I love my window box of herbs and the little bit of colorful optimism it brings to an otherwise quiet ledge. If you have one, you know exactly what I’m talking about (and if you don’t, now’s the perfect time to make one!). My Thai basil, named Archie, has been an unofficial roommate for over a year now, gazing out of my window and desperately leaning towards the light. Despite how much I spoil him, he’s a dreamer.

And as much as I consider Archie a pet, sometimes I just can’t resist picking him for eating. Usually, a few leaves of Thai basil makes a great finishing touch on a bowl of soup or bad takeout, but I wanted to bring Archie along for cocktail hour. This aromatic drink is a more herbal take on the classic daiquiri. Instead of regular white sugar, this drink uses a richer honey syrup that stars some of that best friend buried in the window box.


½ cup honey
3 sprigs of Thai basil (around 12 small leaves)
Kosher salt
2 oz. white rum
1 oz. freshly squeezed lime juice (after squeezing, keep one half for muddling)
½ oz. freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
½ oz Orange Curacao (I used Pierre Ferrand Dry)
½ oz Thai Basil-Honey simple syrup
Lemon peel, for garnish

To make the syrup: In a small saucepan, bring a ¼ cup of water to nearly a boil. Stir in the honey and sprigs, increase the heat, and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds, watching so that the honey’s foam doesn’t rise up over the top. Remove from heat and let cool, around 30 minutes.

For the drink: In a cocktail shaker, muddle one half of the squeezed lime with a pinch of kosher salt. Fill the shaker with ice and add the white rum, lime juice, grapefruit juice, orange curacao, and simple syrup. Shake vigorously until condensation forms and tins are cold, about 30 seconds. Strain into a small coupe or rocks glass and garnish with the lemon peel.


CocktailTommy Werner