Red Sky at Night

Red Sky at Night - watercolor on aquaboard by The Cocktail Artist
You have probably heard that old saying "Red sky at night, sailor's delight. Red sky in morning, sailors take warning." According to the Library of Congress Research Center there is some truth to this saying - which apparently can be traced back to the Bible. You can do some Googling (or use the link we've provided) if you want to learn more, but we are moving on to creating some artwork and mixing a drink.

We cannot take credit for creating this cocktail. It came to us via  Sailing World magazine's Ginger Beer Cocktail Contest back in 2013. The beautiful color of this drink comes from purple basil. You can't achieve the same effect or the same taste using green basil, so if you don't have the purple variety we suggest that you try our Basil Gimlet recipe.

We didn't do much to modify the original recipe, other than to prepare the cocktail in a mixing glass and then fine strain the purple basil from the drink as it's poured into the serving glass. If you like having the basil pieces in your drink (like mint in a mojito) you can skip the straining step.

We feel like we have really captured both the spirit and the aesthetics of the Red Sky at Night cocktail in this watercolor painting. The Artist is a weekend sailor and has done countless seascapes and sailboat paintings. So if you can't enjoy this cocktail at the end of a day on the water, we've included plenty of original artwork to help set the mood.


ps... for one of our original cocktail recipes using purple basil see our Split Rock Cocktail.

Red Sky at Night

2 oz. white rum
8-10 leaves of fresh purple basil
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
4 oz. ginger beer

Muddle basil and lemon juice in a mixing glass. Add rum and stir. Strain into a lowball glass with crushed ice and stir. Add ginger beer, stir once and garnish with a sprig of purple basil and a lemon wedge (add more crushed ice if space allows).

Red Sky at Night cocktail ingredients

Evening Light - original watercolor by the Cocktail Artist

Untitled watercolor painting by the Cocktail Artist

Evening sky from the deck of the Cocktail Artist's sailboat

Sailor's Delight - original watercolor by the Cocktail Artist

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