SO – I’m calling this a cucumber-mint gin fizz, but really, there’s wayyy more going on with this cocktail. It’s a spin on the gin fizz that I first discovered at a bar in San Francisco and immediately set out to replicate, and it’s one of those drinks that surprises you with how good it tastes. Granted, the cucumber-mint combo is all fine and dandy, but then you throw basil and elderflower liqueur into the mix and, if you’re anything like me, things start to get dicey. Like, basil? And flowery flavors? Mmmm… I don’t know… BUT, I promise you, it works like magic.
This is the kind of cocktail that screams summer – AKA – crisp and refreshing to the max. There’s a cool cucumber background vibe going’ on livened up with fresh mint, basil, and lemon/lime to really pick up the flavors. Gin – despite it’s so-so reputation with some people (in my experience) – has that whole botanical essence that makes the perfect mix here while adding a solid little kick of something strong and boozy, and the elderflower blends right in there with its sweet, floral notes. Admittedly, this is probably a cocktail that will require a trip to the store before making – unless you take these things seriously and already have a well-stocked bar (in which case, KUDOS) – but it’s definitely worth it. In the process, you’ll probably find a few new things to experiment with too!
Now, it’s almost Friday you know…let’s drink to that!!
A crisp, refreshing spin on the gin fizz with an added hint of basil and elderflower liqueur.
- 3/4 ounce freshly-squeezed lemon or lime juice*
- 3 slices cucumber
- 7 spearmint leaves
- 4 basil leaves
- 2 ounces gin
- 1 1/2 ounces elderflower liqueur
- cucumber twist, for garnish
- 3 ounces dry cucumber soda
- fresh mint, for garnish
- Combine lemon/lime juice, cucumber, mint, and basil in a cocktail shaker (in that order) and muddle. Add gin and elderflower liqeuer. Fill shaker with ice and shake well.
- Place cucumber twist in a highball glass and fill with ice. Strain mixture into glass and top off with cucumber soda. Garnish with mint and serve immediately.
*Lemon and lime will each add their own slight twist to the flavor of the cocktail, but both work well, so feel free to go with your preference or what you have on hand.