The dog days of summer officially arrive this weekend, and we’ll see August stretch before us all hot and hazy. The holiday weekend marks the halfway point of summer break (cue tears) so if you need a drink to cry into — or one to cheer you up while cooling you down — I found just the one at Island Lake Lodge near Fernie, B.C.
The Long Hot Summer is light and refreshing with just a touch of heat from muddled jalapeños to keep things interesting. I love that it uses fresh raspberries and Chambord for sweetness, plus ginger beer for spice and fizz. It’s totally crushable, and even more so if you’re lucky enough to drink it on a patio with a view of the Lizard Range. Cheers!
Beat the heat with this spicy cooler — aptly named a Long Hot Summer — from Island Lake Lodge.
Long Hot Summer
- 2 raspberries
- 2 jalapeño slices
- 1 oz fresh lime juice
- 1 oz Absolut vodka
- 1/2 oz Chambord
- Top ginger beer
- Garnish: Lime wedge and a raspberry
Method: In the base of a cocktail shaker, muddle raspberries and jalapeño slices with lime juice. Add vodka and Chambord, plus ice, then shake. Strain into a rocks glass filled with new ice and top with ginger beer. Garnish with a lime wedge on the rim and a raspberry dropped into the glass.
— Recipe courtesy Island Lake Lodge
I first wrote about this cocktail two years ago after it won a Beam Global competition at Vine Arts. Its creator, Matt LaRocque, formerly of Taste, moved over to Charcut and brought this drink with him. In the intervening years he’s played with the recipe a bit and I got to sample the updated Hashtag Boom at an event at Charcut last night.
LaRocque has switched bourbons to Bulleit, added a half ounce of New Deal Ginger liqueur and traded Fentiman’s for Grizzly Paw ginger beer. Most significantly, the drink is now served in a tall glass instead of a short one and tastes longer on the ginger beer and less spirit-forward on the bourbon. I could taste the bourbon, it just wasn’t all-powerful. The gastrique adds a nice spicy, sightly vinegar-y taste that’s subtle but still noticeable. Best of all, the drink was delicious paired with Charcut’s famous charcuterie (love the mortadella!).
The Hashtag Boom, a strong, long and spicy cocktail, complements Charcut’s delicious charcuterie.
The evening was hosted by Maui tourism folks, so we talked a lot about the island, food and cocktail culture, and one of its upcoming food and wine festivals, Ka’anapali Fresh. I easily pictured myself on a lanai drinking a Hashtag Boom, which happens to be the exact colour of a Hawaiian sunset.
This warming, ginger-imbued winter sip is the colour of a Hawaiian sunset.
- 1.5 oz Bulleit bourbon
- .5 oz New Deal Ginger
- 1 oz red pepper gastrique
- 1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
- 2 dashes peach bitters
- Top Grizzly Paw ginger beer
- Garnish: lemon twist
Method: Shake all ingredients except ginger beer with ice. Strain into a tall glass over fresh ice.
— Recipe courtesy Charcut