>> Nothing beats a cool, refreshing cocktail on a warm summer’s day.

But with cocktail trends constantly changing and updating, it’s important that you keep your drinks menu in vogue and remain ‘shaken, not stirred’.

Here, five experienced mixologists concoct the perfect recipes for this season’s tipples.

Cocktail Hour

Summer thirst quenchers to keep your customers cool

Tom McCarthy, bar manager, Vista at The Trafalgar Hotel, London When it comes to cocktails, people know what they want, they know how the classics should taste and they expect perfection. At Vista, we pride ourselves on consistency and innovation, and promote the tasting of new and improved versions of the classics. For example, our Movista cocktail is a redesign of the classic Mojito, with the addition of cherry wine and thyme, which offers a whole new taste experience.

In terms of trends, this year we’ve seen a move towards the use of ginger, cinnamon and other spices. With the emergence of Kings Ginger and Crabbies, people are definitely indulging in more exotic flavours to create cocktails.

Our biggest and most popular seller is our Vista Boulevard. Inspired by the Boulevards of LA, it’s a refreshing mix of watermelon, ginger and vodka, topped with marshmallows to play with the senses and inject an element of fun to the drink.

We’ve also recently starting making homemade marmalade lemonade, using Chase marmalade vodka. Flavoured vodkas are constantly evolving and the flavour from the marmalade lifts this drink to make it edgy, zesty and thirst quenching.

We’re experimenting with Absolut pepper too, to try and recreate a Bloody Mary ‘Vista style’. My favourite summer spirit, especially for cocktails, has got to be gin. It’s fresh, crisp and I love to mix it with lemon juice, raspberries and

egg white to form a perfect fruity combination of sweet and sour. Berries and gin have long been a popular combination and so to bring them together is a mixologist’s dream.

My top tip for mixing summer cocktails would be to keep it simple – don’t over garnish, and always have lemon and lime on hand. Balance is key when

it comes to cocktails and, without the cut through of the sour, it’s easy for a drink to overpower the senses.

Jamie Logan, mixologist and assistant manager at Osbornes, Jesmond – one of Newcastle’s most fashionable venues www.osbornesjesmond.co.uk

When it comes to preparing perfect, thirst-quenching summer cocktails, the trick

lies in choosing the freshest ingredients possible.

Osbournes recently unveiled a cocktail menu which takes its inspiration from movies, past and present, using combinations that are perfect for the summer.

Tea lovers, for example, can enjoy Despicable Tea – a range of flavoured vodkas mixed with a special blend of in-house tea – or for horror fans there’s

drinks such as Silence of the Jams: rhubarb jam, vanilla and lime, muddled together and then shaken and strained over rum and ice.

If you want to entice customers with the promise of seasonal sensations, take inspiration from some of my other concoctions, all of which feature the freshest summer berries and garden grown herbs.

The Return of the Gin has been a huge hit already. It’s a deliciously refreshing cocktail of gin, Cointreau, tangerines, sage and sugar, muddled, shaken over ice and then finely strained.

One Flew Over the Cucumber Nest is another favourite, particularly as the weather gets warmer. It’s cucumber gin, Chambord, fresh cucumber and raspberries all muddled together and finished off with ginger beer.

Brian Eastment, development chef, Major InternationalCocktails are back in demand across the UK. Old reliable favourites are now being pushed aside in favour of alluring mixes of sophistication, exoticism and sheer tastiness.

Major Fruit Bases offer a really simple way of adding extra fruitiness and depth of flavour which will save you valuable time and money. They will also free your menu from the constraints of the seasons and expensive foreign imports.

For a seriously fruity, rich and concentrated tipple, experiment with a Cherry Mojito.   Place a handful of mint and sliced lime into a cup, add 10 ml of Major Cherry Fruit Base, crush the contents, add ice and 50ml of Claro and muddle.  Pour the contents into a fresh glass, decorate and enjoy!

If you like strawberries you’ll love this refreshing Strawberry Daiquiri. Firstly chill a Martini glass with crushed ice, add 10ml of Major Strawberry Fruit Base into a mixer, add sliced lime, 50ml of Claro and a dash of Grenadine and shake. Double strain the mixture into a Martini glass and decorate the glass to finish.

Absolutely divine for a serious strawberry fix! Try adding 10g of any Major Fruit Base to ⅔ soda water and whisk.  Add ⅓ wine to make ½ litre of sparkling fruity cocktail.Just delicious!

Alternatively, make a non-alcoholic summer punch with fresh fruit, mint, Major Fruit Base and soda water to seriously quench your thirst on a balmy summer’s evening!