Summer in Australia is a beautiful thing. In addition to balmy nights and crystal-clear waters, we consider a summer-inspired cocktail to sip on the perfect partnership for the coastal culture. So, with the warmer weather fast approaching, we thought we'd start investigating this season's It cocktail that will be sure to take over your Instagram feeds, and equally, your bar tabs. To glean some insight into what the top cocktails trends might look like, we tapped James France, the managing director of Australian liquor marketing company, Vanguard Luxury Brands, for his predictions.
France suggests a lean towards spirits from Australia. "There is a discernible trend towards Aussie spirits. It's real and not just wishful thinking," he says. "A lot of the top bars are now using Mr Black coffee liqueur in their espresso martinis because it tastes amazing and it's made in Australia. A Four Pillars gin and tonic with a wedge of orange is also creating quite a stir. Again, one of the appeals of this gin is that it is Australian-made," France continues.
To find out how to take these trends from the bar to our glasses, mixologist and educator at Patrón, Gee David shares his picks for the cocktails that'll be shaking up summer. Keep scrolling to find out what they are.
PREDICTION #1: The spritz is here to stay.
"The Aperol spritz will continue to boom this year," according to David. For the uninitiated, this Italian cocktail calls for Aperol—a semi-sweet aperitif—Prosecco, and just a splash of soda water. It's also typically garnished with an orange wheel.
"I think it will double in popularity compared to the last two years," he predicts, attributing this rise of demand to the fact that the spritz is ideal for lighter, day time drinking. We couldn't agree more.
PREDICTION #2: Espresso martinis aren't going anywhere.
"The espresso martini is now a cornerstone of Aussie drinking," David states. This clever cocktail usually includes a combination of vodka, simple syrup, coffee liqueur, and a shot of freshly brewed espresso. It's perfect for late nights when you need the caffeine boost from a coffee beverage but you're already out on the town.
PREDICTION #3: Unique additions will be joining your classic favorites.
"Twists on classic cocktails will continue to be popular," says David. So, it's time to prepare yourself for upcoming changes to a few of your favorite original cocktails. According to him, this includes things like flavored tonics for gin beverages, elderflower liquors in spritzs, and white negronis.
PREDICTION #4: Expect color to be just as important as flavor.
"Following on from frosé, Aperol spritz, orange wine, and blue Prosecco are about to be big," David predicts. This might have something to do with the common urge to post pictures of fun cocktails on social media, according to the mixologist. "Drinks with color will become more and more popular, especially for those avid Instagrammers," he notes.