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Aug 16, 2013 08:48 AM

Best Cocktail by the Pitcher?

I'm having a bbq tomorrow, what should I serve as a cocktail? I'd prefer to be able to whip up a big pitcher of it.

No limits/restrictions on type of booze or anything, I'm perfectly open to suggestions!

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  1. If you have a tall clear glass pitcher, tequila sunrise is a blast from the past, but pretty as a pitcher.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Veggo

      I have been on a few margarita posts this week and now this ... and I wonder why I am presently craving a tequila drink at 10:52 am CST!

      P.S. This would be a super easy pitcher drink.

      1. re: hawkeyeui93

        I present to you, Jeffrey Morgenthaler's Gallon of Margaritas

        6 cups tequila (you’ll need to buy two fifths for this
        )2½ cups triple sec (just buy one fifth, please)
        2½ cups fresh lime juice
        2½ cups fresh lemon juice
        2 cups simple syrup

        Mix ingredients together in gallon container. Don’t forget to refrigerate! When ready to serve, pour mixture into a 16-ounce glass filled with ice. Salted rim is optional.

        Makes 21 margaritas.

        1. re: hawkeyeui93

          I don't need any kinda Margarita discussion to remind me that Reposado is a fine breakfast food.

          As to cocktails, I'm ultimately a fan of mixing up 4 to 1 martinis in a glass pitcher with a stirrer. Particularly, if I'm home alone.

          1. re: MGZ

            "Particularly, if I'm home alone." LOL

      2. My go to summer pitcher drink is a gin buck: Two parts gin to one part fresh lemon or lime juice and one part ginger beer or ginger ale.

        2 Replies
        1. re: hawkeyeui93

          That sounds lovely and so very summery! I'm going to have to try it.

          1. re: modthyrth

            It is my favorite Summer drink [and in the Winter when I am missing Summer]. You can go a little lighter on the gin if you like. Let me know what you think.

        2. If that pitcher is going to hold more than one round, the second round will be diluted by the ice while you drink the first round.

          You might consider a punch recipe, which is intended to have extra dilution.

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          2 Replies
          1. re: EvergreenDan

            Just make your ice from the mixer.

            I make homemade lemonade using mint simple syrup as the sweetener. Pour into ice cube trays and freeze. If you want to be fancy add a mint leaf to each cube.

            Make another batch and add citron vodka along with a scant amount of St Germaine. Perfect by the pitcher. Serve over the lemonade ice cubes,

            1. re: EvergreenDan

              I don't add ice to my gin buck pitcher and have a bucket nearby for my guests to add as much or as little as they like ...

            2. I had a gathering in June and made a pitcher of Gold Rush. It's bourbon (I used honey bourbon), simple syrup made with honey instead of sugar and fresh lemon juice. It was a big hit.

              The recipe, as well as other suggestions, are here.


              1. Just wanted to bump this thread up and see if there are some ideas for pitcher cocktails for the cooler, autumn weather. The only liquor I don't care for is Scotch. Anything else I'd love to try!

                15 Replies
                1. re: Tehama

                  A Saturn works well

                  It is a gin based Blender drink

                  I think it performs well with Hendricks gin and I did not care for it with Junipero however everyone else seemed to enjoy it

                  1. re: Dapuma

                    Hi Dapuma! Thanks for the reply. Just to clarify in case you weren't replying to my query, but do you think a blender drink would good for autumn? Thanks so much!

                    1. re: Tehama

                      The Saturn is refreshing and simple to make, scales up very well - I think of it as a great pool summer drink but I don't think that a good cocktail has a season really, it does not taste of Xmas spices if that is what you are looking for though, but is lighter and complex

                      When i make it i usually multiply the recipe x8 and serve 4 doubles to elimnate having to make batches over and over

                      I was about to say that it doesnt have a ton of obscure ingredients but then i always have that stuff on hand so maybe just not obsure to me since I make tiki drinks mostly


                      I use Small Hand Foods Orgeat, Auntie Lilokiki Passion Fruit Syrup (half as much) but BG Reynolds would work in there as well, and Velvet Taylor Falernum

                      Falernum has low ABV so it will spoil, make sure to refrigerate it once opened (vacuvin as well if possible), i have spoiled plenty of bottles by leaving them out once opened

                    1. re: cobpdx

                      Though I love cocktails and appreciate the craft, I'm afraid my own bartending skills are fairly limited, so I appreciate the suggestions so much. I just googled the Vesper recipe and that sounds like a knock-your-socks-off-kinda-drink.

                      I must be a complete dumbass, but I bought a bottle of Lillet this afternoon and don't see where it says if it is red or white; I noticed the Vesper called for Lillet blanc.

                      Advice for the novice? Thank you!

                        1. re: EvergreenDan

                          Apparently I am more of a dumbass than I realized. The bottle was so dark that I suppose it was the "red" Lillet darkening the glass, rather than the color of the glass bottle.

                          (Saw this little article at:


                          So, apparently I have a bottle of Lillet red. Best suggestion for a cocktail with Lillet red?

                          Thank you so much, EvergreenDan. I always enjoy your posts so much!

                          1. re: Tehama

                            Generally people prefer Lillet blanc and Dubonnet rouge.

                            I'd search for cocktails that use Dubonnet (rouge) or use it where you'd use sweet vermouth.

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                            1. re: Tehama

                              It's nice on the rocks with a twist or with club soda for an aperitif. If you have Campari (or Grand Classico) I've also enjoyed Americano variations using Lillet Rouge instead of sweet vermouth.

                          2. re: Tehama

                            Yes, the Vesper is strong, but you CAN make it a tad less potent by increasing the proportion of Lillet Blanc (which is lower in alcohol). Also, pour small portions and make sure each drink sees some ice at some point as this cocktail benefits from a little dilution from the ice. It comes across as a "softer" version of a martini. Neither of the drinks I mentioned would be very good for people who are used to fruity/sweeter drinks.

                            What I like about the pitcher drinks that don't have any citrus mixers is that they stay well mixed so you don't have to fuss with them.

                            Good luck!

                            1. re: cobpdx

                              Thank you so much copbpdx! Apparently I have a bottle of Lillet red in my possession, so I need to trek back out and purchase a bottle of blanc.

                              The Vesper sounds lovely! I am a big martini fan, so I really cannot wait to try the Vesper. I have at least 3 other friends that love a nice martini, so this is going to be my next cocktail to serve.

                              Last weekend I ended up making the Autumn Bellini from Saveur for my guests. Wasn't exactly the pitcher drink I was trying to come up with, but didn't take long to make, and it was nice with the crisp chill in the evening air.

                              Thank you so much for your help and explanation!

                              1. re: Tehama

                                You are not a dumb-ass!

                                How we are back to the negroni or a manhattan...use the Lillet Rouge as you would a sweet vermouth and see how you like it.

                                I've actually not tried the Lillet Rouge, but that is what I would do with it if I had it.

                                1. re: cobpdx

                                  Sounds like a plan! Thank you!