Strawberry Peppercorn Smash

A strawberry drink even your dad could get down with
47 Ratings
100% would make again
Strawberry peppercorn smash
Photo: Katie Foster/Tasting Table

Imagine yourself on a gorgeous island, far from your cares. You suddenly have an overwhelming urge for a sweet, strawberry cocktail, thinking that no one will judge you in this carefree Caribbean locale. Then imagine the summer breeze coming to a halt (akin to a record screeching) as the bartender gives you a nasty glare, begrudgingly blending you a beverage full of fruit and palpable ire.

That exact scenario happened to me recently, and it got me thinking: We need to take a stand for the strawberry. No more shall we fear the judgement of salty bartenders or our companions for our love of drinking that sweet, little springtime fruit on a hot day.

So here's a stigma-free strawberry cocktail with complexity, oakiness and a peppery kick. It's a take on a whiskey smash that even your manliest (or judgiest) friends won't be ashamed to drink.

Strawberry Peppercorn Smash

Recipe from the Tasting Table Test Kitchen

Yield: 1 cocktail

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: N/A

Total Time: 5 minutes


2 to 3 strawberries, sliced, plus 1 extra for garnish

3 basil leaves, plus extra for garnish

½ ounce raw simple syrup (1 part raw sugar to 1 part water)

2 ounces bourbon

¾ ounce fresh lemon juice

6 to 7 grinds fresh black pepper


In a shaker, muddle the strawberries, basil and simple syrup. Add the bourbon, lemon juice and black pepper. Fill the shaker with ice, then shake and strain the liquid into an ice-filled rocks glass. Garnish it with a strawberry and some basil leaves and serve.

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