I’m not really one for making cocktails at home. I’ll mix the occasional gin and tonic, and I’m not above blending a shot of rum into a smoothie or adding Bailey’s to my hot cocoa after a long day. But most of the time, my drink of choice at home is simple: a bottle of beer or a glass of wine. Easy to store and minimal prep.
But, after stocking up on my G&T supplies for a party and watching my patio basil plant go crazy, I decided it was time to experiment. I busted out the cocktail shaker, grabbed a spare lemon and a bunch of basil, and concocted what turned out to be a perfect summer cocktail: crisp, refreshing, not too sweet or strong while still imparting a pleasant, sustained buzz. Best enjoyed on the patio or out by the pool on an afternoon where you have nowhere to be and nothing to do.
Technically, this is a white lady cocktail with the addition of basil and tonic water. The tonic makes it lighter and easier to drink (for me, anyway) but you could omit it for a stronger, un-carbonated beverage. I’m using diet tonic here, so the nutrition facts will differ if you use regular.
- 2 oz gin
- 1 oz Cointreau
- juice of 1/2 a lemon
- 2.5 oz diet tonic water
- 5 basil leaves
- lemon slice
- Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add the gin, Cointreau and lemon juice. Shake until cold.
- Muddle three basil leaves in a glass. Add 2-3 ice cubes. Strain in the cocktail mixture. Top off with tonic water and stir.
- Garnish with lemon slice and additional basil.