Today's Beijing, however, is not a place for bicycles. The streets are so crowded with luxury cars that the few people who continue to pedal their way to work wind up taking over the sidewalks. If I want to explore, I walk for as long as I can, then duck into a café or a taxi for a blast of air-conditioning so strong it shocks the system. Still, the best evening solution for the heat remains a cold beverage, though now I prefer something with flavor, and preferably with gin. On my most recent trip to the city, I found just the thing: a light, cucumber-laden concoction called the New Airline, served at Atmosphere, the bar on the top floor of the tallest building in town, in the Shangri-la Hotel China World Summit Wing. The coolness of the cucumber and a dose of elderflower liqueur echo gin's floral notes, and there's a bit of heat from some fresh ginger, lending an almost spa-like effect. Fresh apple and a hint of lime round out the flavor, giving the drink depth, and to my delight, enough bite to satisfy my summer craving for chilled fruit.