Summer drinks ideas with Poetic License and Edinburgh Gin

Summer Drinks ideas with Poetic License and Edinburgh Gins from 31 Dover cocktail recipes

They say the good weather will be coming back soon, and we might even get an Indian Summer, so I’ve been looking for a few new drinks to serve at BBQs and garden parties. Once again I’ve teamed up with 31 Dover to bring you reviews of new drinks, and there are some cocktail ideas to tickle those taste buds.

I’ve been sent a trio of liqueurs by Edinburgh Gin, and the Picnic Gin from Poetic License to try. Let’s start with a quick review of each one, then go on to look at some suggestions for mixed drinks.

The triple pack of Edinburgh Gin’s liqueurs consists of three very different flavoured 20cL bottles. To start with, there’s a raspberry liqueur, a deep pink drink flavoured with real Scottish raspberries. This has a very strong depth of flavour, with the full range of fruity notes and a little tartness to balance it out. This one can be drunk on its own over ice, or added to sparkling wine or any cocktail that calls for a raspberry liqueur (such as Chambord, for example).

The second offering from Edinburgh Gin is an elderflower liqueur, with really delicate, refreshing floral flavours and a medium level of sweetness. It mixes well with prosecco and cava, but it also suits gin based cocktails where it’s not drowned out by stronger flavours.

The final bottle in the trio is an unusual plum and vanilla liqueur. This has quite a rich fruity taste, more autumnal than summery, and it mixes well with red vermouth and darker spirits such as bourbon, brandy or dark rum.

This trio of Edinburgh Gin 20cL liqueurs is available from 31 Dover for £25.85, a discount of £4.00 on buying them separately.

Now on to the Picnic Gin, a deep red gin from Poetic License. 31Dover are currently selling this for £34.95 for a 70cL bottle, and I think it’s a limited edition. This is advertised as a strawberries and cream flavoured gin with notes of herbs, spices and vanilla. On taste testing, I found this to be a very pleasant juniper-heavy gin with a back note of strawberries and wild strawberries. I couldn’t taste the cream or vanilla and it’s not sweet or syrupy at all, but it’s definitely a unique flavour.

The makers suggest serving it with elderflower tonic, which is a good idea so as not to overpower the strawberry taste. You can also serve it as a summer fruit cup, a bit like Pimm’s, with sliced fruit and lemonade.

Cocktail recipe ideas

All that taste testing was great fun, and it inspired me to come up with a few cocktail ideas too. Here are four of the recipes that we liked the best. All recipes make one drink, but can easily be scaled up to serve a crowd.


Flower Power Cooler cocktail recipe

This is a long, refreshing drink for sunnier days.

Flower Power Cooler cocktail recipe gin elderflower liqueur Penny Golightly

  • 25ml Edinburgh Gin elderflower liqueur
  • 25ml London Dry style gin
  • 5cm sprig of fresh lavender leaves
  • 5cm strip of lemon peel
  • 200ml clear lemonade
  • Garnish: fresh lavender flower sprig

In the base of a cocktail shaker, mix elderflower liqueur, lavender leaves and lemon peel. Muddle together for 30 seconds, then add an ice cube and stir in the gin. Double strain into a large ice-filled glass and top up with lemonade, then garnish with fresh lavender flowers.

If you don’t have fresh lavender leaves, you can substitute fresh basil or mint and garnish with a strip of lemon peel.


Raspberry Royale Fizz cocktail recipe

This is a good first drink to welcome your guests to a more sophisticated get together.

Raspberry Royale Fizz cocktail prosecco Penny Golightly

  • 2 drops orange bitters
  • 20ml Edinburgh Gin raspberry liqueur
  • 120ml cava or prosecco
  • Garnish: fresh raspberry and thin orange peel twist

Put the orange bitters and raspberry liqueur into a chilled champagne flute. Gently add half the sparkling wine, let the initial foam subside for a few seconds, and very briefly mix the ingredients with a long handled spoon. Top up with the remaining sparkling wine and add garnish before serving.

If you don’t have orange bitters you can use Angostura bitters, and use a wide orange peel twist instead of a thin one.


Beau’s Festival Fling cocktail recipe

This is a more refreshing, longer version of an Old Fashioned cocktail, with a more fruity flavour. It goes well as a long drink to serve with barbecue food.

Beaus Festival Fling cocktail recipe plum vanilla liqueur bourbon cherry Penny Golightly

  • 40ml bourbon
  • 25ml Edinburgh Gin plum & vanilla liqueur
  • 2 dashes of Jerry Thomas Old Fashioned bitters, or Angostura bitters
  • 2 cocktail cherries & 10ml of the syrup in their jar
  • 80ml freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 80ml sparkling soda water

In the bottom of a large tumbler, muddle together one of the cherries, the cherry syrup, the bitters, and 20ml of the plum and vanilla liqueur. Mix in the bourbon and an ice cube and stir for 30 seconds, then add more ice and top up with equal parts orange juice and soda. Garnish with the remaining cherry and a 5ml drizzle of plum and vanilla liqueur.


Small Island Iced Tea cocktail recipe

This is a really fun version of a fruit cup that needs some prep the day/night before the party, and you can scale it up to serve by the jugful. It also gets round the problem of soggy fruit that you get with Pimm’s.

Small Island Iced Tea cocktail recipe strawberry gin Penny Golightly

  • 40ml Picnic Gin
  • 30ml white vermouth (standard, not extra dry)
  • 30ml sweet sherry
  • 100ml cold Earl Grey tea
  • 150ml clear lemonade
  • Ice cubes packed with red fruit, orange slices and mint sprigs
  • Garnish: edible flower or fresh strawberry

The night before the party, make some large ice cubes packed with red fruits, orange slices and mint sprigs. Make a large pot of Earl Grey tea, brew for five minutes then remove the bags and allow to cool. Just before serving, mix gin, vermouth and sherry in a jug, then gently stir in the cold tea and lemonade. Pour over several large fruit and mint ice cubes in a large glass, and garnish with a flower or fresh strawberry.

For an easy way to make 10 drinks at a time, just mix 400ml gin, 300ml vermouth and 300ml sherry in advance before guests arrive, and put 100ml of this mixture in each glass before topping up with lemonade and tea.


Are you tempted by any of these ingredients or cocktail recipes? Which one’s your favourite?


Full disclosure: Drinks samples kindly supplied by All recipes, comments and opinions my own. Not a paid post.


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