Frozen Gin Cocktails to Beat the Heat This Summer

This summer’s set to be a hot one, so we’re teaming up with NOLET’S Gin to share our favorite cocktails for staying cool: slushy frozen drinks starring NOLET’S Silver Gin, a floral and fruit-forward gin crafted with real botanicals and over 330 years o…

This summer's set to be a hot one, so we're teaming up with NOLET'S Gin to share our favorite cocktails for staying cool: slushy frozen drinks starring NOLET'S Silver Gin, a floral and fruit-forward gin crafted with real botanicals and over 330 years of Nolet family experience.


There are few things I love more during the summer than a frozen cocktail—instantly cooling, and a breeze to batch up for a barbecue or poolside get-together. Margaritas, daiquiris, frosé, and the like might be the first drinks you think of when getting ready to fire up the blender this season, but you can turn almost any sip into a slushy.

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Gin Basil Smash

Here’s the perfect summer cocktail for when herbs abound: the Gin Basil Smash! Use your basil plant for this refreshing…

A Couple Cooks – Recipes worth repeating.

Here’s the perfect summer cocktail for when herbs abound: the Gin Basil Smash! Use your basil plant for this refreshing and herbaceous drink.

Gin basil smash

Got basil? Love gin? Here’s the ideal drink for you: the Gin Basil Smash! This modern spin on the Whiskey Smash is light and herbaceous, pairing peppery basil with botanical gin. If there’s summer in a cocktail glass, this is it! We love drinking our herbs all season long, and this new addition to our summer cocktails perfectly captures that feeling of fresh cut grass between your toes and sticky melted popsicle fingers. (At least, we think so!)

What’s in a Gin Basil Smash?

The Gin Basil Smash is a cocktail made with gin, basil and fresh lemon juice, a riff on the popular Whiskey Smash. First published as a recipe in 1887, the Whiskey Smash pairs lemon, mint, sugar and crushed ice as a refreshing summer cocktail. Substitute in basil and gin, and you’ve got this drink.

This gin variation was invented in 2008 by a man named Jörg Meyer, owner of the Germany bar Bar Le Lion, who posted the recipe on his website. It became an international success and is now made around the world. (Read more about the origin story.) Here’s what you need to make a Gin Basil Smash:

  • Gin
  • Basil leaves
  • Lemon juice
  • Simple syrup
Gin basil smash

How to muddle basil

The best time to make a Gin Basil Smash? The summer, when you have a big pot of bright green basil! You’ll need 8 to 10 basil leaves per drink, so it’s more economical to go the home-grown route. The cocktail skill we’ll use to extract that delicious, peppery flavor is called muddling. Muddling is gently mashing herbs to release their juices, which helps the flavors incorporate into drinks.

When it comes to herbs, you’ll want to have a gentle touch when muddling. Here’s how to muddle herbs, including basil:

  • Place the basil leaves in the bottom of a cocktail shaker. If you don’t have one, you can use a large metal cup or bowl.
  • With a wooden cocktail muddler or unfinished wooden spoon, gently mash the mint a few times to release the juices. Do not mash the basil with lots of force! The key to muddling is a light touch.

Basil is so easy to grow at home! Go to How to Grow Basil and How to Harvest Basil for more.

Best gin to use

Any type of gin works for a Gin Basil Smash! Try to find a mid-priced bottle, since price is usually indicative of quality when it comes to spirits. Here are a few tips for buying gin:

  • Every brand is different. There’s a wide range of botanical flavors in different brands of gin. Experiment to find your favorite!
  • Malfy gin is a good option: it has a nice balance of flavors.
  • Steer away from Tanqueray gin: in our opinion, it’s a little too floral.
Gin basil smash

More basil cocktails & mint cocktails

There are so many ways to use fresh herbs in cocktails in the summer! Here are a few more ideas:

When to serve a Gin Basil Smash

This refreshing cocktail is perfect for summer when basil abounds, but of course it works year round. Try it as a:

  • Summer cocktail
  • Happy hour drink
  • Dinner party drink
  • Late night drinks drink
  • Guys or girls night drink
  • Cocktail hour drink
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Gin basil smash

Gin Basil Smash


  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Here’s the perfect summer cocktail for when herbs abound: the Gin Basil Smash! Use your basil plant for this refreshing and herbaceous drink.


