5 drinks ideal for summer get-togethers

(Photo by Denise Truscello/Getty Images for LARAS)
(Photo by Denise Truscello/Getty Images for LARAS) /

While the pandemic is starting to near its end, summer is heating up, which seems like it’s a good time to put together a list of 5 drinks for summer get-togethers.

While the exact nature of such a get-together might vary – maybe it’s for Memorial Day or the Fourth of July, maybe it’s just a “the pandemic is over!” reunion with friends or family – most of the drinks in the cooler stay the same.

Of course, you’ll need to keep your guests in mind – do they have allergies, or an aversion to alcohol? Will there be kids there? If so, a non-caffeinated option is a good plan to have handy.

And the food being eaten also plays a role – will it be stuff that can be scarfed down with just hands, like hot dogs, chips and burgers, or will silverware be needed? How sweet are the desserts? That’s an important balance that should be considered as well.

5 drinks for summer get-togethers to make the perfect compliment to the food

So, without further ado, here are 5 drinks for summer get-togethers that could help you pull off the perfect party.


Soda is the most obvious of our 5 drinks for summer get-togethers list, because it’s the most popular, and three or four options at least are ideal. It’s quick to pick up on the way there, and doesn’t cost much.

If it’s Fourth of July, then Pepsi is an obvious pick, because the colors work well with the theme, though Coke is also always a great choice. Many people like Dr Pepper as well, and there are also RC Cola or various generic store brands. And don’t forget about the diet versions for those who might be watching calories (or just prefer the taste).

Then there’s the fruit-flavored kinds – Mountain Dew, Sierra Mist, etc, if that’s more their style.


If it’s mostly adults and the mood fits, beer is always a good choice. Budweiser is the classic go-to here for this setting, but there are a lot of brands to choose from that could work well.

And just like with diet soda, a light beer option is a good plan, whether that be Miller Lite, Bud Light, or whatever. Coors Light has the color-sensitive packaging that demonstrates the ideal chilled temperature, which is handy, and Busch Light has a long history to donating to important causes.


This is probably more of a regional choice, but tea (either sweetened or unsweetened) makes a good alternative to the first two of our 5 drinks for summer get-togethers. Since it’s far too easy to oversweeten tea, it’s probably a better plan to brew some iced tea and then leave sugar available if guests choose to add it themselves.

And if brewing it yourself if too much of a hassle, then you could always just purchase some pre-bottled stuff like Arizona or Brisk if you prefer sugar bombs, or something like Pure Leaf or Honest Tea if you wanted to be more on the healthy side.

Slightly different options

Really, if you just have beer and soda, you should be set, but if the crowd skews a little younger or you just want to be different, what about seltzers or energy drinks? Seltzers like White Claw are all the rage right now, combining the buzz of alcohol with tasty fruit-focused flavors, and some of the big brands have also jumped into this space as well.

While the Big Three of energy drinks (Red Bull, Rockstar and Monster) are still around and good choices, there has recently been a wave of healthier options chock-full of vitamins, like C4, Bang and Reign.

Iced coffee could also be an intriguing alternate option here as well.

Non-caffeinated stuff

This is a wide range. It includes classic-though-not-exciting water (from the tap if that’s possible in your area, bottled if not), to more traditional kid-friendly options like Kool Aid, Hawaiian Punch or Hi-C.

You could offer some mint sprigs to brighten up the flavor of water, or try something out of the ordinary like dandelion wine.

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What will you be serving at your summer gatherings? Have a great beverage find that FoodSided needs to sip?