There’s nothing like summer in Minnesota, especially when it involves a Bootleg Cocktail. It’s the perfect way to quench your thirst on a hot summer day.Filled with citrus and mint, this Bootleg Cocktail can be made with gin, rum or vodka to please any of your summer guests!

There is something magical about summer in Minnesota. Blue skies, lakes, farmers markets and warm temperatures. It is such a beautiful time (minus the mosquitoes) that I find it difficult to stay inside when the sun is shining. After a busy day of activities, I look forward to relaxing on the patio before dinner. The kids play in the yard and my husband and I have a drink while dinner is on the grill. Pure bliss. One of our summertime favorite drinks is the Bootleg Cocktail. It is fresh, citrusy and the perfect way to use some of the abundant mint in my garden. If I could get everything to grow as well as my mint, my garden would rock! 

A Bootleg is a cocktail staple at any country club in Minnesota, but no one will give you the recipe. Not even a hint. You can guess at the ingredients: lemon, lime, mint, club soda….sounds simple, right? It is – once  you get the proportions down (which took us many enjoyable tries. No complaining here!) Like your drinks a little sweeter? Add a little more mix. Prefer them a little drier? Add more club soda or another splash of gin. Gin not your thing? Vodka and rum are great options. The Bootleg is a great way to serve the same drink to many people while being able to add a personal touch to suit their alcoholic tastes.

So bring on the patio party and make a batch of bootleg mix to soak up every last bit of time with friends and family. I know we are so ready to enjoy our oh-too-short summer. One of the best things about summer in Minnesota? It makes you forget winter pretty quickly. I’ll drink to that!

Make Ahead Tip: Don’t want to mess around with mixing drinks individually? Pour two parts Bootleg mix to one part gin, rum or vodka and mix in a pitcher. Pour over ice and add club soda when serving.

This Bootleg Cocktail can be made with gin, rum or vodka to please anyone at your party!

Yield: 6 ounces


A citrusy, minty Bootleg cocktail that can be made with gin, vodka or rum.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


Bootleg Mix:

  • 1 can lemonade concentrate
  • 1 can limeade concentrate
  • 1 cup packed mint plus additional for garnish

Bootleg Cocktail:

  • 1 1/2 ounces Gin (vodka or rum can also be used)
  • 3 ounces Bootleg mix
  • splash of club soda
  • Mint for garnish


To make the Bootleg Mix:

  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until mint is chopped finely. Pour into jar and refrigerate for at least 2 hours to let flavors develop. The chopped mint will rise to the top and it settles, I scoop most of it off before mixing the cocktails.

To make Bootleg Cocktail:

  1. Pour gin and Bootleg mix into low ball glass filled with ice. Top with club soda, stir and garnish with mint.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

6 ounces

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 1909 Total Fat: 1g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 108mg Carbohydrates: 428g Fiber: 1g Sugar: 298g Protein: 5g

This Bootleg Cocktail is a Minnesota summer favorite! Filled with citrus and mint you can't go wrong with this cocktail. Bonus: It works with gin, vodka or rum!