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A Spring Forward Guide to Cruise Cocktails

We didn’t travel much this winter. There was a trip to Key West in February with Beth’s sister and brother-in-law that will go down as legendary, and then another to Provincetown, on Cape Cod in January. But, for the most part, we spent a lot of time working on the East Coast, as the snow piled higher around our basement window.


If you haven’t heard, this winter has been a record breaker in Boston and the South Shore. That’s where we are at the moment, the South Shore…good old Plymouth, Mass…America’s hometown. The snow started falling in mid-January and kept going into March. The weatherman says that over 108 inches fell this winter, making it the snowiest winter ever in Boston, and more may be on the way.

Things got so dire this winter that not even mail carriers ventured out. Days went by before we could leave the house. Chachy, our little 10-pound hound, rarely made an appearance. He spent most of his time snuggled up on our bed under fleece sheets. One of the ways that we passed time during the snowmageddon was to talk about past trips. Jordan, Greece, Italy, and Amsterdam came up a lot, as did our Carnival cruise through the Caribbean. We actually talked a lot about that trip. We talked about the food, warm breezes and water, and, of course, all those glorious ship drinks.


During the cruise we bought a lot of people drinks. It was an assignment, and we took it very seriously. Yes, that’s right, Mrs. Bartender, can you recommend a cocktail that begins with X, Y, or Z? The idea was to create an A to Z cocktail guide for cruisers, and I like to think we hit the mark. The conversations and cocktails stuck with us. And as we talked about the drinks we shared with new friends, we came up with the idea to mix up a fun selection of cocktails for different cruising and travel styles, such as The Relaxation/Spa Cruiser, The Adrenaline/Adventure Cruiser, and the Cultural Cruiser. During an afternoon of reminiscing (and sampling), we came up with these three tasty cruise cocktails to celebrate the arrival of spring.

The Relaxation Cruiser


Strawberry, Lemonade, and Basil Mimosa

What you’ll need:

  • ¾ cup packed fresh basil leaves
  • ½ cup agave or honey
  • ½ cup soda water or sparkling water, chilled
  • ½ cup fresh lemon juice (approximately two large lemons)
  • 8 medium fresh strawberries, sliced
  • One 750ml bottle Prosecco, chilled

How to make it: Combine the basil, lemon juice, and agave in a pitcher. Crush the basil and mix in the strawberries, Prosecco, and soda water. Pour the drink into champagne flutes and serve.

Adrenaline Junkies


Daddy’s Little Helper

What you’ll need:

  • 2 oz. vodka
  • ½ oz. blue curacao
  • 8 oz. energy drink

How to make it: Over ice, pour the energy drink and vodka into a cocktail shaker. Shake for 15 seconds and then pour into a stemmed glass. Top off the cocktail with the blue curacao, stir, and enjoy.

Cultural Cruiser

French 75


What you’ll need:

  • ¾ oz. fresh lemon juice
  • ½ oz. simple syrup
  • 1 ½ oz. gin
  • 2 oz. champagne (or Prosecco), chilled
  • 1 cup ice cubes
  • 1 lemon

How to make it: Use a paring knife to slice a peel from the lemon in a long, thin spiral. (2) In a cocktail shaker, mix gin, lemon juice, and simple syrup. Add ice and shake vigorously for 25 seconds. Strain into a chilled Champagne flute and top with sparkling wine. (3) Curl lemon peel around finger to create the stylish twist. Garnish drink with it and serve with a smile.

Now it’s your turn. What cruise cocktail would you add?