Ingredients

  • 8 to 10 large basil leaves, plus more for garnish
  • 2 ½ ounces* gin
  • ¾ ounce lemon juice
  • ¾ ounce simple syrup
  • Ice, for serving (try clear ice)

Instructions

  1. Place the basil leaves in a cocktail shaker and muddle them (gently mash).
  2. Add the gin, lemon juice and simple syrup to the cocktail shaker. Add 2 handfuls ice and shake until cold.
  3. Strain the drink into an ice-filled lowball glass. If desired, top with splash of soda water. Garnish with additional basil leaves.

Notes

*To convert to tablespoons, 1 ounce = 2 tablespoons. 

  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Shaken
  • Cuisine: Cocktails

Keywords: Gin basil smash

A Couple Cooks - Recipes worth repeating.

Drinking French Booksigning in Brooklyn, NY

  It’s been quite a year! While my 2020 book tour was upended by a global pandemic – who’d a thought we’d ever be saying things like that? – I can finally able to have an event. If you’re in New York City, I’ll be at Slope Cellars in Brooklyn on Sunday, May 9th from 2 to 3:30pm signing copies of Drinking French. FINALLY! So…

 

It’s been quite a year! While my 2020 book tour was upended by a global pandemic – who’d a thought we’d ever be saying things like that? – I can finally able to have an event. If you’re in New York City, I’ll be at Slope Cellars in Brooklyn on Sunday, May 9th from 2 to 3:30pm signing copies of Drinking French. FINALLY! So stop by and get a personalized copy.

Slope Cellars is also proudly offering a Drinking French Bar Box featuring a selection of apéritifs and spirits so you can make some of my favorite drinks in the book. Included is a bottle of Citadelle gin from France, Dolin red vermouth made in Chambéry, the French alps, a bottle of small-batch Forthave spirits red bitter apéritif, and Old Forester Bottled-in-Bond rye, for making Boulevardier and Toronto cocktails from the book, as well as a signed copy of Drinking French. So you’re welcome to pick up a Drinking French Bar Box with a book included or just a personalized copy of the book.

See you then!

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Clover Club Cocktail

I’ll admit to being the kind of guy that likes a pink drink every now and then, but I don’t like to admit that I’m the kind of guy that buys raspberries in the winter. Writing cookbooks with deadlines that don’t always flow with the seasons, if I need a few cherries in the winter to test a recipe or a few cups of blueberries,…

I’ll admit to being the kind of guy that likes a pink drink every now and then, but I don’t like to admit that I’m the kind of guy that buys raspberries in the winter. Writing cookbooks with deadlines that don’t always flow with the seasons, if I need a few cherries in the winter to test a recipe or a few cups of blueberries, I’ll resort to frozen or, uh…”fresh” if I really have to get the job done. I used to look down on people that bought out-of-season fruit at the markets or grocery stores, or the ones who inspected every single piece of fruit on offer like it was a rare gem, until I realized they were all recipe developers or food stylists and they were just doing their jobs.

I’ll also admit after making this Clover Club cocktail, which has a dash of raspberry syrup added for color and flavor, perked me up this winter. Although vacation is off the table for a while, I felt like I was taking a little trip to somewhere exotic when I took that first ruby-color, raspberry-flavored sip. To be honest, it felt a bit illicit. And I loved it.

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Holiday Gift Idea! Drinking French Bar Boxes from Slope Cellars and K & L Wine Merchants

What better way to send off 2020, and kick off a brand new year (…which, fortunately, is just around the corner…) with a gift for yourself, or for someone special, of a Drinking French Bar Box! I’ve teamed up with two of my favorite spirit shops to offer specially-curated bar boxes with a selection of French spirits and apéritifs. And to sweeten the pot, for…

What better way to send off 2020, and kick off a brand new year (…which, fortunately, is just around the corner…) with a gift for yourself, or for someone special, of a Drinking French Bar Box! I’ve teamed up with two of my favorite spirit shops to offer specially-curated bar boxes with a selection of French spirits and apéritifs. And to sweeten the pot, for a limited time, each bar box includes a bookplate signed copy of Drinking French.

