Food & Drink

DRINK RECIPE: Basil Bourbon

by Couch Sessions


Before bourbon takes its decline on the popularity scale, I figured I should at least give it a try. Very rarely am I taken by beverages these days. Quite honestly, drinking isn’t usually my thing [anymore] – maybe it’s because I feel I’ve had more than enough in my lifetime. In either case, about a month ago, I was out on a platonic first date with Jimmy and Jonathan of Greensinner and found the Basil Bourbon at James Street Gastro Pub. Lucky for me and you, they had all the ingredients listed so I could offer up this amazingness to the drink Gods. Making it was fairly easy; I think the trickiest part was learning to make the balsamic vinegar simple syrup.  I’m sipping it right know, which should give me a free pass on typos and missing ingredients, right?

James Street Gastro Pub’s Basil Bourbon

Balsamic Simple Syrup:

1 cup sugar
¾ cup water
¼ cup balsamic vinegar

2 TBSP Balsamic Simple Syrup
1 shot bourbon
1 Tbsp fresh Basil
1 lime
Ginger Beer

yields 1 drink, but make as many as you like


Short Toms Collins type glass
Small sauce pan


photo credit given to


Prepare balsamic simple syrup by placing liquid ingredients and sugar in a small sauce pan to reduce. Allow to simmer until the mixture just coats the back of a spoon and slips of slow like syrup. Allow to cool and transfer to glass or heat safe container to cool. Try not to reduce this mixture so much that when it coats the back of your spoon it is very thick and leaves a dark brown layer.

Slice the lime into wedges and place to the side.

At the bottom of a Toms Collins glass, place the 2 tbsps. of balsamic simple syrup. Rip the basil if it is in whole leaves so that it releases the oil and place this in the glass over the syrup. Fill the glass with ice a little above halfway. Pour the shot (or more) of Bourbon over the ice and top off with ginger beer and twist of lime to your taste.

You should see the various layers of the drink from the side of the glass – when ready to drink, stir together and…