Basil Gimlet

In June I stumbled upon The New York Times’ Food and Wine Three-Ingredient Summer Cocktails. I knew I wanted to try them out, and since I just bought a bottle of gin not too long ago, the basil gimlet seemed perfect. My sisters thought so, too. We made quite a few … and had a great night.

For the best taste, use the freshest basil you can. Pull leaves from the basil plant in your garden or buy a live (in water) plant from the supermarket. Since it’s summer time and basil is in season, it’s the best time of year to make this drink.

Ingredients (Yield one drink)

5 large basil leaves

1 1/2 oz gin

3/4 oz lime juice

1/2 oz simple syrup

  • For simple syrup: Place 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water in a sauce pan. Bring to boil, reduce heat and stir two minutes until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, cool to room temperature, store in a tightly closed container in the refrigerator up to a month.


1. Put 4 basil leaves in a cocktail shaker (if you don’t have one, use a coffee thermos as a makeshift shaker … hey, I’m in college, right? You expect me to own a cocktail shaker?). Press the leaves gently with a wooden spoon. Add the gin, lime juice and simple syrup.

2. Fill with ice, shake vigorously and strain into a chilled coupe or other small glass. Garnish with the remaining basil leaf. Enjoy!

Tags: , , , , ,

Categories: Drink, Season: Summer


Became a voracious, unapologetic bookworm in 4th grade after reading the first three Harry Potter books. Have a thing for dystopias, young adult novels, classic literature and funny memoirs (re: Mindy Kaling / Tina Fey). English and journalism geek, media and pop culture critic, food writer and blogger, editor of an entertainment magazine. Hobbies include: my Netflix account, cooking, gardening, music, art and hiking.


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One Comment on “Basil Gimlet”

  1. 08/15/2011 at 8:48 pm #

    Sounds fascinating, I may have to give this a try! 🙂

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