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Thirsty Thursday

A seasonal variation of the gin basil smash

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Many of us have been looking for new hobbies during quarantine. I’ve picked up cocktail making, which has been entertaining but a little stressful on my wallet. 

One of my favorite drinks I’ve found is a gin basil smash. I found the recipe in Salvatore Calabrese’s “The Complete Home Bartender’s Guide: Tools, Ingredients, Techniques, & Recipes for the Perfect Drink.” It’s a great book, even for beginners, and I’d highly recommend it. 

Gin Basil Smash

Courtesy of Grace Harmon

This drink is a variant in that it uses lime instead of lemon and mint instead of basil. I’ll admit, I’m probably not the first to create this drink, but it’s still good. It’s refreshing and perfect for the intermittent spring days that have begun to arrive. A great basic gin brand is Gordon’s; it has enough of a juniper note and isn’t too expensive, I got a bottle for $10 plus tax at QFC. Mint is also in season.


  • 2 ounces of gin

  • 1 ounce of lime juice

  • ⅔ ounces of simple syrup or to your liking depending on how sweet you like your drinks.

  • One handful of mint leaves


You can muddle the mint in a shaker or simply put it in with the ice to get the juices going when you shake it. Combine the lime juice, gin, and simple syrup in your shaker, add ice, and shake to your liking depending on how diluted you’d like your drink. Pour in a glass, add a mint leaf for garnish, and enjoy.

Reach writer Grace Harmon at Twitter: @Grace_Viv

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