Three summer cocktails for Memorial Day Weekend


Memorial Day has morphed from just a solemn day of remembrance for the men and women who fought for our country and died in war into the official kickoff of summer. It’s a perfect weekend to salute our heroes and to kickback with a summery cocktail.

If you like to have someone else do the work for you so you can truly relax, try some new summer cocktails at the W Austin. The W’s libationist, Joyce Garrison is mixing breezy drinks with a kick of Texas-style heat.

If you are intrepid enough to match your mixology skills against one of Austin’s “Best Mixologist” as recognized in 2010 by the Austin Chronicle, you’re in luck. She has graciously provided three recipes to play along at home.

Garrison’s first drink uses Austin’s Tito’s Handmade Vodka with refreshing lemonade and a bite of jalapeño.

Jalapeno Cucumber Lemonade

  • 1.5 ounces Tito’s Vodka
  • 2.5 ounces cucumber water
  • 1 ounce jalapeño infused simple syrup
  • 1 ounce lemon juice
  • Build in pint glass
  • Shake
  • Strain into glass with Kold draft ice
  • Garnish with cucumber spear

It just isn’t a summer holiday without watermelon. Skip spitting the seeds and sip on this tequila martini instead.

Sandia SipperSandia Sipper

  • 1.5 ounces Cazadores Respoda Tequila
  • .5 ounce lime juice
  • 3 cubes watermelon
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1/8 ounce agave nectar
  • Muddle watermelon with lime juice in shaker glass.  Add all ingredients with ice and shake.  Strain into rocks glass with ice and half rim of salt.  Garnish with watermelon cube and lime wedge.

Garrison says her third drink is inspired by W Austin’s WET Deck, and will have you feeling like you’re sitting poolside. I think she may have had something else in mind.


  • Hendrick’s gin 1.5 ounces
  • St. germane .5 ounce
  • Lemon juice .5 ounce
  • Simple syrup  .5 ounce
  • Grapefruit juice 1.5 ounce
  • Bubbles
  • Shake all without bubbles and pour over fresh ice then top with bubbles

There you have it; your recipe for summer relaxation on Memorial Day weekend.

Published by

Matt McGinnis

As a marketing strategist for Pen & Tell Us, Matt McGinnis provides marketing, branding and communications counsel to food and beverage as well as other clients globally. He is also an avid beverage enthusiast, chronicling his interests as a Food & Drink contributing writer for CultureMap, as the Food & Drink columnist for Austin Man Magazine, and as a blogger for What Are You Drinking?. He is passionate about the wine industry having previously worked at a winery in Oregon and in wine sales. He has served as Guest Host of Sommelier Cinema at the Alamo Drafthouse, and is a Certified Sommelier in the Court of Master Sommeliers. His writing has been recognized as a Top 10 Food Blog by the Austin Chronicle in 2013 and 2014, with a 2011 Texas Social Media Award from the Austin American-Statesman.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *