Father’s Day is a chance to celebrate any father figure in your life who is there to wipe your tears, take out the trash, remind you to get your oil changed, and support you during your biggest moments. To show the special man in your life just how much he means to you, kick off the festivities with a boozy beverage. From a classic old-fashioned or whiskey and coke to brunch favorites like a Mimosa or Bloody Mary, Dad will finally get the chance to do what he loves most—kick back and relax.
1. Zingy Michelada With Celery Salt
This is the perfect drink for a hot summer day and honestly, the ultimate Dad drink. Think of a michelada as a more refreshing, lower-ABV version of a Bloody Mary—this one is equal parts homemade bloody Mary mix and a light lager beer.
2. Darkness At the Edge of Town
In one of our many reader-voted recipe contests, this three-ingredient cocktail—made with gin, Aperol, and a porter-style beer—was crowned the winner.
There are a few things that my Dad loves to do—rake leaves, check the weather report, “fire up the grill”…and occasionally drink Manhattans. This classic cocktail will never go out of style (even if Dad’s Merrells have).
4. The Perfect Negroni
If Dad can’t stop watching Stanley Tucci’s Searching for Italyhe’ll love it when you present him with a freshly made negroni on Father’s Day.
5. Old Fashioned
For an old-fashioned guy, there’s this old-fashioned drink. Give your dad the makings of this cocktail—mainly a bottle of good rye whiskey and Angostura bitters—so that he can make one himself.
6. A Very Good Bloody Mary
Not only is this a “very good” Bloody Mary…we might go so far as to call it the very best. It’s made with tomato juice, dill pickle juice, freshly squeezed lemon juice, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, and hot sauce.
7. Session Manhattan
This lower-ABV version of a Manhattan cuts back on the rye whiskey (but don’t worry—it’s still there) and incorporates two kinds of vermouth and sherry for a delicious Father’s Day drink.
8. Our Best Classic Mimosa
Hosting a Father’s Day brunch? Mix the mimosa template with different kinds of juices: “A few of our favorite players are pomegranate juice, grapefruit juice, watermelon juice, guava juice, pineapple juice, and mango juice,” writes recipe developer Ella Quittner.
9. Bourbon Old Fashioned
A classic old fashioned cocktail is traditionally made with rye whiskey, but we love how well the caramel-vanilla notes in bourbon play along with the simple syrup (which is easy-peasy to make yourself).
10. Tom Collins
Father’s Day is just days away from the official start of summer, but get in the mood a little early with this super refreshing cocktail that’s reminiscent of a boozy lemonade.
11. Coffee Old Fashioned
If there’s one brunch cocktail that has Dad written all over it, it’s this one—made with Scotch whiskey, coffee liqueur, PX Sherry, and mole bitters.
12. Bourbon Orange Fizz
A lot of people think of bourbon as the type of drink you sip while cozying up by the fire, but it’s actually quite sweet. That’s why we love this fizzy cocktail, which pairs bourbon with freshly squeezed orange and lemon juices and champagne.
13. Old Fashioned Highball From Maker’s Mark
This refreshing bourbon cocktail will quench Dad’s thirst on a hot June day.
14. Rosemary Vodka Tonic
My father-in-law loves drinking a vodka tonic, so I have a feeling he’ll love this earthy, slightly citrusy upgrade.
15. Whiskey & Cola With Orange Bitters
Recipe developer Shelley Worrell livened up this classic by adding orange bitters, a squeeze of lime juice, and fresh mint leaves, “which complement the aromas of the cola and the whiskey, and bring an extra bit of freshness.”
16. Coffee Manhattan
Start Dad’s day off with a celebratory brunch beverage like this Manhattan, made with coffee liqueur and Amaro.
17. Pineapple Paloma
Transport Dad to the tropics for Father’s Day (at least, metaphorically) with this fruity tequila cocktail that will inspire him to blast Jimmy Buffet all day long.
A modern drink for the modern man in your life, the Penicillin is a spicy-sweet drink that balances flavor like nobody’s business. “By spraying the peaty-smoky Scotch over the top of the finished cocktail, the drinker first gets that intense, briny, and aromatic hit, which gives way to the sweet, spicy mix of the remaining ingredients,” explains recipe developer (and Food52’s resident drink expert!) John DeBary.
What are you mixing up for Dad on Father’s Day? Let us know in the comments below!