If you live in Chicago, make sure you order a gimlet at Matchbox. For everyone else, these are a pleasant alternative.
YOU WILL NEED
- fresh basil
- powdered sugar
- sugar syrup or superfine sugar
- muddler or wooden spoon
Moisten the rim of two highball glasses.
Sprinkle 1-2 T powdered sugar on a small plate and dredge the rim of the glass in the sugar. Set aside.
In a shaker, combine:
Zest of one lemon (peel a lemon using a vegetable peeler, being careful to just peel the top yellow layer, without the white pith)
4 fresh basil leaves
1 T sugar (preferably superfine)
Muddle together. If you don't have a muddler, use the handle of a wooden spoon to smash the basil and lemon zest into the sugar so that the essential oils are released.
Add to the shaker:
3-4 shots vodka
3-4 shots fresh squeezed lemon juice
6 ice cubes
Shake vigorously. Taste and adjust if necessary (I don't like anything to be too sweet - you may prefer yours with a bit more sugar than indicated here).
Add 4 ice cubes to each sugar-coated glass and strain prepared gimlets into each. Top with one fresh basil leaf and serve.