photograph by Amy Brinkley

Being a North Carolina native, I grew up drinking lemonade for as long as I can remember. My mama would always make lemonade during summertime on the weekends. As a child, I admired her perfectly sliced lemons in the clear glass pitcher.

Now that I’m a grown-up, I enjoy experimenting with different types of liquor in my lemonade, and this bourbon lemonade cocktail hits the spot. There is nothing I enjoy more than sitting in my rocking chair on my front porch after a long day, sipping this cocktail. When the oaky flavor of bourbon is combined with tart, sweet lemonade and orange liqueur, it results in a smooth lemonade cocktail you’ll be sure to enjoy throughout the warmer months.

I like to keep my cocktails local, so I used NC-based Defiant Whisky when spiking this lemonade.

Whether you’re entertaining or like to enjoy a cocktail after work, you can’t go wrong this simple bourbon lemonade cocktail.

1 part bourbon
2 parts lemonade
1 part triple sec (orange liqueur)
Sprig of rosemary for garnish (optional)

Pour ingredients in a glass over ice and stir to combine.

This story was published on

Brinkley lives in coastal North Carolina, and blogs about all things food. She is regular contributor on the Our State website, Parade Magazine’s, and