Cool drinks for hot weather
July 17, 2014 4:33 PM   Subscribe

Summer Drinks Around the World: 12 Regional Specialties You Might Not Know
When choosing a summertime bracer, it's all too easy to fall in the same old ruts: I know that I, for one, tend to chug ice-laden seltzer like it's going out of style, opting for a chilled Negroni when I want to go the booze route. But this summer, I've vowed to branch out and explore some of the other refreshing drinks that are enjoyed around the world. From a Colombian beer-and-soda refresher brightened with citrus to a palate-cleansing South Indian yogurt drink, here are twelve lesser-known hot-weather libations from around the world.
posted by Lexica (28 comments total) 44 users marked this as a favorite
I only have ingredients on hand for the lime ones. So a caipirinha it is!
posted by aubilenon at 4:48 PM on July 17, 2014 [1 favorite]

Mm, delicious. Plus I got to hit stuff (ice) with a hammer!
posted by aubilenon at 5:03 PM on July 17, 2014

Soju and cucumber for me.
posted by Literaryhero at 5:26 PM on July 17, 2014

Mmm sour plum soda.

I make my own ume (plum) syrup with green plums every June by dousing them in sugar and letting them sit for about ten days. The plums shrivel up and produce delightful sweet and sour goodness that you dilute with mineral water or soda over ice. My taste of summer! Making syrup, wine, and pickles with green plums keeps me sane during the rainy season and something to look forward to to get me through the miserable steam bath that is the Tokyo summer.
posted by misozaki at 5:41 PM on July 17, 2014 [4 favorites]

Yogurt drinks are the cruelest of vile betrayals. SO TASTY, so refreshing, so fiendishly indigestible.

i weep the fartiest of tears
posted by elizardbits at 5:47 PM on July 17, 2014 [10 favorites]

I'm thinking if it forms tears it may have crossed the textural boundary out of "fart" territory...
posted by nebulawindphone at 5:55 PM on July 17, 2014 [1 favorite]

Tried the just-opened Syrian café around the corner tonight, and chanced on what's evidently a classic summer-Ramadan refresher: sour-sweet tamarind.
posted by progosk at 5:59 PM on July 17, 2014

To hell with the soda. I prefer chilled Beaujolais.
posted by Pararrayos at 6:18 PM on July 17, 2014 [1 favorite]

Since I've stopped drinking (booze) I've been playing around with cold drinks a lot, mostly variations on iced teas. Yesterday I made one with black tea, tamarind, fresh mint, a little lime, and sugar. Before that, black tea with cardamom, cassia, orange zest, rose water, and milk (I'll try evaporated next time!)... Honeydew with green tea, ginger, and lemongrass... mango, peach, black tea... Plain ol' soda water with a bit of orange juice concentrate... Blueberry, ginger, thai basil, white tea... Hibiscus with earl grey... watermelon agua fresca... Lemonade with lemon balm and lavender... And that's without even going into my homemade syrups for sodas kick.

I'm gonna have to try experiment with salty drinks, now.
posted by mingo_clambake at 6:26 PM on July 17, 2014 [5 favorites]

*digs in heels*

Sweet tea is an abomination to iced tea and should be wiped from the planet.

*hunkers down for a long night*
posted by mudpuppie at 6:32 PM on July 17, 2014 [4 favorites]

No no no (nani!) Pastis was not invented in Marseille, it was invented in Avignon, and all Avignonais know this!
posted by TheTingTangTong at 6:39 PM on July 17, 2014

Sweet tea is an abomination to iced tea and should be wiped from the planet.

The first time I drove through the south, I didn't know that sweet tea was a thing, so I kept sending my iced tea back and asking for it without sugar. I didn't understand why they kept getting my drink order wrong.
posted by betweenthebars at 6:43 PM on July 17, 2014 [1 favorite]

Sekanjabin was left off the list? Let me fix that for them.
posted by maudlin at 6:59 PM on July 17, 2014 [1 favorite]

I want a raspberry lime rickey so bad now. And ice cream from a farmstand.
posted by zix at 7:01 PM on July 17, 2014

I've never had a homemade rickey but if you're in New England I think Polar sells a nice raspberry lime one, and I remember Snapple's raspberry lime soda fondly. Polar also makes a nice raspberry lime seltzer, which I think is my favorite of their many flavors.

I finally got around to trying a Pimm's Cup (previously on MetaFilter) for the first time this summer, and oh my god... it is the best thing ever. It's probably a good thing that it's kind of involved to make if you're going to do it up in style with fresh fruit/cucumber/etc, because I would be drinking way too much of it otherwise.
posted by usonian at 7:08 PM on July 17, 2014 [2 favorites]

Rickeys are easy to make, though usually if it's hot enough to make me nostalgic for them, it's too hot to make a simple syrup.

