Brooklyn Lemonade

with bourbon & bitters

Good morning, universe. Welcome to another Monday. I hope that you all had a nice little weekend. After the biblical rain that we experienced on Friday, I certainly did. Seriously, though, I couldn’t believe the torrential downpour that we got on Friday. I’m really glad that I had my umbrella in my giant Mary Poppins bag that I lug around with me everywhere. It’s not always such a bad thing to be attached to 10 pounds of miscellaneous items now, is it? I’m sure that carrying around my purse is messing up my back one way or another, but what can you do? Maybe one day I will have a car, but until then, the umbrella, along with a water bottle, sunglasses, chapstick, my wallet, camera, and whatever else I deem important that day gets slung over my shoulder and onward we go. Oh, and a sweater, because even if it’s 90 degrees now, what if it gets a little chilly later? I must maintain an even room temperature at all times – being too hot or too cold is literally the worst.

Brooklyn Lemonade

The 104th Street Community Garden.
Anyway, this past weekend we were invited to a barbecue on the Upper West Side, a neighborhood that I think I’ve only ever been to one time. I’m glad we made the trek, though. Our friend Shahab is a member of a community garden up there, and it’s gorgeous. I’m always excited to be around nature of any kind, seeing as how we live in a concrete jungle where no grass can possibly grow, so when I see gardens and trees and whatnot, it’s fun. Meats were grilled, beers were drunk, and I had an absolute blast. I made miniature apple pies, as my obsession with miniature desserts will never end, and Shahab had the genius idea of putting hot dogs and sausages on baguettes, which with plenty of mustard and some pickled things, were absolutely delicious. However, an all day barbecue didn’t stop Kramer and I from grabbing a slice at 11 PM on our way home – you know us better than that. On Sunday, we slept in for the first time in a while (and I mean really slept in, like 10:30 AM slept in), did some chores (mopping, vacuuming, being productive adults, etc.), then went for a walk up to a new restaurant and bar called OTB, followed by a walk down to Maison Premiere where the wait was nuts, so we hopped on over to Noorman’s Kil for an ice cold gin martini with big, briny olives. Even though Noorman’s is a fantastic whisky bar, we watched Casino Royale recently (because my main man Mads is the villan) and I’ve been craving a martini ever since. We came home and watched Game of Thrones before bed, and I really wish we had just gone to bed because talk about one of the most boring, anticlimactic season finales ever. I feel like I didn’t watch anything at all.

Brooklyn Lemonade

Anyway, if I had a pitcher or two at home, I would have brought this Brooklyn Lemonade with me to the barbecue on Saturday. It’s got everything I love in a cocktail: beer, bourbon, and bitters. Obviously we like our cocktails in Brooklyn quite a bit, and seeing as how I just so happened to have made this one with Brooklyn Summer Ale, I figured it’d be an appropriate name. You can use simple syrup in place of the maple syrup for a sweetener, if you like, but I like the depth of flavor that the maple adds to the cocktail and it’s just one less step if you don’t already have simple syrup in your fridge. The bitters are optional, too, but I am a huge fan of bitters and think it makes almost any drink better with a dash or two added. I’ve actually got a bottle of baked apple bitters that would have done quite well in this drink, but decided to keep it more straightforward, as I’m sure you all don’t have the weird bitters collection that I do. Only I spend money on speciality bar items that get used once every few months. Or am I? Either way, shake up a few of these drinks, enjoy the warm weather, and maybe come give Brooklyn a visit! It’ll certainly put you in the mood.

Brooklyn Lemonade

Our friend Shahab, birthday boy and grill master.
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I don’t do well in the sun.
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So handsome.

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Kramer and Matt helping Shahab balance.
Brooklyn Lemonade
And what better way to relax after a long day (or BBQ) than with bourbon, lemonade, and beer? Tell me.

Brooklyn Lemonade
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 drinks
A refreshing summer cocktail made with bourbon, maple syrup, beer, and lemonade.
  • 4 ounces bourbon
  • 2 ounces maple syrup
  • juice of 2 lemons, plus more for garnish
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 1 12 oz. summer ale
  1. In a shaker, combine the bourbon, maple syrup, lemon juice, and bitters. Fill with ice and shake for 10 seconds. Strain into two tall, chilled glasses and top with the beer. Serve with a wheel of lemon and a straw.


14 Responses

  1. Tieghan says:

    I really need to vist New york!! Your post always make me want to come so bad! LOL

    This lemonade sounds awesome!

  2. Your BBQ spot looks lovely. I can not wait till summer hits to go out and try this recipe

  3. It rained like crazy here in Montreal too! Gah! But I drank inside and all was well….wish I would have thought of this! Woman, this looks mighty tasty.

  4. I looove Brooklyn Summer. I will have to try this!

  5. I recently discovered your blog and I have no idea why it took me so long to get here. :) These look great – I am a HUGE fan of beer cocktails. And Game of Thrones…except of course for last night’s episode. SNORE.

  6. Omigosh, this has Father’s Day BBQ written all over it. So trying it this weekend. Beautiful photos, too. Glad I found you through Foodgawker!

  7. Sasha says:

    I have never used bitters and know nothing about them but I’m super curious to buy some – it’s about time that my cocktails became more sophisticated. What kind do you recommend I buy for my official bitters de-virginization?
    BTW, your photos are getting better and better with each post. Good job!

  8. It sounds like you had yet another amazing weekend! I can’t imagine what it’s like to live without any grass or gardens around. There are so many great things about NYC, but I don’t think I’d make a good New Yorker with the whole concrete jungle thing.

  9. Boozy lemonade?! Where do I sign up?!

  10. Lynna says:

    That garden looks beautiful! How awesome must it have been to have a bbq there! And you look pretty in those photos!! I might now a few people who would love this lemonade!

  11. Trish allam says:

    I’ve been following off and on since you were engaged, and watching your little brother do homework! I always come back, and love the drink recipes. I also still love and make the Italian recipe with the roasted garlic bulbs slathered in Olive Oil, tomatoes, and onions, with pene pasta. Found it years ago and it is great for making slight alterations, depending on what’s in season. Thanks for all the great pics and recipes. You always make me feel like a grownup. Hey wait! I am a grandmother!

  12. shira says:

    Your beer-i-fied cocktails are super-cool! We loved them! We featured your Brooklyn Lemonade in our Daily Fix post: “New Toasts: To Your Rest” today on BeautifulNow! It’s a new site focused on beautiful things happening in the world right now. Check it out! . We hope you like it!

  13. […] Jackie Dodd gives us a rundown of her favorite Summer beer cocktails, including one of our personal favorites the Brooklyn Lemonade from Crepes of Wrath. […]

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