Sometimes I want a cocktail that’s on the savory side, but don’t quite feel up to tackling a meal-sized bloody mary. That’s where this Green Gimlet comes in.
And for those wondering if that near radioactive green hue is the product of food coloring: nope! It’s alllll natural – a combination of lime juice, basil simple syrup and celery juice.
…And gin. Of course gin.
I think my fascination with the lighter side of savory drinks was sparked by a cocktail I had last year at Wayfare Tavern. It was called the Urban Garden and it was out of control. Radish, cucumber, fresh herbs, lemon – it really is a garden in a glass.
When I set out to create this cocktail, celery was the first thing on my mind. This could have something to do with my deep and eternal love for all things celery: root, stalk, leaf, seed, salt, and now juice! In fact, a celery salad may or may not be the very next post you see on this blog.
(It will be.)
Next up in the juicing process: lime! It is a gimlet after all; we’ve got to represent the lime.
The limes I used when I shot this were being very stingy with their juice. If you don’t have a juicer, my favorite trick is to jam a fork into the flesh of a lime half and twist the lime and fork in opposite directions. That lime won’t stand a chance at holding on to its juice.
Basil is a long-time hero of many cocktails, both sweet and savory. It’s herbaceous and peppery punch is welcome at any party of mine. In this drink I use a basil simple syrup, as well as fresh basil in the cocktail shaker.
This is the cocktail I wanna be sipping on a porch on a lazy summer day while some meat is cooking on a grill.
I need to get some friends that have a porch. And a grill.
- 1/2 ounce lime juice
- 2 basil leaves
- 2 ounces gin
- 1 1/2 ounces celery juice*
- 1/2 ounce basil simple syrup (recipe below)
- celery and basil leaves, for garnish
- Muddle the basil leaves and lime juice in a cocktail shaker. Fill the shaker with ice and add gin, celery juice and simple syrup. Shake vigorously for several seconds and strain into a chilled glass. Garnish with celery leaves and basil.
*For celery juice without a juicer: Blend stalks of celery with a splash of water in a blender until pureed. Press the mixture through a fine mesh strainer and discard the pulp.
Basil Simple Syrup
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large stems of basil with leaves
- In a small pot over medium heat, warm the water and sugar, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is dissolved and it just comes to a simmer. Once at a simmer, remove from the heat, add the basil and stir. Let the basil steep in the syrup as it cools, then strain.