When you serve summer drinks, presentation can make a world of difference. These simple presentation tips can make even the simplest glass of water look and feel like a gourmet treat. Although a cool beverage is always welcome in the hot summer months, you can take your summer drinks to the next level with these presentation tips, culled from lifestyle experts and from the handbooks of professional caterers. These simple techniques are perfect for dressing up your summer drinks for a party, or for just making a regular afternoon feel like a party! Read on to discover an arsenal of professional presentation tricks for dressing up your summer drinks.
A Fresh Touch
Nothing says “summer” like freshness. In the season when sun-ripened produce is pouring out of backyard gardens all across the world, why not add a fresh touch to your summer drinks? Floating a fresh garnish like a sprig of mint or a slice of lemon in your summer drinks makes for presentation that elevates even a glass of water or club soda into a beverage worthy of a five star restaurant. The aroma of fresh ingredients added to summer drinks just before serving makes them even more enticing.
Accent Ice Cubes
Ice cubes are a must to keep summer drinks cold and refreshing. However, ice can look bland in a glass, and taste bland as it melts into your summer drinks. These necessary evils can become the visual highlight of a beverage, and preserve the taste, with one simple change. Instead of freezing water, freeze a liquid that will match your drink! If you’re serving lemonade, for example, try filling your ice cube tray with orange juice for a harmonious dash of color in your glass, and a pleasing hint of extra citrus in your drink. Any non-alcoholic liquid you serve can be frozen into ice, so use your creativity to create beautiful and tasty frozen accents for your summer drinks. With a little bit of advance warning, you can even create layered ice cubes! Fill your ice cube tray one third full, and let freeze until the top of the liquid solidifies. Then, pour in another kind of liquid, let freeze until the top of that is solid, and fill the tray to the top with the same kind of liquid you started with. This will create unique, custom colored and flavored striped ice cubes perfect for your summer drinks. Try creating an exotic “citrus sandwich” cube by freezing a middle layer of lemonade between layers of tangerine juice.
A few hours before you serve a round of summer drinks, slide some glasses into the fridge to chill. The frostier the glass, the prettier the appearance of a summer drink. Plus, the added cooling power of a chilled glass is a welcome relief from the heat for the person holding it, and helps the drink stand up to the warm weather.
If you’re serving summer drinks that contain fruit, or would match a fruit flavor, consider ditching ice cubes all together. Instead, drop a few pieces of frozen fruit into your glass for a beautiful presentation that would make a professional caterer proud. Throw a tray of grapes, strawberries, or banana slices into your fridge and let them freeze overnight, or until hard to the touch. Then, use these frozen treats in lieu of ice cubes for stunning presentation and serious cooling power in your summer drinks.
Arrange A Great Tray
If you haven’t got time to try out one of the presentation techniques that require advance preparation, like frozen fruit or chilled glasses, you can still dress up your summer drinks at the last minute just by arranging the drinks creatively on an appealing tray. For a unique serving tray, use a large picture frame with a raised rim, and slide a copy of a favorite image inside. Then, pour your summer drinks into a variety of differently shaped and sized glasses, and head for the table. An assortment of glasses makes it easy for guests or family members to remember whose drink is whose, and everyone enjoys selecting their own summer drinks from the bountiful array.