Slope Cellars wine and spirits shop in New York includes a bottle of Old Forester Bottled-in-Bond Rye, Forthave Red Apéritif Bitters (a small-batch red bitter apéritif, made in Brooklyn), a bottle of Citadelle gin, the first gin made in France, and a demi-bottle of Dolin sweet vermouth from the French alps, as well as a copy of Drinking French. With those bottles, you’ll be able to make several drinks in the book, including my favorite cocktails, the Boulevardier and the Americano, a low ABV apéritif that’s perfect for easy-going holiday sipping.

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Le Soleil cocktail

Thankfully, we are over that brief period of the year when the only fruits at the market are apples and pears, with a few persimmons and quince thrown in for good measure. I like those fruits very much but as winter descends and the skies turn grey (and stay that way) for the next few months, nothing brightens things up like a bowl of tangerines…

Thankfully, we are over that brief period of the year when the only fruits at the market are apples and pears, with a few persimmons and quince thrown in for good measure. I like those fruits very much but as winter descends and the skies turn grey (and stay that way) for the next few months, nothing brightens things up like a bowl of tangerines in my kitchen.

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Coup de Roulis cocktail

This rosy coup holds a drink from Cocktails de Paris, a book of cocktail recipes from Paris, published in 1929. (It’s available to download* for free here.) I was attracted to it because it called for Cherry Rocher, a French liqueur produced by a distillery that was founded in 1704 and is still making it today. Coup de roulis translates to “strong blow,” referring to…

This rosy coup holds a drink from Cocktails de Paris, a book of cocktail recipes from Paris, published in 1929. (It’s available to download* for free here.) I was attracted to it because it called for Cherry Rocher, a French liqueur produced by a distillery that was founded in 1704 and is still making it today. Coup de roulis translates to “strong blow,” referring to the strong sway or roll of a boat. My guess is that maybe it got its name because it has four different spirits in it? No matter, I needed a strong drink last week when my apartment sprung a fuite d’eau, causing a flood.

The Paris cocktail book is an excursion back in time, as was the leak, harkening back to other, um…issues I’ve had with my apartment. In the pages, there are words used, such as Angustura (with an alternative spelling that may be from days of yore) and ‘focking,’ a term I’d never heard of either, and when I searched Google for “cocktail focking,” let’s just say most of the search results were adult-only…and I don’t mean in the cocktail department.

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Tom Collins Cocktail

Do you know Tom Collins? The cocktail? If not, you’ve been missing out. I used to serve Tom Collins way back when I was a bartender, and…

The post Tom Collins Cocktail appeared first on Cookie and Kate.

best tom collins cocktail recipe

Do you know Tom Collins? The cocktail? If not, you’ve been missing out. I used to serve Tom Collins way back when I was a bartender, and I believe this classic drink deserves some more attention.

Tom Collins cocktails taste like grown-up lemonade. They’re irresistibly citrusy, fizzy and refreshing, with herbal notes from the gin. While lemonade can be cloying, Tom Collins need not be too sweet—I like mine with just a splash of simple syrup to round out the flavors.

tom collins ingredients

If you enjoy a cold French 75 or Bee’s Knees, you’ll definitely enjoy a Tom Collins. They all share a similar flavor profile. Tom Collins are the perfect cocktails for hot summer afternoons, since they’re served over ice and full of hydrating club soda. I’ll always choose a Tom Collins over a gin and tonic.

To make a Tom Collins from scratch, you’ll need a few basic ingredients (gin, lemons, club soda, and sugar or honey), a cocktail shaker and plenty of ice. Add a fancy cocktail cherry if you really want to do it right. Cheers!

Continue to the recipe...

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Cherry Lime Gin and Tonic.

