This Garden-to-Glass "Garden Collins" Cocktail Is Fresh and Refreshing

a glass of lemonade with a lemon slice and a lemon slice
Garden Collins CocktailIan Palmer

Summer is the ideal season for simple and refreshing cocktails, and in our opinion, nothing hits the mark better than a Tom Collins. The classic combination of gin, lemon juice, sugar, and soda is easy to make and deliciously thirst-quenching on hot summer days.

However, summer is also the time of year when most backyard herb gardens are absolutely overrun with ready-to-harvest herbs, making it the perfect time to prune those plants back and incorporate the harvest into a tasty cocktail!

Our take on the classic Collins style cocktail starts with an easy summer herb syrup, utilizing two essential backyard herb-garden ingredients – mint and basil. This are paired with honeysuckle vodka, fresh lemon juice, and soda for a light, bright, and invigorating summer cocktail.

Yields: 1 serving

Prep Time: 20 mins

Total Time: 20 mins


  • 1 1/2 oz.

    Honeysuckle vodka, such as Cathead

  • 3/4 oz.

    fresh lemon juice, plus lemon wedge for garnish

  • 3/4 oz.

    summer herb syrup (recipe below)

  • Soda water

  • Basil and mint sprigs, for garnish


  1. Combine vodka, lemon juice, syrup, and ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake until well chilled, 10 to 15 seconds.

  2. Strain into a collins glass. Top with ice and soda water. Garnish with a lemon wedge and mint and basil sprigs.

For Summer Herb Syrup:

  1. Combine 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup fresh basil, 1/2 cup fresh mint, and 1 cup water in a small sauce pan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat, cover, and steep for 10 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer. Chill in an airtight container for up to 5 days. (Yields about 1 cup.)

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