The chance to enjoy a summer drinks in the great outdoors is one of summers biggest perks, but some of life’s greatest annoyances come along with it. A sparkling glass of wine or frosty mug of beer go hand in hand with many summer gatherings. Sweet tea and sugary sodas attract just as many sultry summer issues. It is near impossible to enjoy a full summer beverage in the light of day without the ice melting and diluting it, bugs flying into it or it warming up to the temperature of something just short of a cup of cocoa. There are a lot of little life hacks and ingenious tips we can all put to good use in these unaccommodating seasonal days.
Any department store will stock little plastic icecubes in their housewares department. Especially in the summer. You simply pop the little liquid-filled plastic bubbles into the freezer. When they are frozen solid, throw them in your wine glass. It also helps to use colored ice bubbles to tell each guests glass apart. You can also freeze the wine itself. Although pure alcohol does not freeze, wine will and not lose much of its potency. This works great if you like to drink the same kind of wine. Pour your choice of wine into any ice cube tray and place it in the freezer. Pop a frozen wine cube into your glass on a hot day and enjoy how much longer it can stay cold. If you freeze different types of wine, throw a several different cubes in a blender or a glass of club soda for a refreshing fruity drink.
Freeze fruit to keep your wine cold without watering down the taste with ice. Fresh berries, peaches, grapes or just about any type of fruit is great to freeze and pop into a glass of wine on a humid afternoon. If your making Daiquiris or some other frozen treat, you can throw them right in the mixture for an even more flavorful concoction. Freeze larger slices of fruit, like honeydew, watermelon or pineapple and then float them in big pitchers of Sangria or sparkling wines.
There are all types of ways to make your own cooler when you need to keep a few bottled beverages cold on warm days. Any sort of bucket, wagon, pot or kiddie toy can be used to fill with ice and make the perfect cooler. Even plastic bags can be filled with ice, although they do not travel well. Another neat trick, if you’re just sitting in the yard is to freeze a cast iron skillet. They stay cold for several hours and make a great place to sit a few wine glasses or beers in the shade. Alternately, use frozen water balloons. They fit anywhere, and unless they leak, won’t make a mess.
Strangely enough, old newspaper can help your wine bottle stay cold. Wrapping damp newspaper around your bottle of wine causes the water in the newspaper to evaporate before the water around the bottle. In the same vein, you can buy or make wine coozies that fit over your entire bottle or glass. Several companies also make wine glasses that freeze and pout the wine into afterward. A frozen liquid between two planes of glass keeps the wine cold.
There are lots of ingenious ways to keep your summer drinks from sizzling in the sun. It is fun to try to employ your wit and make use of what is on-hand but there is always some new and fun invention to put to good use making summer memories.