all Eilish can do is let out chortle. "I think when people hear, 'Remember to take care of your mental health,' they think that everyone else is, and that is not at all accurate," she admitted. "You know, for me I'm trying to learn still to make sure that I stay okay."

Check out the PSA below.

Billie Eilish On Mental Health & Friendship | Ad Council www.youtube.com

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Photograph via @kimkardashian.

"#NotOnMyMoodBoard"

Kim Kardashian has definitely been accused of borrowing a design now and then. But when Instagram influencer and Kardashian look-alike Kamilla Osman claimed the entrepreneur copied her birthday look for a Met Gala after-party, Kardashian was not going to let it fly—and shared plenty of photo evidence to shut down the claim.

Fashion industry watchdog Diet Prada first noticed Osman's claims on Instagram and shared side-by-side images of Kardashian's Cher-inspired outfit designed by Mugler and Osman's dress. "Never get confused with who 'inspires' who. They won't give you credit but they will copy," Osman wrote on her IG story. "I designed this dress for my birthday last year. Nobody had a dress like this was an original design."

Kardashian responded by posting the true inspiration behind her look: images of Cher, in similarly sparkly, plunging-neckline dresses and wigs, and of model Yasmeen Ghauri walking a Mugler show in the '90s. In fact, the only similarity between Osman's and Kardashian's looks is the bodycon mini-dress style, which the two are not the first to wear. Among the images, Kardashian included a blank slide with the hashtag "NotOnMyMoodBoard," making it clear that this was in response to Osman's claims.

Screenshot via @KimKardashian Instagram Stories

Screenshot via @KimKardashian Instagram Stories

Though I am with Kim on this one, Kardashian does have a history of co-opting other people's work. From being sued over her Kimoji app, to claims she copied makeup palettes and perfume bottle designs, to being accused of copying Naomi Campbell's entire style, it's far from the first (and probably, far from the last) time Kardashian's name will be mentioned like this.

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After delivered the perfect pep talk

When Lena Waithe took over as a guest host on Jimmy Kimmel Live, her first time ever as a late-night host, actress and friend Halle Berry knew exactly how to pump her up. After Kimmel's security guard Guillermo Rodriguez hit the "Berry Button" (a large button on the wall that says just that), Berry came running out in a backless tee and boyfriend jeans to give Waithe a pep talk... and plant one on her.

Berry rolled in as if she'd just jogged from hanging out with her friends to come to Waithe's immediate aid, joking she wasn't dressed for the occasion; but, let's be real, she could wear a paper bag, and we wouldn't complain. Waithe requested the "Halle Berry juice," similar to her 2002 Oscars speech, and Berry immediately had the lights turned down low and jumped into inspirational speech mode.

"I know that you are a force of nature. You are a beautiful African-American queen going after everything that is hers," Berry said before going on to list Waithe's many titles and accomplishments. She jokingly concluded, "And you already winning, girl, 'cause you are dressed way better than Jimmy ever will," before asking if Waithe needed anything else. Clearly, Waithe thought that was all Berry was there to do, because she said no, but Berry insisted she needed one more thing before grabbing Waithe's face and surprising her with a kiss. "Wow," Waithe reacted after Berry pulled away, and honestly same!

Watch the video, below.

Lena Waithe's Guest Host Monologue on Jimmy Kimmel Live youtu.be

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