Local Drinks Cool Down Summer



PHOTO BY: Joel Schnell

PHOTO BY: Joel Schnell

Whether area residents or visiting guests need to cool off or cool their heels, local establishments offer plenty of refreshing beverage options to make summer less about venturing away from home and more about staying local. Partake in some homegrown specialty concoctions, many of them made with ingredients from just down the road.

J. Carver Distillery

From grain to glass—the distillery is opening its doors this summer for tours and tastings. Included in the tour, customers can sample up to three J. Carver products or a specialty cocktail created with its spirits. Guests can call or sign up online for tours; public tours are held on Fridays and Saturdays, and private tours can be scheduled on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. In addition to its gin and vodkas, J. Carver recently launched its very own grappa, made with leftover grape pomace (seeds, skin and stems) from Waconia wineries. Try this cocktail the next time you’re at the lake—or wish you were:

Lake Breeze

2 oz. J. Carver Lake House vodka
1/2 oz. lime juice
1 oz. grapefruit juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup

Serve on the rocks, and top with club soda and a wedge of lime.


2 oz. J. Carver Premium gin
1 oz. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 oz. thyme-infused simple syrup

Combine all ingredients in shaker with ice. Shake and strain. Serve in martini glass and garnish with a lemon twist and sprig of thyme.

(The Venetian features J. Carver Premium Gin from J. Carver Distillery.)

(The Venetian features J. Carver Premium Gin from J. Carver Distillery.)

Visit the website to discover which local restaurants use J. Carver spirits in their craft cocktails. 
1320 Mill Lane, Waconia; 952.442.2433

Special Tasting Room Hours for 4th of July Weekend:

Thursday, July 2:  12-6 pm

Friday, July 3:  12-6 pm

Saturday, July 4:  12-4 pm