An ice-cold drink is as important to a summer party as the burgers and potato salad. How to keep your drinks cold? When filling your cooler, put beverages in first, then a layer of ice–never the other way around. Repeat until full. Need it cold quick? Add a pitcher of water or a handful of salt to create an icy bath. Here are six coolers to keep your drinks–and more–cool all summer long.
Pictured above from top, clockwise:
This 2-in-1 combo is indispensable for itinerant mixologists: The thermos was designed for coffee, but it works smashingly for Margaritas.
Stanley lunchbox, 7.7 qt., and thermos, $65; shopstanley-pmi.com
2. A Day at the Beach
Tiny and light, cheap and cheerful, this picnic essential ensures the fruit salad–and all the other refreshments–stays cold.
Rubbermaid personal cooler, 10 qt., $15; amazon.com
3. Heirloom Variety
With its sturdy latch and stainless-steel handles, the cherry-red Coleman is an American classic you’ll keep for life.
Coleman Steel Belted cooler, 54 qt., $150; coleman.com
4. The Bigger Chill
This massive cooler hasn’t met six 12-packs–or a case of rose or Sauvignon Blanc or bubbly–it couldn’t handle.
Rubbermaid Gott Marine cooler, 102 qt., $100; rubbermaid.com
5. Deep Freeze
To fishermen, the 2″ -thick insulated walls of this cooler mean the catch stays fresh. To you, they mean ice-cold drinks for days.
Yeti Tundra, 35 qt., $260; yeticoolers.com
6. Vintage Cool
Clear a spot next to your pool chaise for this retro-style cooler so you can keep your favorite soft drinks within reach.
Picnic cooler, 11 qt., $99; retrometalchairs.com