Don't judge me.
The Scene: Nicole's house, for a BBQ and visit with her family.
The mood: Erm… jovial? Let's go with jovial.
Nicole and I are both big lovers of cocktails and let's be honest, many friendships have flourished on far more shaky foundations than one that has been built on a mutual love of a good mixed drink.
Her husband Duane is also an excellent bartender who loves mixing up delicious new concoctions whenever he has the opportunity. The cocktail of choice for this dinner was a Gin Basil smash, perfectly suited to the sultry warm summer evening.
That particular evening Nicole and I sat out on her deck, sipping our Gin Basil Smashes and chatting, waiting until it was time to start supper. When the time came to start prepping the her Best of Bridge Stacked Pizza we headed on in to the kitchen.
When we went to start dinner prep in the kitchen (ok fine, Nicole went to start the prep and I took my almost-finished gin smash-#2 of the evening-with me and leaned on the counter to watch her) I wondered why the heck I felt so flushed.
Phew. That kitchen was hot, or at least it must have been since my cheeks were flushed a bright pink. I patted my cheek, felt the world tilt justateensybit and thought…hmm…
“Hey Nicole” I said, between the final sips of my second gin smash in 45 minutes ” What exactly is in these drinks?”
“Hey Duane!” she yelled out to him as he BBQ'd up the pork ” What's in those gin smashes?”
Duane came in, wiped his hands clean from the BBQ and said:
“Lemon juice, simple syrup and 4 shots of gin.”
When we collectively gathered our jaws off the floor and stopped laughing, Nicole and I might have give him a hard time about how he should have warned us that he was handing out cocktails that had four ounces of hard liquor in them.
Cocktails with four ounces of hard liquor, I might add, that we were drinking like iced tea on a hot summer's day.
In truth, it's a good thing that I inherited some mighty fine drinking abilities from my Ukrainian and Russian ancestors and that eight ounces of hard liquor in less than an hour didn't faze me past some flushed cheeks and a little tilt, however you might want to warn your guests that this is a mighty fine sipping drink that packs a powerful punch!
Most gin recipes have only two ounces in them and yes, feel free to adjust this if you want. The thing is…these are seriously delicious with four ounces. There is something just right about the ratio going on in this drink. You could split in half entirely to make a single gin smash if you wanted, but I suspect that it will go down just as smooth and as fast as this one did.
This drink shouldn't be reserved to the summertime either, in fact, I'm pretty much a citrus cocktail lover year-round. The savory twist in this makes it perfect for your holiday gathering in fact.
I would also add that you shouldn't be scared of the basil in the recipe, it's one heck of a delicious cocktail! I've had a lot of people wrinkle up their nose at both gin and basil and I've learned that if you haven't had either of those in a GOOD drink, then that's the problem. This is a spectacular gin drink and I have been converted over to the dark side of loving gin, all thanks to this drink.
Happy drinking! (that always sounds so wrong, but really, what else do I write here?)
For those who asked what a muddler is, this is the exact one I use! You can pick it up on Amazon for cheap!
For my Canadian readers:
For my US readers:
- 10 leaves fresh basil2 ounces simple syrup2 ounces lemon juice4 ounces good quality ginice cubes
Combine basil leaves, simple syrup and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker.Crush the basil till bruised with a muddler, which will release the oils. The juice might start to turn green, this is ok!Pour in the gin and ice cubes, place lid on top of the shaker.Shake the container until the outside of the cocktail shaker is freezing cold.This is how you know the drink is cold enough!Strain into a tall cocktail glass, add additional ice to the top and enjoy!