Even fireworks and Roman candles can’t light up the night the way these effervescent libations do. So chill the Champagne, cava or prosecco. These fizzy flutes are definitely sips worthy of toasting our independence.
Mrs. Robinson (Bacchus Bar, Portland, Ore.)
Andrew Call pours local Aviation American gin because its complex, herbaceous flavor plays off the tart lime and grapefruit. “Adding some house-made pineapple simple syrup gives it a welcome hint of a day on the beach,” says Call. “[And] topping it off with dry sparkling wine and Peychaud’s bitters makes all the flavors come together and light up your tongue.”
Land of Happy (312 Chicago)
“Sweet, herbaceous and acidic all at once, this is a great pre-dinner cocktail before a nice glass of white wine,” says head bartender Jenn Knott of her cocktail. She experimented with using a syrup instead of a shrub, but the latter ended up keeping the drink more fresh and tart. White balsamic vinegar, made in Italy from the trebbiano grape, is mixed with white wine vinegar and cooked at a low temperature to retain its clearish color.
Bit of Tongue (Lola, Kentucky, Ky.)
“I enjoy using grapefruit in a shrub because it allows the brightness and flavor of the grapefruit to come through and cuts down on the typical tartness of the grapefruit,” says Nic Christiansen, the beverage director at Lola. “Allowing the acid from the apple cider vinegar and the sugar to lift the grapefruit flavor [creates] a more complex grapefruit flavor.” Locally produced Copper & Kings Absinthe Superior lends the sip classic anise flavor, as well as forward floral and citrus notes.
Vice Royalty (Arroz, Washington, D.C.)
Beverage director Taha Ismail wanted to do a seasonal riff on a Pisco Sour that was clean and refreshing. Fresh mandarin and yuzu juices make for a citrus-y cordial that offsets Strega’s piney profile, while Peychaud’s bitters meld nicely with the pisco’s floral notes. “This drink has enough complexity without being overwhelming and [is] very consumable on any patio,” he says.