I am not a girl who enjoys super sweet cocktails. I particularly lose all interest in very sugary drinks when the temperatures climb to their highest at this time of the year. I prefer my summer cocktails to be light and refreshing with just a hint of sweetness. I found this recipe while perusing one of my favorite cooking blogs, Smitten Kitchen, and of course I had to try it out.
If your saying to yourself you are not a gin drinker, I have to tell you I am not much of a gin fan myself. What I have found however, is that with it’s refreshing hint of citrus and cool juniper, given the right mixings, gin is hands down one of the best spirits for a summer cocktail. So if you find yourself reading this thinking no way I hate gin, I urge you to give gin another try. If your absolutely still opposed to the idea the below recipe can easily be substituted with vodka or tequila.
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen
Makes 2 Tall Drinks
½ cup gin of choice (Hendrick’s is my go to)
¼ cup of fresh lime juice
¼ cup basil simple syrup (recipe below)
¼ cup of fresh blackberries
Seltzer water or club soda
Basil leaves (for garnish)
Purée blackberries and simple syrup in a blender or food processor until as liquefied as possible.
Strain purée through a fine-mesh sieve or tea strainer into two tall glasses; discard seeds in sieve.
Divide gin and lime juice between glasses and stir to combine. Add ice to glasses then top each with soda and a sprig of basil.
Basil Simple Syrup
Makes enough for 8 drinks
1 cup of water
1 cup of sugar
1 cup of loosely packed basil leaves
Remove the leaves from the stems, setting aside leaves for garnish
Combine 1 cup of water with 1 cup of sugar and bring to a boil. Remove from heat.
Add about a cup of very loosely packed basil to the sugar and water and allow to steep for 15 minuets.