Bartender’s Tips for Frozen Cocktails

By: Amber Chase
Hailey Knight, Beverage Director at Felix sharing her tips for frozen cocktails

Hailey Knight, the bar manager at Félix in Charleston, oversees the French bistro’s robust cocktail program and is determined to keep these hot, humid Charleston summers at home something pleasantly memorable with a frosty solution: frozen cocktails.

The challenge is creating frozen cocktails that are refreshing but not overly sweet. Too many of us have sipped frozen cocktails that have missed their mark: leaving watery slush or syrupy flavor at the bottom of glasses. Knight shares her at-home method for maintaining flavor and texture in frozen cocktails claiming, My secret is to freeze berries and use them in place of ice for a more flavorful beverage! My favorite hobby is gardening, so I always have blueberries, blackberries, mint, and am starting to get peaches. However, store-bought works great too!”

Before Félix, Knight developed her serving skills while working at Social Wine Bar and Halls Chophouse in Charleston, where she fell in love with the back-and-forth banter that serving jobs naturally lend themselves to. Joining the team at Félix, Knight quickly rose through the ranks from bartender to bar manager, working alongside owner, Félix Landrum, to create French-inspired recipes like their infamous espresso martini, which she still proudly pours at a high volume today. When she’s not behind the bar, Knight can be found gardening in her brand-new greenhouse or fishing Charleston’s coastal waterways.

Keep Cool with Two Classic Frozen Cocktails

Blackberry Mojito frozen with a blackberry and sprig of mint

Frozen Blackberry Mojito

Often overlooked due to their seedy consistency, blackberries make an amazing addition to a mojito. Paired with a crisp bite of mint, this mojito is herby and refreshing, especially when served frozen. Incredibly versatile, this cocktail can be made with rum, vodka, or tequila. Simply pull together your favorite libation, a few sprigs of mint, grab some blackberries from the freezer, blend, and serve for a cooling beverage on a hot day.

Bourbon Smash next to a basket of citrus

Bourbon Smash

A riff on a classic, Knight’s bourbon smash features the sweetness of frozen blueberries and peaches to cut the underlying oaky flavors of bourbon. The secret here is adding a touch of coconut oil to create a creamier texture and add a hint of tropical flavors. Pair with fresh squeezed orange juice for a bright and balanced frozen cocktail.

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