Thomas J. Story
Total Time
25 Mins
Makes 2

Move over, mint: Basil's spicy flavor puts a fresh spin on the traditional gimlet. Make the syrup before guests arrive—it keeps up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.

How to Make It

Step 1

Make basil syrup: In a large microwave-safe measuring cup, combine sugar, 3/4 cup water, and basil.

Step 2

Microwave on high until sugar dissolves, 3 to 4 minutes.

Step 3

Let basil steep in syrup 20 to 30 minutes, then strain (you'll have enough syrup for 4 drinks).

Step 4

Fill 2 highball glasses with ice. Into each glass, pour 3 tbsp. gin, 4 tbsp. basil syrup, and 2 tbsp. lime juice. Stir and serve, garnished with basil sprigs.

Step 5

Tip: Add lemon juice and chilled water to the leftover syrup and serve over ice for basil lemonade.

Ratings & Reviews

angela8beth's Review

April 18, 2010
Delicious, very sweet drink. Similar to a mojito -- not surprising given all the sugar and the fact that basil is in the mint family. I deviated from the recipe by not adding the basil until the syrup was hot and sugar dissolved (b/c almost every other recipe I've used that involves syrup has directed that additions be made only after the syrup's hot and set), and then let it sit for a good 30 minutes. However, in the end I was wishing for more basil flavor! So next time I will either follow the recipe and add the basil right away :), and/or I will leave the basil steeping in the syrup in the fridge longer so it has more time to infuse, then strain it just before mixing the drinks.

kathyb825's Review

May 13, 2010
I made these all last summer and now that the days are getting longer and warmer - I can't wait to whip up another batch. These were a hit with all my guests and I gave out the recipe each and every time.

kaygilbert's Review

July 21, 2009
I changed the portions to 4tbs gin and 3tbs simple syrup and still thought it was too sweet. I would try a 2 to 1 ratio of the gin to simple syrup, 4tbs gin to 2tbs syrup. Loved the basil scent. I think you need to use a high quality gin, such as Bombay Sapphire

Angelawhocooks's Review

June 22, 2009
Delicious. I doubled the recipe, put it in a small pitcher, set out the ice bucket and let my guests help themselves. People were a little hesitant when they heard it was a cocktail using basil but each one was won over after the first sip. Everyone loved them and asked for the recipe. Serve at your next summer gathering!

SaraBusse's Review

May 11, 2009
I have served this three times to rave review. The only change I made is adding a splash of club soda which just makes it a little lighter tasting. Yummm-O!

rgardner2's Review

March 25, 2009
Yum! I decressed the syrup to 3 TBSP (I thought it was a little to sweet) and topped the glass off with a little tonic water. I liked this drink a lot and will make this one again.