This beguiling cooler is liquid bliss. Refreshingly crisp watermelon is made exceptional with honeysuckle vodka from Mississippi distillery Cathead Vodka, but just about any citrusy vodka would make this a fine drink. The distillery, whose name pays homage to the South’s cool blues “cats,” is dedicated to supporting Southern tastes and traditions through its products (they also make a pecan vodka) and philanthropic work (they support Southern blues musicians, folk artists, and writers). I’ll drink to that.
- Yield: 8 Servings
- 8 cups seeded, cubed watermelon, plus wedges for garnish (optional)
- 2 cups lemon-lime soda
- 1 to 1½ cups honeysuckle vodka
- ¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
- ¼ cup light honey, agave nectar, or superfine sugar
- ½ cup orange-flavored liqueur (optional)
- Ice cubes
- Mint sprigs and lime slices for garnish (optional)
- In a blender or food processor, purée the watermelon cubes until smooth. Strain the watermelon pulp through a fine-mesh strainer into a large pitcher, using a spoon to squeeze out as much juice as you can. Discard the remaining pulp.
- Stir in the lemon-lime soda, vodka, lime juice, honey, and orange liqueur (if using). Stir gently and pour the drink into cocktail glasses filled with ice. Garnish with watermelon wedges, lime slices, and mint sprigs, if desired, before serving.