Five Toronto Bars to Drink a Refreshing Summer Cocktail
It's summertime and the sipping is indeed easy. To quench our never-ending thirst for refreshment and variation, many establishments go international during the summer with a tantalizing menu of warm weather-inspired drinks. After all, who knows the best heat-dissipating cocktails than countries with year-round spiked mercury levels? Here are five traditional summer cocktails, and some of the city's best spots to enjoy one, or two, or...
The Drink: Caipirinha
Country of Origin: Brazil
Where to get it: Caju, of course. This Brazilian eatery/Queen West hangout serves up the real thing, with cachaca and muddled limes; there are no substitutions here. The Caipirinha is a lovely cocktail for hot days, a tad stiff but insanely refreshing when done right. At Caju, it's definitely proper, and none too North Americanized. After all, the owner is Brazilian-born.
Caju, 922 Queen Street West
The Drink: Mojito
Country of Origin: Cuba
Where to get it: Mambo Lounge on the Danforth is a Cuban hotspot that serves what some argue are the most authentic Mojitos in Toronto. The one deviation? They use a splash of Perrier. A pretty chic alternative if I do say so myself! Precise amounts of rum, muddled lime juice, sugar, mint, and Perrier make for a fantastic Mojito that's all-too-delicious.
Mambo Lounge, 120 Danforth Ave. Toronto
The Drink: Margarita
Country of Origin: Mexico
Where to get it: Playa Cabana on Dupont has been open awhile, but it seems as though the past few months have heard its name resounding everywhere. It is hugely popular for the exceptional atmosphere (a slice of Mexico in the city), the back covered patio and of course, the Margaritas. You can order them by the pitcher here and rejoice in pure limey delight. Bonus: they're pretty authentic, so those who've spent Spring Break in Cancun will vividly relive those footloose and fancy-free days.
Playa Cabana, 111 Dupont St., Toronto
The Drink: Dark 'n' Stormy
Country of Origin: Bermuda
Where to get it: I fell in love with this simple drink in Bermuda, and other than mixing Gosling's Rum with Gosling's Ginger Beer, have yet to find any as sublime up north. However, SpiritHouse on Portland does a good job coming close. Bermuda rum, ginger beer, and freshly squeezed lime juice make this Dark 'n' Stormy all light and balmy, perfect for a hot summer's night.
SpiritHouse, 487 Adelaide Street West
The Drink: Sangria
Country of Origin: Spain
Where to get it: If you want to be schooled on one of the best ways to make Sangria, then head to, well, School. Their “flasks” of red and white Sangria couldn't be fruitier or more satiating. Either way, this fruit-punch-meets-wine-and-has-a-love-child drink is true perfection while lounging comfortably on their gorgeous patio.
School, 70 Fraser Ave
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