Bourbon Breeze Cocktail Recipe

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Bourbon Breeze Nutrition Facts






Created by

Nic Polotnianko

I fell in love with the art of mixology 6 years ago. Since then, I've honed my skills, crafting a myriad of cocktail recipes, and sharing my passion with other enthusiasts.

Last Updated: January 7, 2024


The Bourbon Breeze is a modern classic, perfect for those who appreciate the depth of bourbon but enjoy a refreshing twist. It's a cocktail that has gained popularity for its balance of strong whiskey notes with the freshness of citrus and the sweetness of cranberry.

  • Origins
    • The exact origins are unclear, but it's believed to have been crafted by bartenders looking to offer a bourbon-based cocktail that was both accessible and refreshing.
  • Popularity
    • It's particularly popular in the summer months and among those who are new to bourbon.
  • Audience
    • Ideal for whiskey enthusiasts and cocktail adventurers alike.

How Bourbon Breeze Tastes?

The Bourbon Breeze offers a harmonious blend of warmth from the bourbon, tartness from the cranberry juice, and a zesty kick from the fresh citrus. It's a bold yet balanced drink with a sweet and sour profile that finishes with a smooth whiskey aftertaste.

Interesting facts about Bourbon Breeze

  • Versatility: The Bourbon Breeze can be easily adapted for different seasons by adjusting the citrus used.
  • Pairing: This cocktail pairs wonderfully with barbecue and spicy foods.
  • Customization: Bartenders often put their own twist on this drink by adding different bitters or garnishes.


  • Bourbon: 2 oz(60ml)
  • Cranberry juice: 1 oz(30ml)
  • Fresh orange juice: 0.5 oz(15ml)
  • Fresh lemon juice: 0.25 oz(8ml)
  • Simple syrup: 0.5 oz(15ml)
  • Orange slice: 1
  • Garnish: 1


The star of the show, bourbon adds a smooth, vanilla-laden sweetness with just the right amount of warmth. If you skimp on the bourbon, you may just miss the boat to flavor town. Too much, and you'll overpower the delicate balance of fruitiness.

Mary Mitkina

Cranberry Juice

This tart beverage plays second fiddle but is no less important, providing a zesty counterpoint to bourbon's sweetness. If omitted, you'd lose out on the 'breeze' part of your Bourbon Breeze.

Alex Green

Fresh Orange Juice

Adding a touch of sunny sweetness, orange juice is like that friend who gets along with everyone at the party. If you leave it out, the harmony's just not the same. A bit more, and you're brunching with a mimosa's cousin.

Emma Rose

Fresh Lemon Juice

The zingy sharpshooter of the group, lemon juice cuts through the sweetness like a hot knife through butter, bringing balance to the force. Dial it down, and your cocktail may fall on the too-sweet side.

Mary Mitkina

Simple Syrup

The peacemaker—without simple syrup, the tartness could take center stage uninvited. Too much, and you'll have a sugar rush on your hands. Just enough sweetens the deal wonderfully.

Alex Green

Orange Slice

The garnish isn't just for show—think of it like a welcome sign that says, 'Drink me, I'm delicious!' and invites you in with a citrusy scent.

Emma Rose

Recipe. How to make Bourbon Breeze Drink

  1. Fill a shaker with ice.
  2. Add the bourbon, cranberry juice, orange juice, lemon juice, and simple syrup.
  3. Shake well until chilled.
  4. Strain into a glass filled with ice.
  5. Garnish with an orange slice.

Pro Tips

  • Chill the Glass: Before serving, chill the glass to keep the cocktail colder for longer.
  • Fresh Juice: Always use fresh citrus juices for the best flavor.
  • Balance: Adjust the simple syrup according to the tartness of the cranberry juice and the sweetness preference of your guest.

Perfect Pairings


  • Charcuterie Boards: The robust nature of bourbon and the freshness of citrus makes Bourbon Breeze a delightful companion to a charcuterie board filled with salty meats, various cheeses, and sweet fruits.

Main Courses

  • Grilled Steak: The smoky flavor of bourbon pairs well with the charred exterior of a grilled steak.


  • Chocolate Desserts: The sweetness and tartness of the Bourbon Breeze cocktail can complement rich chocolate desserts, providing a refreshing contrast.

