Sipping Citrus in the Summer

Photo courtesy: Local on North Duluth

Summer is citrus season and the perfect time to utilize peak seasonal ingredients like grapefruit, lemon, lime and tangerine.  While we get super nostalgic with good ole’ summertime lemonade, we thought we’d turn our attention to a lesser known citrus that truly shines as a summertime cocktail—GRAPEFRUIT! 

Grapefruit is the perfect base for cocktails because it provides a combination of fruity, sweet and bitter, making any drink easier to consume. Drink enthusiasts might suggest trying a grapefruit cocktail, known as a Paloma, as a citrus alternative to the margarita. Paloma’s are typically not as strong as a margarita, slightly less acidic, a little bubbly and very refreshing, making it the perfect cocktail on a hot summer day. 


We asked Rylei, a bartender from Local on North in Duluth, what makes the grapefruit a great flavor in drinks? 


Rylei: Grapefruit is great in drinks because it has a more bitter and slightly sour taste that you don’t find in most fruits, which helps balance out a cocktail without taking away from the fruitiness the way campari or a classic angostura bitters might.


DIG: Local on North has a great bar program with the “Paloma with a Twist” as a staple on their menu, but what gives it the “twist”? 


Rylei: We add pineapple to our classic Paloma and use Calirosa blanco tequila, which is a slightly smoked tequila that has been aged in red wine barrels for 30 days, giving it a pinkish hue.


If you really want to step up your cocktail game this summer while enjoying happy hour at the pool, Rylei suggests you try making Local on North’s Uva 75!  It is a take on the classic French 75 and is an excellent summertime cocktail—bright and refreshing.


Uva 75

Ingredients: 1oz Wonderbird Gin, 0.75oz fresh grapefruit juice, 0.5oz fresh lemon juice, 0.5oz simple syrup, 0.25oz elderflower liqueur, 0.5 oz sparkling rose.

Instructions: Add gin, fruit juice, simple syrup, elderflower liqueur, and ice to a cocktail shaker and give it a solid shake for 20 seconds. Double strain into a champagne flute and top with sparkling rose. Garnish with lemon peel and serve.