Cucumber Basil Cocktails

Posted on September 1, 2011


As one who has utilized the skin (face) revitalizing powers of cucumbers at a key moment in time–try the morning of my wedding–I can attest to the healing powers of this drink.

Best served with a friend, after yoga in the park, at the top of a tall building in Brooklyn overlooking the Manhattan skyline, while chatting about work, life, boys and oh so many other things that have since been forgotten.

The basil Cucumber cocktail we cannot forget.

It’s a good sign when the header for the recipe is “While lounging poolside”. Yes please.

  • 1 tbs. sugar
  • 1 tbs. hot water
  • 1 tsp. finely grated fresh ginger
  • One 3-inch piece of cucumber—peeled, seeded and diced, plus 1 slice for garnish
  • 3 basil leaves, 2 torn
  • 2 oz. gin
  • 1 tbs. fresh lime juice
  • Ice


  1. In a small bowl, dissolve the sugar in the hot water.
  2. Press the grated ginger through a fine strainer set over the bowl, releasing the juice.
  3. In a cocktail shaker, muddle the diced cucumber with the 2 torn basil leaves.
  4. Add the ginger syrup, gin, lime juice and a handful of ice.
  5. Shake well, then strain into a highball glass.
  6. Garnish the cocktail with the cucumber slice and the remaining whole basil leaf and serve.

This drink exceeded our expectations, and we tweaked the recipe in these important ways:

-Threw in way more basil, of the purple variety, because it’s more mellow in flavor and the color is more fun.

-Agave syrup rather than simple…because it’s cooler (pun intended) and easier

-More cucumber than they called for–after all, these are lush CSA cucumbers we are talking about

-Probably threw in more gin judging by how we judged all that happened after that moment, including the scary bug–found eating our sausage, cracker, rosemary and havarti spread…

Posted in: Cocktails, CSA