After Derek Brown (@betterdrinking) tweeted about making a Gin Basil Smash using fresh basil from his garden, my curiosity was piqued. It turns out that this fresh herbal cocktail is the perfect way to kick off the start of summer. With 3 ounces of gin, for me its also a great way to unwind after a long day of Bar exam studying. Created in 2008 by Jörg Meyer of Le Lion in Hamburg, Germany, this drink ended up garnering “Best New Cocktail” at Tales of the Cocktail. Below, Jörg explains how to make a proper Gin Basil Smash.
I’ve adapted the original recipe for American measurements below. And if you are feeling experimental, I’d also suggest following Jörg’s advice and putting a little bit of the sugar and lemon mix on the back of your hand to sample the proportions. You can then add sugar or sour as needed. Trust your own instincts and find the perfect balance for your tastes.
Gin Basil Smash (adapted from Ginologist)
3 ounces gin (Tanqueray)
2/3 ounces simple syrup
1 1/2 ounces fresh lemon juice
5-7 basil leaves
Muddle basil vigorously with lemon juice and simple syrup, shake all ingredients and double-strain on fresh ice cubes into an old fashioned glass. Garnish with fresh basil.
First of all, this is a great looking drink. The greenish hue imparted by the basil leaves is quite appetizing. The taste is both simple and complex. A touch of sweetness, a touch of sour, and a subtle but spicy herbal nose and finish, all very well balanced. A worthwhile summer sipper, perfect for porches and patios. Enjoy.