You don’t need to be related to Tom Cruise or have a chemistry degree to make mouthwatering cocktails at home. With just a few super-simple steps it's so easy to put a fresh twist on a classic and create something filled to the brim with flair. All you need is a little slice of imagination with a too-right-i-can attitude and suddenly the world is your cocktail cabinet.

/assets/en-gb/birds-eye-cocktail.jpg

Welcome to the bar

Spring is in the air. As the days lengthen and the mood lifts, a whole collection of cocktails are waiting for you. So unpack the deckchairs, send out the shaker and share the ice and glasses around. It’s time to show your guest the light with some great drinks.

Spring and summer cocktail recipes are ready to be enjoyed: lighter and – like the days – longer. So turn up the heat. Put the sun back in sundowner and give it your best shot with a great cocktail combo.

You can start by bringing out the Mojito or the Cuba Libre – the drinks of Caribbean island are perfect at this time of year, especially alongside grilled fare. Baste your way into friends’ hearts with a proper barbecue where cocktails like the Tequila Sunrise loom large.

On the subject of emotion, don’t forget that Valentine’s Day is on the horizon – with or without the romantic sunset in the background. You can stir things up by serving the Cosmopolitan in an elegant Martini-type glass. Or take a subtler approach with the French 75, an old flame of a cocktail that’s best served with rosé sparkling wine or champagne for the reddish hue of romance.

If you’re a chocoholic, there’s never a better time to darken your drinks. Check out the Raspberry and Chocolate Espresso Martini, layers of cocoa plus a little fruit. And you certainly can’t ignore the Easter Flip. With white chocolate, frothed-up cream and chocolate shavings, it’s a double-choc delight made to match this cacao-friendly occasion.

And don’t forget that Eggnog cocktails aren’t just for Christmas. Crack open a bottle of rum and add egg, cream and milk. This cocktail is also known as milk or egg punch – so Easter can be a day of dairy.

Talking of Punch, how about creating one for your next house party? Rather than being stuck making cocktails while everyone else has all the fun, you can prepare a bowl ahead of time. Mix together a Rum Punch with fruit and spices – it will taste even better as the flavours combine overnight. Then as guests arrive pour in fruit juice and leave the ladle for self-serve.

As you’re ticking off the days, are you also keeping score? The Premier League cranks up to a finish in late spring and you’ll have mates coming over to watch a game or two. No doubt you’ll want to give them a superior viewing experience with the Scotch Sour. A balance of sweet and citric, it echoes the feeling of watching your favourite team. Or for Wimbledon, the Strawberry Daiquiri is the perfect serve. Watch a few sets with shaken-up rum, lime, sugar and strawberries. Guests will love it!

But don’t be stuck inside all summer. A picnic is a great place for a cocktail – even if you don’t mix it on-site. Place mint and lime inside a bottle of white rum and head outside to lay down the rug. Next pour into glasses and add mixer. You can garnish with more mint from the bag or maybe a nearby hedgerow.

Bring sunshine into your glass with great cocktails. At thebar.com you can embrace the great outdoors and leave the dark days behind.

Read more Read less