Combine vodka, lemonade and raspberry liqueur in a highball glass with ice, and add balls made from honeydew melon; that’s how you get the Honey Deuce. The cocktail was developed by Nick Mautone in 2006, who took inspiration from the fact that honeydew, once it’s been carved out with a baller, resembles nothing quite so much as scaled-down tennis balls.
And it turns out that tennis aficionados are embracing the drink. In 2022, 776,120 tennis enthusiasts attended the U.S. Open — and, as per a recent report in The Washington Post, 405,000 Honey Deuces were consumed at the sporting event in question. As summertime cocktails go, it’s not hard to see the appeal — it’s a relatively light drink, and the presence of ice and lemonade have a hydrating effect that makes it well-suited for sipping on a warm afternoon or evening.
Writing at the Post, Emily Heil delved further into the Honey Deuce’s origins and its growing appeal. Heil pointed out that the ease of making the drink makes it a good choice for home bartenders. “It couldn’t have been easier to assemble, since there was no shaking or stirring,” she wrote.
That quality has it roots in the cocktail’s origins. Mautone told Vogue in 2021 that, when he was commissioned to come up with the recipe, one of the considerations was that the drink could be made relatively quickly — which, from a concessions perspective, makes sense.
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Still, it’s not surprising to see that more and more US Open attendees are finding a tennis-themed cocktail of interest. And, as Heil pointed out, the cocktail doesn’t require too much work to assemble and is relatively low on ingredients — both ideal components for an easy, satisfying summer drink.