Nothing beats the heat of summer like a frozen cocktail, especially when the temps are scorching and an ice cube just doesn't cut it. From a blended blood-orange Negroni to a forthcoming watermelon slushy from a new restaurant, java joint and cocktail lounge, here are seven frosty drinks in Denver to keep you chill throughout the summer.
Napoleon Dynamite from Stoic & Genuine
The latest (and greatest) granita to hit the cocktail menu at Stoic & Genuine is the Napoleon Dynamite made with Armagnac, Myers's dark Jamaican rum, housemade vanilla and orgeat syrups and fresh pineapples and cherries. It's dangerously boozy, absolutely delicious and makes you want to keep sipping and sipping until there's nothing left but air.
1701 Wynkoop St.; 303-640-3474
Endive mojito from Mizuna
Mizuna bar manger Austin Carson knows his way around a cocktail — frozen and otherwise — and his vegetal endive mojito, a concoction of rum, fresh lime juice, steeped endive sorbet, crushed ice and grape seed extract tincture, is a lovely, easy-drinking cocktail that's festooned with a fragrant (and edible) cornflower atomized with a spritz of coconut oil infused with allspice and kaffir lime leaves.
225 E. Seventh Ave.; 303-832-4778
Sake slushy from Bones
There's already a killer cocktail list at Bones, but the terrific new sake slushies, available in several different flavors, including green apple, peach, raspberry, blackberry and cherry, really know how to preach the gospel of summer. Made with crushed sno-cone ice, Sho Chiku Bai Classic Junmai sake and Leopold Bros. or St. George liqueurs, they're the drink of choice on the flower-flush patio.
701 Grant St.; 303-860-2929
Frozen blood-orange Negroni from Linger
Justin Cucci's "eatuary" (the clever play on words results from the fact that the space is a former mortuary) slings some of the best cocktails in the city, and the frozen blood-orange Negroni, an icy summer sipper crafted from London dry gin, fresh blood-orange juice, Noilly Prat sweet vermouth, Campari, Aperol and a splash of water, should definitely snag a spot on your summer bucket list.
2030 W. 30th Ave.; 303-993-3120
Surfer Rosada from Small Wonder Food and Wine
This adorable neighborhood charmer in West Highland, open since late March, just introduced the Surfer Rosada to its cocktail lineup, and it's already a hit. Served in a martini glass, the gin-based libation, infused with lavender bitters and topped with a splash of sparkling rosé, floats islands of housemade lemon sorbet.
3489 W. 32nd Ave.; 303-433-2535
Frozen strawberry lemonade from Jax Fish House
It's always a lively party scene at Jax, but Hi^Jax, the rooftop patio at the Glendale location, is where convivial crowds gather to slurp oysters and sip a frozen strawberry-infused vodka lemonade garnished with an orange peel and a bourbon-soaked cherry.
650 S. Colorado Blvd., Glendale; 303-756-6449
Watermelon mule slushy from Carbon
You'll have to wait a few more weeks before indulging in bar director Kyle Duce's watermelon mule slushy, but once Carbon — and Habit, its adjacent donut dispensary — open later this month, you can bet that the mint-garnished slushy will be a huge draw on sun-soaked afternoons on the patio. The drink, made with juiced watermelon, a squeeze of lime, Old Forester 80-proof bourbon, crushed ice, rhubarb bitters and a splash of Prosecco, mimics the texture of Italian ice and tastes like summer in a glass.