Fresh cherry gin and tonic, coming right up! This icy, refreshing, bubbly drink is going to be my cocktail of the summer. I’m in a major gin and tonic mood. Last week we ordered out from Morcilla and I got the gin and tonic kit. It comes with a squeeze bottle of their tonic syrup […]

The post Cherry Lime Gin and Tonic. appeared first on How Sweet Eats.

Fresh cherry gin and tonic, coming right up!

cherry lime gin and tonic

This icy, refreshing, bubbly drink is going to be my cocktail of the summer.

pitted bing cherries

I’m in a major gin and tonic mood.

Last week we ordered out from Morcilla and I got the gin and tonic kit. It comes with a squeeze bottle of their tonic syrup which I’m basically hoarding at this point. You squeeze the syrup into the gin over ice, then top it off with seltzer and a few aromatics. 

IT WAS SO GOOD.

cherry lime gin and tonic

I was convinced that I had to make tonic syrup. Yes. But I’m clueless, so I thought that tonic syrup was just, like, tonic water and sugar boiled into simple syrup. And that I would get the delicious syrup like we had from Morcilla. 

Welp. That is not correct. 

Tonic syrup is actually making tonic water, but better, because syrup. Once I looked at the ingredient list it just seemed too over the top for us right now in this mostly-still-quarantined situation. Plus, it also looks slightly tricky and like if you do it wrong, it could make you sick. YIKES.

So that was a bummer.

pouring tonic water into cherry gin and tonic

But I still had gin and tonics on the brain.

Specially, my fresh peach gin and tonic. This week is gorgeous! We’ve had really hot and sunny weather – it has been beautiful, and I thought it would be amazing to sip one on the patio. Peaches aren’t in season here yet, and while I could use frozen, I decided to grab the next best thing: fresh cherries.

Ooooooh yes. I wait all year for cherries! Love them. 

close up cherry lime gin and tonic

This “recipe” is easy. It’s refreshing. Tastes like heaven. 

I like to use a drop of cherry juice – you can use whatever kind of cherry juice you like. Use the syrup from a jar of luxardo cherries, the juice from a jar of maraschinos, or bottled black cherry juice. Any of it works, you just want a little extra cherrie flavor.

pouring tonic into cherry lime gin and tonic

And let’s be real, half the fun of this drink is eating the cherries once it’s gone. YEP.

cherry lime gin and tonic

Cherry Lime Gin and Tonic

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Cherry Lime Gin and Tonic

This cherry gin and tonic is loaded with fresh bing cherries, lots of fresh lime, a touch of cherry juice and your favorite tonic water!
Course Drinks
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 1 drink, is easily multiplied
Author How Sweet Eats

Ingredients

  • 4 or 5 bing cherries, pitted and sliced
  • 1 to 2 ounces freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 ounce cherry juice from a jar of cherries
  • 2 ounces gin
  • 4 ounces tonic water (Fever Tree is my fave!)
  • crushed ice
  • lime wedges for the glass

Instructions

  • Fill a glass with the cherries, lime wedges and crushed ice. Pour the lime juice and cherry juice over the ice. Pour the gin over the ice, then add the tonic. Stir a few times to combine. Serve immediately!

cherry lime gin and tonic

Ahhhh. Best ever.

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Lucien Gaudin Cocktail

Note: I’ll be making this cocktail today at 6pm CET (Noon ET, 9am PT) on my IG Live Apéro Hour on Instagram. To watch, head to my profile on my IG profile page at that time, and when the circle around my profile pic says “Live” – click on it to tune in. More info, as well as how to watch it in replay in…

Note: I’ll be making this cocktail today at 6pm CET (Noon ET, 9am PT) on my IG Live Apéro Hour on Instagram. To watch, head to my profile on my IG profile page at that time, and when the circle around my profile pic says “Live” – click on it to tune in. More info, as well as how to watch it in replay in my IGTV channel archives, is here.

The clever cocktail, seemingly another riff on the Negroni (like The Tunnel), is named after French fencing champion Lucien Gaudin, who won gold and silver medals in the Olympics during the 1920s. Other than that, I’ve never found any other information about it; who came up with it or why the cocktail is associated with a French fencer.

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