On the last of the good, hot evenings, our collective grip on summer tends to be fierce. So the host has two imperatives: make sure everyone's drink is icy cold and don't, for the love of Murgatroyd, water it down. The solution is to freeze some garnish in a tasty base – mint leaves in lime juice, for example – to preserve the punch of your mojitos and margaritas. You can extend this trick to Caesars (by freezing Clamato in your ice-cube tray) or any other summery drink. It works for iced coffee, too, with frozen coffee cubes. But in its waning days of use, the patio definitely deserves something stronger. – Michael Tong
Chef Michael Tong is the owner of Toronto's Sublime Catering.