If you plan on lounging poolside this summer, you’re going to need a complementary drink to kick back with. Enter this bourbon-rich, orange-infused smash cocktail. The term “smash” comes with a long, storied history. At its simplest, smashes are cocktails formed with a liquor base and mixed with fresh, seasonal fruits, all smashed together over ice. The general rule of thumb to making an official smash cocktail is to always use crushed ice. If you’ve ever had a mint julep, one of the South’s most popular beverages, particularly during Kentucky Derby season, then you’ve already experienced the taste of a smash. Now that we’ve got the history out of the way, let’s get started on how to mix this crisp and refreshing cocktail. It all begins with oranges—fresh orange juice and orange wedges, to be more exact. Again, a smash cocktail should contain a seasonal fruit, and with summer looming, oranges absolutely fit the bill. Our basil-flavored syrup offers a sweet and aromatic balance to citrusy oranges, which are used as both a garnish and juice in this recipe for added zestiness. Yet, the best way to show off the bourbon and get the most flavor out of this cocktail is by muddling all the ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled with ice. Next, you’ll cover with a lid and shake until chilled for about 15 seconds. Strain into your glass of choice—just don’t forget to fill it with crushed ice for the ultimate summer sip. Finally, garnish with an orange slice and basil sprig.
Muddle bourbon, orange juice, Basil Simple Syrup, and orange wedges in a cocktail shaker to release flavors. Fill shaker with ice. Cover with lid, and shake vigorously until thoroughly chilled, about 15 seconds. Strain mixture into a highball glass filled with crushed ice. Garnish with orange slice and basil sprig.