Fresh Tangerine Juice and Basil – A Bourbon Cocktail

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A great combo of citrus and herb, this Tangerine Juice cocktail hits the spot with tangerine and basil!



We recently made a batch of basil infused simple syrup after having a bunch of leftover basil after a night of Italian cooking. We love using herb infused syrups to layer in flavor and sweetness, and when we can we use the fresh herbs from our garden to make really delicious syrups.




Tangerine Drink

By making these syrups, we can keep those fresh flavors of summer all thru the cold months! We had a pair of tangerines that we had planned on using for a cocktail, and with this great herbal basil syrup in hand, we decided to pair the two up with a great rich bourbon to make a very great sipping cocktail.



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Rocks Glasses / Square Ice Cubes / Juicer / Citrus Press



We used the 100 proof Knob Creek Small Batch Bourbon, the higher proof helping to temper the sweetness of the citrus and basil syrup. The Knob Creek Small Batch has a nice toasty oak and nuttiness and hints of spice similar to a rye whiskey really pops with the brightness of the tangerine juice.






We think this cocktail would do really well with a spicy rye whiskey as well should you not have the Knob Creek.







The bright citrus of the tangerine juice is sweet and tangy, the acid of the helping to pull out warm notes of chocolate and vanilla from the bourbon. The basil syrup adds a herbal freshness that refreshes your palate.




We recommend garnishing the drink with a peel of tangerine, first expressing the oils from the skin into the glass, then wiping the rim of the glass with the peel. This will perfume the glass and cocktail with tangerine oil, making the Tangerine Basil a full sensory experience. Perfect for sipping on the porch on a warm spring afternoon, we hope you will give this tangerine and basil cocktail a try!






Like this recipe? Try these below, too!

Tangerine Frozen Negroni - Negroni Week Campari Cocktail

Grilled Tangerine Frozen Negroni Cocktail



Blackberry Tangerine Vodka Tonic Cocktail

Blackberry and Tangerine Vodka Tonic




Yield: 1

Tangerine Basil - A Bourbon Cocktail

Prep Time: 3 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 6 minutes

A citrus juice and bourbon combination that are accompanied by the herbal taste of basil.


Basil Simple Syrup

  • 1 cup packed whole basil leaves
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar

Tangerine Basil Cocktail


For the Cocktail

Muddle sugar with juice, bitters and basil syrup until the sugar is dissolved in a shaker.

Mix in bourbon.

Pour into rocks glass over ice.

Garnish with tangerine peel or basil leaves (or both!)


For the Basil Simple Syrup

Place the sugar and water into a small saucepan.

Bring the water to a boil and ensure all sugar is dissolved.

Take off the heat and steep basil leaves in the water for 15 minutes or until cool.

Strain into a clean glass jar and refrigerate.


If you want to extend the life of the syrup, add a splash of vodka or Everclear to it, to help preserve it.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 217 Total Fat: 0g Saturated Fat: 0g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 0mg Sodium: 3mg Carbohydrates: 23.4g Fiber: 0.4g Sugar: 23g Protein: 0.4g


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29 thoughts on “Fresh Tangerine Juice and Basil – A Bourbon Cocktail

  1. This looks amazing! I love the idea of adding herbs to a cocktail. Adding it to our list of drinks to try!

  2. I was invited to a dinner party by a foodie. Last time I was there, I forgot a cruet of simple syrup. She made me some basil simple syrup and gave me a cocktail challenge. It’s on!!!

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