The blackberry bourbon smash is the whiskey drinker’s mojito. In fact, I use the same recipe as my blackberry mojito and substitute bourbon for rum. Nothing else changed. This whiskey smash is crisp, refreshing, and versatile enough for any time of year.
Bourbon, lime, mint, blackberry, simple syrup, and a splash of club soda are all you need for this fruity libation. Often the most overlooked part is the final fizzy soda addition at the end. Club soda adds effervescence and also smooths the cocktail’s edges.
I wanted the purest flavors of the bourbon and blackberry to come through—so I opt for club soda in place of anything sweet or flavored. My second favorite variation was definitely ginger beer, for an earthy, spicy, and sweeter touch. I’d experiment if I were you to see what you like best. You can’t really go wrong.
Whiskey Smash Variations
I experimented with several variations of the bourbon smash and I’m here to tell you the options are endless. Usually, you have whiskey, soda, a sweetener, an acid, fruits, and mint.
A few other options and substitutions:
- Fresh lemon and limes
- Honey, simple syrup (sugar), or maple syrup as the sweetener
- Splash of ginger beer, ginger ale, or soda water for a little fizz
- Fresh mint or basil as the herb
- Blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, peaches, or raspberries for fruit flavor
Best Bourbon For Whiskey Smash
I love bourbon because there are SO MANY great options out there at the $25-$40 price point. I would choose a lower-tier bourbon for this recipe since it’s going to be heavily flavored and fruited. My evergrowing list of favorite budget-friendly bourbons are:
- Buffalo Trace
- Elijah Craig
- Henry McKenna Single Barrel
- Four Roses Single Barrel
- Woodford Reserve
- Eagle Rare
- Knob Creek
- Maker’s Mark
Tips and Cocktail Process
For this cocktail, you’re going to want to invest in a muddler. A muddler is a handheld wooden bar tool with a wide flat head on one end. A muddler is used to mash and pulverize fruits and fresh herbs to extract the delicate flavors in cocktails. They’re inexpensive and a solid addition to any home bar set.
The key to the whiskey smash is the muddled lime wedges, fruits (blackberry), and mint leaves. A muddler will extract the oils and juices and help infuse the cocktail with all the good stuff. Add whiskey, sugar, and ice and shake. Top with soda water and serve in a double old fashioned glass.
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Blackberry Bourbon Smash Recipe
- Prep Time: 5 mins
- Total Time: 5 mins
- Yield: 1 1x
- Category: Cocktail
- Cuisine: American
A bourbon smash made with fresh lime, fresh mint leaves, blackberries, and simple sugar.
- 2 ounces bourbon
- 1/2 ounce lime juice, or 2 lime wedges, squeezed
- 6–7 mint leaves, muddled
- 2–3 blackberries, muddled
- 3/4 ounce simple syrup (1 tablespoon of sugar will do)
- 1 ounce club soda
- Cup of ice
- In a Boston shaker, combine mint leaves, lime wedges and blackberries. Muddle until pulverized. Add bourbon, ice, and simple syrup (or sugar) and shake vigorously for 10 seconds.
- Pour full contents into a rocks glass (no straining) and top with 1 ounce of club soda. Stir and garnish with mint leaves and blackberry.
Club soda can be substituted for ginger ale or ginger beer for additional flavor. My second favorite option would be ginger beer.
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 202
- Sugar: 0.2g
- Sodium: 22mg
- Fat: 0g
- Saturated Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 19g
- Fiber: 0.1g
- Protein: 0.1g
- Cholesterol: 0mg
Keywords: whiskey smash, bourbon smash
Very nice recipe! I was at an upscale seafood restaurant in Maine a few summers back and I had a Blackberry smash where Allagash White Beer was used as the seltzer. It was probably the best smash I’ve ever had, and I’ve been able to get really close to recreating it! Try making one with a nice fruity white ale, like Allagash or even Blue Moon works. And Mint Simple syrup if you can find it!
Cool idea – I’ll have to give that a shot
I’ve actually used raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries instead of blackberries. Even non whiskey drinkers can’t resist. The possibilities are endless in my opinion.
Just wanted to say thanks for this recipe! It’s spot on to a Blackberry Smash I get at a local restaurant here. Delish!! Also, I kept trying to rate the recipe 5 stars, but it wouldn’t register that I clicked it 🙁 As a fellow blogger, I know that’s important, so you totally have my permission to edit my comment and add the 5 stars!
Thanks Amanda! You’re not the first person to mention the rating issue – I will try to look into that. That’s not good!
This looks great! Thanks for doing the research to create it! Sure it was torture ?
Oh it really was ?
I’m wondering if this would work as a big batch cocktail? I want to serve it at a party in a large pitcher.
I’ve never tried but here are a few ideas. You could make everything up in a large pitcher except the club soda and ice. Muddle well and let sit. Pour over ice and add a splash of club soda to each serving. OR you could mix all the liquids in a pitcher and muddle blackberry and mint fresh in each glass then pour over ice for each serving. Hope this helps.
Have you ever tried it with cola instead of soda water?
Cola might be weird, but a common cheat for mojitos is to splash with Sprite.
Have you tried making this ahead and freezing it, then serving as a slush? I’m wondering what alterations I would have to make to the recipe for that to work.
Interesting idea! I have not, but I’m thinking I would follow instructions but leave out the soda water until you served. Otherwise freezing could kill the fizz. Also keeping the bourbon in it may prevent it from completely freezing. Not sure if this would help or hurt.