It’s always a good idea to serve an enticing mocktail to guests at a gathering, or to yourself on a hot day. Non-drinkers will appreciate the option, and drinkers will also appreciate the option when it’s as delicious as this colorful, flavorful mango basil fizz that only takes a few minutes to make. It also scales up very well—you won’t regret mixing up a large pitcher.
Whip up a double-batch of basil simple syrup ahead of time and use it liberally as an easy way to add sweet, savory, peppery zip to plenty of other cocktails and mocktails, as well as lemonade, iced tea, and even seltzer. Basil simple syrup is the perfect way to use up a summer glut of this easy-to-grow herb, especially varieties like purple, Thai, and lemon basil.
You can find mangoes at many supermarkets year-round, but ripe, seasonal fruit makes a beautiful garnish for this mocktail and pairs exceptionally well with the sweet anise flavor in the basil. Rather than risk bringing home a hard, sour specimen that won’t do anyone any favors, garnish with a few cubes of frozen mango (which has the added benefit of keeping your drink extra-chilled) when fresh is out of season or unavailable.
To make this mango basil fizz in advance, combine all the ingredients except the sparkling water, and refrigerate for up to three days. This recipe is formulated specifically as a mocktail, but the mango and basil flavors absolutely welcome your spirit of choice (especially tequila or vodka). Just add an ounce to the glass along with the juice, salt, and simple syrup, and top with sparkling water to your desired strength. —jodiloves
For the basil simple syrup, add the sugar and water to a small saucepan over low heat, and whisk until sugar dissolves.
Add 5 basil leaves, and continue to simmer for 5 minutes. Remove the basil leaves, let the syrup cool to room temperature, and transfer to a sterilized jar or plastic squeeze bottle. Store in the refrigerator for up to a week.
For the mango basil fizz: Add the mango juice, salt, and basil simple syrup to your desired number of glass, and stir well.
Fill each glass with ice, and top off with sparkling water.
Garnish with extra basil leaves and sliced mango, and serve.