I am getting tired of seeking out weekend happy hour deals in order to enjoy fancy cocktails at an affordable price on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. After trying out a new bar in our neighborhood called the "Gin Joint", where they make homemade tonics and simple syrups, I decided this was something I could attempt at home. And it turns out that it's super easy. Simple syrup is just a cup of water and a cup of sugar. I decided to add a cup of blueberries to this concoction and came up with an amazing blueberry simple syrup that could be used to sweeten anything from Greek yogurt, to iced tea, to my personal favorite...your basic Gin Rickey cocktail.
In a small pot, bring 1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of water, and 1 cup of fresh blueberries to a boil. Let it simmer about 12 minutes and use a wooden spoon to mash the blueberries a bit as it simmers. Then strain out the blueberry skins (I reserved the skins and mixed them with my yogurt for an afternoon snack). Add the juice from half a lemon to the mixture and refrigerate for up to two weeks.
To make the Blueberry Gin Rickey:
2 shots of gin (3 ounces)
4 shots of club soda (6 ounces)
3 tablespoons of blueberry simple syrup
basil leaves for garnish