Mixed Greens Blog

Mixed Greens Blog
Living Sustainably in the Pacific Northwest


At the Locabar: Cucumber Mint Cooler

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At last we have weather worthy of drinking a “cooler”. For a group of six thirsty drinkers, start out with 1 cup of mint leaves, packed with no stems. You’ll also need 3 japanese cucumbers preferably from Mair Farm-Taki at the Farmers Market. Regular or english cukes will also work but these japanese cucumbers are definitely a step above the others.

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Rinse 3 limes, slice thinly and place in a pitcher. Squeeze the juice from 3 more limes and add to the pitcher along with the mint leaves and 2 sliced cucumbers. Then add 1/2 cup sugar and try to work up a sweat by muddling all the ingredients together.

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cucumbermintcooler15 of 28 Add 2 cups gin or vodka (if you are trying to keep it local, we suggest Aviation Gin, distilled in Portland). Place in the fridge and let it sit for at least 30 minutes.

Peel the remaining cuke and cut lengthwise into spears to use for garnish.

Fill 6 glasses with ice, strain the mixture from the pitcher into each glass. If you’d like, top off with sparkling water. Garnish with a cucumber spear and a sprig of mint, sit back and sip away.

cucumbermintcooler17 of 28 A version of this recipe was a winner in the 2006 NYTimes summer cocktail contest. It was adapted from Adam Frank.

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3 Responses »

  1. This looks light, delicious, and easy, like a Seattle mint julep. Perfect for summer. Thanks for the idea!

  2. I’m back to report that we tried this and it was wonderfully refreshing. In place of cucumbers I used borage leaves, which are growing all over our pea patch. Just a few leaves gave great cucumbery flavor. Thanks for the recipe.

  3. Audrey, what a great idea to use borage leaves. I can’t wait to try your variation.