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In vino veritas: where and what I will be drinking this summer

Props to River Grille
Props to River Grille
Connie Rice

We seem to finally have summer here in the Daytona area, although it has taken a bit longer than usual. A few unexpected chilly nights lately, but I think we are back on track for beach weather and warm sultry nights again. One of my favorite things to do this time of year is sit outside and enjoy a delicious cocktail or three. I do it very responsibly of course, never drinking and driving, as well as trying to keep my mouth shut as there is that good old Latin saying in vino veritas (in wine there is truth), which has been known to cause a few problems for all of us on occasion.

Here are the hot spots and especially delicious drinks I would recommend:

Houligan's at Destination Daytona - Ormond Beach: I love a good Appletini (tastes like an apple Jolly Rancher candy in a martini glass) and the ones concocted at this fun sports bar with covered outdoor seating serve up the best I have sampled. I suggest having a few Appletinis then heading over to Asylum Tattoo Studio next door and get that tattoo you have always wanted. Rumor has it a bit of a buzz makes the process hurt a little less!

The Golden Lion - Flagler Beach: My latest discovery is the absolutely fabulous Strawberry Mojitos at this highly rated beach bar. Just like the best Mojito you ever had, but with fresh strawberries muddled up in the glass too. Did you know the original name for the Mojito was the El Draque and it was created by Sir Francis Drake circa 1580? "The Dragon" invented this heavenly drink to encourage his ship's crew to get the lime juice they needed to avoid scurvy.

RiverGrille on the Tomoka - Ormond Beach: The atmosphere at this restaurant on the lovely Tomoka River simply cannot be beat. The view is peaceful and picturesque, and the frozen Mango Margaritas are beyond compare. While dining there recently and enjoying my share of paradise in a glass, the tables all around us were inspired to ask their servers "What is THAT she is drinking over there?" and by the time we left, three more diners had ordered one as well.

Have a great summer, everyone! Please feel free to suggest your favorite local spot and drink below.