My husband's very fond of instant barley tea. I leave him his toastwater but like a splash of apple cider vinegar and sugar in my ice water.
posted by tchemgrrl at 7:50 PM on July 17, 2014

Tinto de verano is great, but I'm a sucker for the Basque classic kalimotxo (pronounced kah-li-moh-cho) - equal parts Coca-Cola and the cheapest, shittiest red wine you can find.

It's way more delicious than it sounds, promise.
posted by Itaxpica at 8:41 PM on July 17, 2014 [2 favorites]

"Sweet tea is an abomination to iced tea and should be wiped from the planet."

I agree about sweet tea but iced tea with lemon is a nice beverage.

Most of the drinks listed have way too much sugar for hot weather.

And that Neer More. A salty yogurt beverage. This sounds more like a lunch which will be soon followed by a nap interrupted by an urgently needed evacuation. Keep your melted Froyo and give me a Sea Breeze or a Gimlet or a Daiquirí on the patio when it's hot.
posted by vapidave at 9:15 PM on July 17, 2014

A Brazilian friend of mine makes a mean caipirinha using a kind of strong, probably bootleg cachaca she only finds at truck stops in Brazil. It has spoiled me for all other caipirinha-type drinks.

The best lime rickeys in all of New England are served at the snack bar on Star Island, one of the Isles of Shoals off the Maine/New Hampshire coast. They are the best because you can take them out to a rocking chair on the island hotel's long, long porch and watch Gosport Harbor.
posted by Spatch at 9:47 PM on July 17, 2014 [2 favorites]

... it's too hot to make a simple syrup

The most commonly called for strength of simple syrup (1:1) can be made without any extra heat. Just put 1 volumetric unit of sugar in a jar, put the same amount of water in with it, close it, and shake it until it's dissolved. Easy and plenty suitable for hot climes.
posted by aubilenon at 11:37 PM on July 17, 2014 [2 favorites]

Spatch: Indeed, I learned how to make a lime rickey while sitting on the freezer of the Star Island snack bar between the lunch and dinner shift. That clinches it. Lime and club soda now on the grocery list, simple syrup now in progress, though drinking it on East Rock will have to wait for another year.
posted by tchemgrrl at 3:33 AM on July 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

So there's this international food store that I regularly stop by, and for awhile, they had this Turkish hibiscus drink that came in the same kind of Tetrapak container that orange juice and the like does, and I was so happy because it was almost like hibiscus agua fresca and I love that sweet tart taste.

Then they got rid of it.

Now I make do with Polish prickly pear cactus juice. Why do Polish families love cactus juice? I don't know, but I'm delighted that they do.

I once made my own horchata, and it was so good. But it's such a waste of rice that it drives me up the wall. So now I make do with almond milk. Freeze it to a slushy state, add maple syrup and nutmeg, and it's heaven.
posted by Katemonkey at 4:23 AM on July 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

Also, iced tea with lemon all the way.

Even better? Adding one bag of Twinings Lemon Grey, Lady Grey, or Rose Garden to your standard black tea mix. It adds just a tiny bit of flavour to it that makes it even more refreshing and wonderful.

(Tonight I am so making iced tea with one bag of black, one bag of rose, and one bag of lavender. Then tomorrow, slices of lemon, and then I'm chilling in the garden being awesome.)
posted by Katemonkey at 4:29 AM on July 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

Hmm, the list is missing Rooh Afza. Fixed that for you.
posted by Runes at 5:57 AM on July 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

A properly made Pimm's Cup on a hot day is a very special thing. Forget the toff association; it will rock your picnic.
posted by Decani at 6:58 AM on July 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

Sweet tea is an abomination to iced tea and should be wiped from the planet.

Pistols at dawn (following your hunkered night)!

And Sweet Weeping Jesus people, if you don't like the traditional "tea syrup over ice," just ask for unsweet tea, or half-and-half tea. Or better yet an Arnold Palmer/Uptown, which is sweet tea (or whatever your bitter Yankee palates can handle) and lemonade.
posted by Panjandrum at 9:09 AM on July 18, 2014 [2 favorites]

Sweet tea is an abomination to iced tea and should be wiped from the planet.

Agreed, and I'm very surprised this listing omitted iced 麦茶 barley tea, known in Japan as Mu Gi Cha.
posted by Rash at 9:39 AM on July 18, 2014 [1 favorite]

Given all the tea-talk here, just wondering if everyone is wise to the single most fundamental secret to outstanding iced tea, which it took me many tannic years to discover: don't brew/boil - infuse in cold water (overnight) instead...
posted by progosk at 10:25 AM on July 18, 2014

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