Strawberry Basil Negroni Smash

For me, the start of Summer means that it's strawberry season.

Ever since I was younger, I have loved to go strawberry picking. There's nothing like being outside in the sunshine picking fresh strawberries (plus eating a few along the way!)

Now that I'm older, I enjoy growing my own strawberries in the summer months (as long as I remember to water them) to be thrown into salads, on deserts, and of course, in cocktails!

The Negroni is the iconic italian cocktail most enjoyed as an aperitif (maybe with a cheese board and appies?). But, if you're like me, the Negroni can be enjoyed anytime - preferably on a small patio somewhere in Italy...

For this version, I wanted to make something a bit more refreshing so that it can be easily be enjoyed on a warm Summer afternoon.

Loaded with fresh orange juice and strawberries, this drink is topped with sparkling lemon soda which balances the bitterness of the gin and Campari.

The basil simple syrup adds a nice sweet and savory touch, which compliments the "smashed" strawberries.

And look at those lovely bubbles!

In this recipe, I used an Italian Lemon Soda. But, for an extra kick it is highly recommended that you top up your glass with some Prosecco instead!

This cocktail has everything: it's acidic, bitter, refreshing, fizzy, sweet, and is perfect for enjoying on a sunny Summer day!

Strawberry Basil Negroni Smash

Per Cocktail

1 oz Gin
1/2 oz Campari
1/2 oz Basil Simple Syrup
1/4 Orange + 1 thin slice for garnish
2-3 Strawberries
Orange Bitters
Lemon Soda*
1-2 Basil Leaves for garnish

In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, add gin, Campari, and basil simple syrup. Squeeze the juice of the orange into the shaker and shake well until combined. In a short glass, muddle strawberries until they are "smashed". Add 2-3 ice cubes to the glass and then pour in the contents of the shaker. I like to add my garnish of the orange slice and basil leaves into the cocktail and then add a few dashes of orange bitters before topping the glass with lemon soda.

*Top your glass with Prosecco instead of lemon soda if you're feeling extra fancy!

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