Take inspiration from the latest trends in drinks to help you refresh your summer parties for the new year, from tricked-up ice to hangover-free drinking.
Ready to party like it’s 2023? We’ve rounded up the top drink trends to inspire your summer entertaining. Whether you’re hosting a long weekend barbecue, Hottest 100 pool party, Australian Open tennis finals gathering, or pride party during WorldPride celebrations, there’s a drink for everyone and all occasions.
Make your celebration one to remember with the season’s biggest trend: a drink station. Dress a table with a colourful cloth then add cake stands, wooden boxes or wooden blocks to create levels for glasses and accessories.
Once you’ve decided what cocktails to serve, create the bases then pour them into large jugs or drinks dispensers. Try Sangria, homemade raspberry lemonade or a classic punch mix. Be sure to label each jug and include whether it contains alcohol.
A selection of spirits – something like Blck Vodka is a good starting point – a bucket of ice, paper straws, napkins and wedges of lemon, lime and orange are the final pieces of the drink station puzzle
Experiment with flavoured ice cubes. Fans of a dirty martini can freeze green olives in their brine to add to chilled gin or vodka. Squeeze fresh orange juice then freeze into cubes as the finishing touch when you mix up the Aperol Spritz & Postcards from Italy Prosecco Gift Pack. Spruce up gin and tonics with elderflower cordial ice blocks or rosemary sprigs frozen into water. The options are endless.
You can also try making boozy ice cubes using your own simple base – make a frosé by blending strawberries, sparkling rosé and a squeeze of lemon juice – or a premixed drink. Go for something fruity but not too sweet. Billson’s Fruit Tangle Vodka Mixed Drink is a great choice. It combines triple-distilled vodka from Beechworth in Victoria’s High Country blended with Billson’s classic sodas in raspberry and citrus flavours.
Imagine this… Your party guests ring the doorbell and you greet them with an incredible cocktail. One you made up well in advance, so it doesn’t create last-minute stress. Simply scale up the recipe for your favourite drink, then chill up to a day ahead. Wait till the last minute to pour it into a big pitcher or a punch bowl then add ice. Get started with our margarita punch recipe.
Brewers, winemakers and distillers continue to create drinks with full, delicious flavours but a far lower – and even zero – alcohol content. Perfect if you’re taking a break after a hectic holiday season. Cooking a barbecue with sausages, steaks and even grilled veggies? Pour a glass of McGuigan Zero Shiraz, developed over the course of two years to retain the varietal characteristics. Pour sundowner gin and tonics, even for the drivers in the group. Award-winning distiller Four Pillars has used its signature Rare Dry Gin as a model for Four Pillars Bandwagon. Another heavy hitter entering the 0ABV market is Australia’s biggest selling beer brand. Great Northern Zero offers a full beer taste, a crisp finish and no hangover.
Low-carb drinks have been on the market for a few years now, and people love them because they cause less bloating than regular bevs while being super crisp and refreshing. The latest addition to the milieu is Strongbow Ultra Low Carb Apple Cider.
For a while, everyone was drinking super hoppy IPAs. Then it was heavier stouts and sour beers. Increasingly, though, drinkers are looking for an easy-drinking beer that delivers summer refreshment. And you know what hits all those marks? Lager. It’s a sweet, crisp, clean king of brews. Check out Spill Easy Going Lager, recently launched by reality TV star Abbie Chatfield and designed to appeal to all Aussie drinkers. It’s delicious as a session beer or to sip with tacos, grilled prawns or burgers.
Winemaking has many traditions and people don’t always welcome change. Case in point: remember when screwcaps were introduced to a lot of eyebrow raising? Well, here’s a change everyone can get behind – top Australian makers are releasing wine in flat PET bottles. Recycled, recyclable, space saving and unbreakable, this packaging is great for picnics, parties and the environment. Try Banrock Station Eco-Bottle Pinot Grigio, Banrock Station Eco-Bottle Pinot Noir and Taylors One Small Step Eco-Bottle Chardonnay.