It’s almost July, which means we are well into peak outdoor season here in Chicago. Luckily, we have several ways to beat the heat with beaches, rooftops and patios, and unique places to enjoy a refreshing frozen cocktail. Here are some of our local favorites.

Favorite Twist on Frosé:

Friesling at Cindy’s Rooftop

Cindy’s nailed it with this unique twist, blending slushy Riesling and Aperol. Enjoy it on the patio while taking in the amazing views of Millennium Park.

Best Frosé:

Apogee Bar at the Dana Hotel & Spa

frozen cocktails: frosé at Apogee Bar at the Dana Hotel & Spa

Photo courtesy of The Fifty/50 Management Group Inc.

Apogee — another rooftop bar — is our pick for the best frosé. It packs quite a punch, with raspberry, St. Germain, and Aperol.

Most Surprising:

Frozen Last Word at The Davis Theater

What better way to cool down than with a summer blockbuster and a frozen cocktail? You can choose from their Peach Frozé or their gin and maraschino blended Last Word cocktail. We love this newly renovated theater for its inventive snacks, bar menu, and retro atmosphere.

Classic:

The Phil Hill Frozen Piña Colada at The Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club

frozen cocktails: The Phil Hill Frozen Piña Colada at the Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club

Photo courtesy of The Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club.

Escape the heat at this hip shuffleboard club that has an amazing bar. The Royal Palms take on the classic Piña Colada blends white rum, cream of coconut, pineapple juice, and coconut water — how could you go wrong?

Most Unique:

Watermelon Challenge at The Dawson

frozen cocktails: Watermelon Challenge at The Dawson

Photo by Gage Hospitality Group.

This summer The Dawson is featuring a special lineup of drinks for their Camp Dawson series and The Watermelon Challenge is one of our favorites. The blend of watermelon and coconut water makes it extra refreshing.

Best Presentation:

Banana Daiquiri at Lost Lake

How could you not love an adorable dolphin banana on top of a classic daiquiri? With dozens of fun cocktails to choose from at Lost Lake, this frozen one is our favorite for its fun presentation.

Fan Favorite:

Frozen Negroni at Parson’s Chicken & Fish

frozen cocktails: Frozen Negroni at Parson’s Chicken & Fish

Photo by Clayton Hauck.

Not only is this fan favorite tasty, but you can also have it delivered. Parson’s introduced the adorable to-groni last year. This is a frozen drink I’d have delivered in the winter — it is that good!

For Whiskey Lovers:

The Big Bend at Lonesome Rose

frozen cocktails: The Big Bend at Lonesome Rose

Photo courtesy of Lonesome Rose.

This frozen concoction of bonded bourbon, apple cider, and crème de cassis from Chicago’s Lonesome Rose pairs up swimmingly with clever Tex-Mex staples like grilled cheese quesadillas and swordfish ceviche. Want to master this one at home? Here’s how. —Nicole Schnitzler

  • 1.5 ounces bonded bourbon
  • .5 ounce apple cider
  • .5 ounce lemon juice and zest
  • .25 ounce crème de cassis
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1.5 cups of ice

Directions: Blend all ingredients together on medium speed for 20 seconds. Yep — that’s it.

Shed That (Plastic) Straw!

Before you reach for a straw to sip that cool drink, consider these facts from Chicago’s Shedd Aquarium: Roughly 19 billion pounds of plastic pollute the world’s oceans every year. Plastic straws don’t biodegrade and are almost impossible to recycle. And, Americans use an estimated 500 million straw every. single. day. In other words, all those little straws turn into one really big disaster for our environment. Do your part to #sheddthestraw by saying no to plastic straws, encouraging your favorite watering holes to replace plastic straws with biodegradable paper ones, and thanking the restaurants and bars that have already made the swap for doing their part to save our oceans!

 

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Macaire DouglasMacaire Douglas lives in Chicago with her husband and two sons. She proudly supports Share Our Spare, a local nonprofit that collects goods for children in need.