Cocktails: Bourbon Smash

Hello creatives.

As a creative, I enjoy being creative in many aspects of life and cocktails are no exception.  There are so many opportunity to be creative when it comes to drinks.  Different liquors, mixes, garnishes, shaken, stirred, layered.  The possibilities are nearly endless.

This past weekend was the Belmont Stakes, which for those of you who aren't into horse racing, is the third and final race of the prestigious Triple Crown.  The feat of becoming a Triple Crown champion has been elusive for the past 36 years, which means that I have not seen a Triple Crown winner in my lifetime.  It's been close 12 times in the past 36 years, with a horse having won the first two races, but going on to lose the third.  This year was one of those years.  California Chrome was set up to become a Triple Crown champ, and with the final race this past weekend, I felt like a special cocktail was in order to cheer on the beautiful young chestnut stallion.

The bourbon smash is a cocktail that has become a signature Triple Crown cocktail, presumably because of bourbon's association with Kentucky and it's ties with horse racing, with Jim Beam and Woodford Reserve both sponsoring major horse racing events.  There are a few different versions of a bourbon smash, and I for one enjoy a lighter, fruitier version.  Here is my recipe for a heavenly bourbon smash cocktail.

Yum.  Is your mouth watering yet?

Bourbon Smash

1 oz of bourbon (I used Jim Beam)
A few raspberries
A few mint leaves
Cranberry juice
Funky Straw


Toss a few raspberries (four or five) in the bottom of a highball glass (in this case I had green and purple tumblers, California Chrome colours).  Tear up a few fresh mint leaves and toss them in there too.  With a wooden spoon, smash the raspberries and mint leaves together to release the flavours.  Add ice and bourbon.  Fill the rest of the glass half with cranberry juice and half with Sprite.  Stir and enjoy.

For the record, California Chrome did not win the Belmont or the Triple Crown.  Alas, I will have to wait for another year.


This drink is SO delicious on hot summer nights, I can't even stand it.  But beware - it goes down easy.  Drink responsibly.

Enjoy and let loose, creatives!

- Amy  xo

Amy is a full-time photographer based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.  You can check out her work here and here.  

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