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The Basin and Sage Cocktail

Our Favorite Summer Beverage

This holiday weekend, kick back with the Basin and Sage Cocktail—a rye whiskey concoction laced with earthy sage and a squeeze of lemon.

First, find your whiskey! We picked a bottle of our favorite brown from High West Distillery before heading out for an evening next to the fire.

The recipe below makes enough simple syrup for a batch of cocktails and if you’re camping, you can prepare the simple syrup ahead of time. The rest of the recipe makes one cocktail—scale up if you’re hosting friends! 


  • 1 cup plus 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 8 fresh sage leaves
  • 1 lemon slice
  • Ice
  • 2 oz. High West Rye Whiskey
  • Mason jar with lid


The first task is to get the fire started! It’s a well-known fact that whiskey’s best served besides a campfire.

Next, prepare the sage-infused simple syrup; combine water, 1 cup of the sugar, and 4 of the sage leaves in a small pot and bring to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Let the sage leaves steep in the syrup for about 30 minutes before removing. 

In the Mason jar, add the remaining 4 sage leaves and 1 tsp sugar. Using a muddler, press down on the leaves in the bottom of the jar for about a minute until very aromatic. If you don’t have a muddler, a thick wooden spoon will work in a pinch. 

Add ice and whiskey to the Mason jar. Then add a squeeze of lemon and a splash of the simple syrup. 

Screw on the jar’s lid and give it a good shake for 20-30 seconds.

Using the lid as a strainer, pour that delicious concoction into your favorite camping mug.

For added smoky-tangy flavor, toast a lemon peel in the campfire and use as a garnish along with another fresh sage leaf. Cheers!