The Bourbon Smash cocktail. Photo: Tom McCarthy Jr.

The Bourbon Smash cocktail. Photo: Tom McCarthy Jr.

With bars and restaurants around the state temporarily closing to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Friday and Saturday nights just haven’t felt as festive. Luckily, there are ways to bring the party to your house.

Gov. Greg Abbott has now permitted dining and drinking establishments to offer alcohol to-go and for delivery alongside food orders. Some have been packaging cocktail kits that include all the drink’s ingredients for customers to mix at home. For example, Bowen House in Dallas is currently offering $45 cocktail kits that feature ingredients to make several drinks, including an old fashioned, daiquiri, and jalapeño-mint paloma; and Guero’s Taco Bar in Austin has $40 margarita kits that come with tequila, orange liqueur, and lime juice.

Texas Highways also has a collection of cocktail recipes to share from our archives. Because liquor stores and grocery stores remain open during this time as essential businesses, you should be able to access (or get delivered to your door) everything you need to make these simple drinks. Send the recipes to your pals and hop on a video call for a digital happy hour.

As always, please drink responsibly.

Cucumber Gin and Tonic

This cocktail recipe from the Elk Store Winery & Distillery in Fredericksburg is a twist on the classic. The Elk Store is now offering wine and bottles of their small-batch housemade liquor to-go and for delivery. Within the next two weeks, they will start to offer bottled cocktails.

Peach Bellini

While peach season is still a couple of months away, you can get a jump start on the taste of summer with this recipe that combines homemade peach puree with wine from William Chris Vineyards. The recipe comes from Hye Market, which is now offering curbside pick-up and delivery.

Bourbon Smash

This Milam & Greene Distillery bourbon cocktail is fruity and refreshing. The Blanco-based spirits company has pivoted some of its operations to creating hand sanitizer, which it will distribute for free in Austin, Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio.

Ranch Water

Featuring just a few simple ingredients, ranch water might be the easiest cocktail to throw together with what you already have in your house. The Gage Hotel in Marathon, where this cocktail is purported to have been invented, is currently offering cocktails and food to-go.

Mardi Gras Punch

While Mardi Gras is well behind us now, we can remember its halcyon days with this fruity concoction. The Tremont House in Galveston, where this recipe originates, remains open. You can read its COVID-19 statement and updates here.

Paloma

Palomas are margaritas’ pink cousin—the addition of grapefruit soda gives it a sweeter taste. This version is made with Desert Door sotol instead of tequila. Desert Door, a distillery based in Driftwood, is also creating hand sanitizer in its facility, which is being distributed for free to first responders and retirement homes.


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