I make most of my lemonade alcohol-free but I slipped in some bourbon last year and tried Kentucky Lemonade. It was sublime. Lemonade, mint, and American whiskey go well together and that recipe made a very sweet, bubbly spiked lemonade. This summer I’m trying out a similar recipe, a Bourbon Rosemary Cocktail. It’s also a sparkling lemonade made with bourbon and fresh herbs. However, it’s made with rosemary and club soda instead of mint and ginger ale. I’m imagining a more mellow flavor that’s not as sweet and more focused on the bourbon and herbs. Let’s find out!
This bourbon rosemary cocktail is the perfect cocktail to enjoy while sitting around a fireplace with family and friends.
This Bourbon Rosemary Cocktail doesn’t have tons of ingredients, and they were all easy to find. My regular grocery store had the rosemary, lemons, and sparkling water. A quick trip to my local grocery store for the bourbon, and my shopping trip was done. I had the sugar, water, ice, and maple syrup at home.
This cocktail recipe has 2 parts: the simple syrup and the actual cocktail. Most of the “work” is making the Rosemary Simple Syrup, but it’s a very easy recipe that doesn’t take long. Here’s how I spent my time:
- 16 minutes to make the simple syrup
- 5 minutes for the simple syrup to cool
- 6 minutes to make and garnish the cocktail
- 27 minutes total
The recipe lists a total time of 15 minutes, and my time was almost double that. The simple syrup portion alone calls for simmering for 10 minutes plus 5 minutes to cool. It looks like the author forgot to allow additional time to prep the syrup and make the cocktail.
Rosemary Simple Syrup
I always keep plain simple syrup in my refrigerator, so I’m a pro at making it. It’s always at the ready. I also like making infused simple syrup for cocktails, but they force me to plan ahead. Most need to steep overnight to infuse the flavor, but that wasn’t the case with this recipe.
This Rosemary Simple Syrup recipe is ready to use in minutes and makes just enough for this recipe. I consider that a big plus since there’s no chance of extra going to waste. The notes to say to store extra in the refrigerator, so it’s an option if you make more.
The instructions for the simple syrup were easy enough to follow, and I really didn’t have any problems. Just heat the water and sugar in a saucepan, stir, and add the rosemary sprigs. Then let everything simmer for a few minutes, strain, cool, and use in the cocktails.
The only minor problem I had was measuring the rosemary. Getting the fresh sprigs to stay in a measuring cup was challenging, to say the least. I managed to more or less fit 4 sprigs, so that’s what I went with.
Making the Bourbon Rosemary Cocktail
I was so pleased that the Rosemary Simple Syrup could be used immediately after I made it! It was the standard process for a shaken cocktail: add ice to a cocktail shaker, add the ingredients, shake well. Then pour over ice, top with sparkling water, and add a sprig of rosemary to garnish.
Okay, that last part was something I did to pretty up the frinks for photos, but it only took a second to do. I suppose I could have put a touch more effort in and added a slice of lemon, but it didn’t occur to me.
The recipe also doesn’t specify what type of glass to use. The photo looks like a rocks glass, so that’s what I used too. Mine are 11.5 ounces, and this recipe made 2 cocktails.