Whiskey Smash

You’ll become a whiskey lover once you try one of these minty fresh cocktails.

Whiskey Smash

Sometimes you find yourself in a mood, getting that certain feeling. And I’m taking about cravings. You suddenly have a taste, a yearning for something delicious. Could be a favorite dish, and the memory of it makes you salivate. Or on a hot day, with the sun beating down, you might start getting thirsty for something refreshing. And strong.

Whiskey leaps into your brain. Not literally, of course. Imagine walking down the street and seeing actual whiskey burrowing its way into somebody’s head… that’d be really weird. No, I’m talking about an idea that creeps into your noodle and gives your mind-grapes a little squeeze. “Whiskey,” they whisper. Your throat gets dry, and your thoughts drift to a cold, ice filled glass…

That nice walk you were taking down the boardwalk has gotten a tad warm, and little beads of sweat begin collecting on your forehead. Your tongue is getting thicker as the sun turns the heat up a bit more. The steps you’ve been taking start to slow and drag. You can feel your power draining. A lemonade would be perfect… but something with whiskey, now that would be divine.

As luck would have it, you pass by an opulent and historic-looking whiskey bar, its saloon-styled doors just opening for business. Only just past lunchtime, it might be a little too early for a tipple, but you’ve taken the day for yourself. And this heat, it grows steadily. Something cold with ice in a sweating, frosty glass sounds perfect. You walk through the doors, and the barkeep nods silently. “Whiskey,” you croak. The dryness in your gullet barely allows the word to come out.

The bartender bows, knowingly, and begins working a seasoned mixologist’s magic. Muddling lemons in a shaker with a surgeon’s care, then adding the whiskey, syrup and mint along with ice… it was a like watching a private performance. The sound of the cocktail being shaken only makes you thirstier. Soon, you have it in your hand. A Whiskey Smash. You sip, slowly at first, then greedily. The bite of the spirit, and the sweet, tart flavor of the lemon and mint soothe the heat in your body.

You let out a satisfying “ahhhhhhhh”, releasing a blast of frosty air from your lungs. The sweat has evaporated from your brow. The heat of the day is long forgotten… smashed, if you will.

What is a Whiskey Smash?

A close cousin to the Mint Julep, a Whiskey Smash is also sort of related to a Whiskey Sour. The Sour will sometimes use egg white for froth and is served “up”, while the Smash muddles the lemons and mint and is poured on the rocks. The Julep is also made with mint, but doesn’t include any citrus. The Whiskey Smash, because of the fruit used, is a lighter tasting cocktail. People have been enjoying this drink for more than 200 years, even before it first appeared in Jerry Thomas’ iconic tome “The Bartender’s Guide” in 1862. That first recipe that was published was referred to then as a Julep, but amended as an official Whiskey Smash in the 1887 revision of the book.

What is the Best Alcohol to Use in a Whiskey Smash?

If the drink is called a Whiskey Smash, then why are we using bourbon in this recipe? Bourbon and whiskey being the same has been hotly debated. The way I understand it is this: “All bourbon is whiskey, but not all whiskey is bourbon”. Whiskey can be made anywhere in the world, while bourbon is specifically an American spirit. It’s a little bit sweeter than whiskey, with many having notes of oak, caramel and vanilla. Bourbon must also be aged for two years or more and distilled from a mix that’s at least 51% corn. Whiskies don’t require this process. Of course you can use your favorite whiskey in the Whiskey Smash, but I’m recommending bourbon. You’ll thank me later.

Whiskey Smash
Servings 1
5 minutes


  • 3 lemon wedges
  • 2 ounces bourbon
  • 3/4 ounce simple syrup
  • 4 mint leaves
  • Garnish: mint sprig


  • Muddle the lemon wedges in a shaker to release their juices and essential oils.
    Whiskey Smash
  • Add the bourbon, simple syrup, and mint leaves into the shaker.
    Whiskey Smash
  • Fill the shaker with ice, secure the lid, and shake vigorously until the mixture is well-chilled, about 30 seconds.
    Whiskey Smash
  • Double-strain the mixture into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice to catch any small bits of mint or lemon.
    Whiskey Smash
  • Garnish with a sprig of mint, giving it a gentle slap before adding it to the glass to release its aroma.


Calories: 207kcal | Carbohydrates: 21g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 0.2g | Saturated Fat: 0.03g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 15mg | Potassium: 112mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 182IU | Vitamin C: 30mg | Calcium: 27mg | Iron: 1mg
Whiskey Smash

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Whiskey Smash

Similar Cocktails to the Whiskey Smash

Now you love whiskey, right? And I’m sure you’re thinking about that next, delicious sip of whatever new cocktail you’re about to discover. Twist & Toast can help you out with that. Check out some of these whiskey forward treats to find your next favorite:

  • New York Sour – Let whiskey and a red wine put you in a New York state of mind with this tangy and refreshing tipple.
  • Whiskey Highball – This simple and timeless cocktail is sure to be a big hit at your next barbecue.
  • Classic Hot Toddy – The perfect cold weather companion will fill you with cozy, warm sensations.
  • Whiskey Sour – Learn to whip up the classic whiskey concoction for your next party or gathering. Or just for yourself.

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