Watch CBS News

Ask A San Francisco Expert: Fourth Of July Cocktail Recipes

We asked - and boy did we receive - an exciting list of the tastiest, most creative (and even healthiest) cocktail recipes to make for the 4th of July holiday. These recipes come from two renowned mixologists within the Bay Area whose passion for the craft of mixology is acutely apparent after sipping one of their magic potions of deliciousness. These bartenders are the cocktail wizards of the bay, and their flair for making the tastiest, high-quality drinks are what makes fans, and other bartenders, flock from near and far to sip up their concoctions of goodness.

Burritt Room (credit:

Josh Trabulsi
Bartender and Mixologist
Burritt Room & Tavern at the Mystic Hotel
417 Stockton St.
San Francisco, CA 94108
(415) 400-0561

When Josh began his career in Boston working for chain restaurants, he hadn't yet attained the sense of the artistry associated with crafting the finest drink mixes. Trabulsi only realized the true craft after working at the Beverage Alcohol Resource educational program. This program was lead by some of the most notable figures at the forefront of mixology. Josh brought his newfound knowledge to some famous Southern California hotels. Now, Trabulsi is bar manager and mixologist at the famous Charlie Palmer's Burritt Room & Tavern. He works daily at the BR, and is a master at making perfect cocktails. His favorite drinks are from the pre-prohibition era, where he has perfected the equations to make these classic drinks. The following drinks are Josh's recipe suggestions for tasty 4th of July cocktails.

Burritt Daiquiri
  • 2.5 oz. Clement Agricole VSOP
  • .75 oz. lime
  • .5 Grade A Maple Syrup


Shake and double strain into chilled stem glass. Garnish with lime wheel. According to Trabulsi, this is his favorite summertime drink. "We make a version here at Burritt Room, and nothing screams party time quite like rum."

Drunken Watermelon

  • 1/2 bottle of Fortaleza Reposado
  • 4 oz. Falernum (clove liqueur)
  • 4 oz. lime juice
  • 15 dashes Angostura Bitters


Mix all ingredients in a pitcher and slowly pour into half seedless watermelon that has been punctured several times by a fork. Garnish with lime wheels and grated cinnamon. "This large format drink is perfect for parties. There's nothing like scooping a spoonful of the drunken watermelon - it's cool, refreshing and has a kick on a warm summer day," says Josh.

Poquito Picante

  • 2 oz. Fortaleza Blanco
  • 1/2 oz. rich Turbinado simple syrup
  • 1/2 oz. Aperol
  • 3/4 lime
  • 5 dash chili tincture*

*Chop 2 Serrano chilies and soak in 6 oz. of Forres Park over proof rum.

Shake all ingredients and strain over a large ice cube. Garnish with sliced chili. Trabulsi says the invigorating spice has an exotic reputation and chili peppers stimulate endorphins (the brain's feel-good chemicals). "There's nothing like drinking a cocktail that makes you feel good!"

Rohini Moradi
Mixologist and Founder
San Francisco Bartending Academy
510 Brannan St.
San Francisco, CA 94107
(415) 295-5649

As one of the founders of the San Francisco Bartending Academy (SFBA), Moradi believes that if you're going to drink, you might as well make it healthy. Her philosophy doesn't typically follow the mixology trends and latest cocktail superstars. Rather, Rohini offers her own creative touch by using only simple, pure and organic ingredients in all of her cocktails. Many of her drinks contain a Stevia-based syrup called Roya SpiritTM. By adding this syrup, "Stevia helps the body process sugar, which essentially means it breaks down the alcohol you're consuming." Another plus with this main ingredient is that it contains zero calories. The SFBA holds classes in an actual bar with real alcohol, for students who want to learn from a world-class bartender. Here is your chance to obtain some of Rohini's favorite drink recipes to make for the 4th of July holiday.



Add all ingredients in cocktail tin, add ice and shake. Strain into cocktail glass. Garnish with a strawberry. Enjoy. This is a refreshing and festive cocktail.


Watermelon Iced T

  • 1 1/2 oz. Herradura reposado
  • 1 oz. Roya Spirit Syrup
  • Iced Earl Grey Tea
  • Watermelon


Cut watermelon in 2-inch squares. Fill Mason jar with watermelon. Add Herradura and Roya Spirit. Pack cocktail glass with crushed ice. Fill with iced tea. Garnish with watermelon, add strawberry and enjoy. Moradi chose this recipe because she feels this drink is refreshing, different, and perfect for a BBQ.



  • 1 1/2 oz. Bulleit Bourbon
  • 1 oz. Roya Spirit Vanilla Simple Syrup


Add ingredients in tin, add ice and shake. Strain into cocktail glass and enjoy. When asked why Rohini chose this cocktail, she said, "Why not celebrate with the most American spirit: bourbon. This cocktail is deceivingly refreshing."

Kelly Gullo is a freelance writer in San Francisco, CA. Kellys topics are about music and nightlife. Kelly has also written a variety of articles on health and dieting and topics related to the environment. Kelly has a degree in journalism and public relations from Ferris State University in Big Rapids, MI. Her work can be found at

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.