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Take Your Cocktails to the Next Level with Local and Organic Mixers

August 02, 2016

By Jen Baguss

Ah summer, the time of year when sitting on a patio or deck with a cool beverage for extended hours throughout the day is completely acceptable. Whether you’re cooling down with a delicious microbrew from one of Ottawa’s several amazing local breweries or you prefer a cocktail of the sweeter variety, there’s no doubt that summer is the best time to get a little (responsibly) tipsy.

These days, cocktails born from neon-coloured syrups and preservatives-laden garnishes are passé. As the need for sustainable and healthy food and drink options grows, so does the market for somewhat healthy drink mixers. You probably will be adding alcohol to it, after all, so let’s at least make sure the mixers we use are at least good for us.

Here are some of our favourite organic cocktail and mixer recipes for your perfect summer drink!

Walter Caesar Mix

If you’re above drinking age in Canada, chances are you list the ubiquitous Caesar as one of your favourite cocktails. These delicious drinks are most commonly made with syrups and mixers that contain seriously high amounts of MSG and high-fructose corn syrup; or in other words, ingredients that you definitely don’t want in your beloved Caesar. The answer to this problem comes from Vancouver, BC. Walter Caesar Mix can be found on the shelves at Rainbow Foods and is the ideal mixer for your ultimate summertime Caesar. The mix is all-natural and is made with vine-ripened tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, graded horseradish, clam juice from the North Atlantic and a bevy of other natural spices. Try it today!

Watermelon

In the mood for something slushy? Watermelon is a great way to cool down on a hot summer day, even more so when you add it to a cocktail. Sure, we’ve all seen the Facebook videos of people hollowing out watermelons and adding a whole pile of gin, vodka or tequila. But if hollowing out a watermelon to tap it seems like a lot of work, try this simple trick at home: Cut your watermelon into about one-inch cubes. Place the cubes on a sheet of parchment paper on a pan and freeze it for a couple hours. Take the frozen cubes and toss them in a blender with a mix of your favourite alcohol and any other flavours you’d be interested in trying, (I’d recommend some mint leaves) blend it until the watermelon is slushy and voila! You have your very own tipsy summertime slush.

Split Tree Cocktail Co.

Fans of Dragon’s Den will remember Split Tree Cocktail Co. from their recent appearance on the show. These cocktail mixers share a trait with Walter Caesar Mix in that they only use natural ingredients without preservatives or other shady products that you can’t pronounce. Flavours such as lavender lemon, rhubarb and elderflower, ginger vanilla and the limited edition strawberry lemonade have our mouths watering already. Being from the Ottawa Valley, we love incorporating Split Tree mixes into our cocktails for a tasty and ethical treat.

So there you have it, three tasty and healthy options to help you craft a killer summertime cocktail in Ottawa. Enjoy responsibly!

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