Non-Alcoholic Beverages

  • Sparkling Water: A neutral, fizzy drink like sparkling water can cleanse the palate between sips of this cocktail.

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What you could change in Bourbon Breeze

  • Bourbon: If you don't have a specific brand, any good quality bourbon will do. Maker's Mark or Bulleit are excellent choices.
  • Cranberry Juice: Pomegranate juice can be a great substitute for a different twist.
  • Simple Syrup: Agave syrup can be used for a smoother sweetness.

Explore all drinks starting with B here

And of course - twists🍹

Smoke & Spice Bourbon Breeze

  • Add a pinch of cayenne and use smoked bourbon for a fiery kick.
  • Recipe: Same as the original but sprinkle a pinch of cayenne on top after shaking. Use smoked bourbon instead of regular.
  • Taste Difference: Expect a spicier sip with a smoky backdrop. The heat and smoke will add a nice contrast with the sweet and tart components.

Bourbon Breeze Sangria

  • Use red wine instead of bourbon and add sliced strawberries.
  • Recipe: Replace bourbon with red wine, mix the other ingredients as per original, and add a handful of sliced strawberries to the mix before shaking.
  • Taste Difference: This twist will give you a fruitier and lighter cocktail, still refreshing but with a vino twist.

Apple Orchard Breeze

  • Swap cranberry juice for apple cider and garnish with a cinnamon stick.
  • Recipe: Use apple cider in place of cranberry juice. Keep all other ingredients the same and garnish with a cinnamon stick.
  • Taste Difference: The apple cider will introduce a sweet and earthy fall flavor that cozies up nicely with bourbon's warmth, complemented by the hint of cinnamon.

In case you forgot basics how to make Bourbon Breeze

The basic composition of simple syrup is relatively straightforward – a 1:1 ratio of sugar and water. This mixture is heated until the sugar dissolves, resulting in a clear, sweet syrup.

Learn everything about simple syrup

Add your ingredients to the shaker first, then ice. Fill it up to ¾ of its capacity to ensure enough space for shaking. Hold the shaker with both hands (one on the top and one on the bottom) and shake vigorously. The shake should come from your shoulders, not your wrists.

Learn everything on how to shake

Place your chosen strainer on top of the shaker or mixing glass, ensuring a secure fit. Pour the cocktail into a glass through the strainer, which will catch solid ingredients and ice. If double straining, hold the fine mesh strainer between the shaker and the glass.

Learn everything on how to strain

Garnishing a bar drink depends on the type of garnish and the cocktail. Generally, it involves preparing the garnish (like cutting a citrus wheel or picking a sprig of mint), and then adding it to the drink in a visually appealing way (like perching it on the rim or floating it on top).

Learn everything on garnishing

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Frequently Asked Questions on Bourbon Breeze

Can the Bourbon Breeze be served as a pitcher cocktail for parties?

Yes, the Bourbon Breeze can be scaled up and served from a pitcher. Just multiply the ingredient quantities by the number of servings you need, mix in a large pitcher with ice, and stir well before serving.

What type of glass is ideal for serving a Bourbon Breeze?

A Bourbon Breeze is typically served in an old-fashioned glass or a highball glass, depending on your preference for ice and presentation.

Is the Bourbon Breeze suitable for batch preparation in advance?

It's best to mix the Bourbon Breeze fresh due to the inclusion of fresh juices, but you can premix the alcoholic components and add the juices when ready to serve.

Are there non-alcoholic versions of the Bourbon Breeze?

Yes, you can create a mocktail version by substituting the bourbon with a non-alcoholic spirit or by increasing the amounts of the other ingredients and adding a splash of soda water or ginger ale for a non-alcoholic drink with a similar flavor profile.

What food dishes pair well with the Bourbon Breeze cocktail?

Apart from barbecue and spicy foods, the Bourbon Breeze also pairs nicely with smoked meats, roasted vegetables, and even fruit-based desserts.

How important is the ice quality for the Bourbon Breeze?

Using clear, high-quality ice not only makes the Bourbon Breeze more visually appealing but also melts slower, diluting the drink less and keeping it at the right temperature longer.

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