It’s during the hottest days of the summer when heating up the kitchen by firing up the stove seems like the last thing on my list. Firing up the bbq is a decent alternative, dinner salads made out of garden veggies, and cold sandwiches get us through the July/August season without having to turn the air conditioning on in our home. When I’m planning a dinner party during these months all too often I fall back to sucking down the clichéd ice-cold beer around the grill or the table. Maybe chilled white or rose wines? Sure, they’re great hot weather standbys, but I’m completely ignoring the garden when making those kind of drinks. Why not use the fresh herbs, fruits, and even vegetables when making cocktails? Last winter I received a cocktail recipe book that has prodded me along on this idea, and while initially following the recipes verbatim I’ve now moved on to making my own cocktail creations from what’s fresh in the yard.