The Busy Bee is a buzz-worthy twist on the classic Prohibition era Bee’s Knees cocktail, and it’s a perfect libation for the Queen Bee of Mixology herself! This is a recipe that’s simple, but has a flavorful blend of ingredients. If you’re a fan of light and refreshing cocktails, then this is a recipe that you’ll want to save.
The Bee’s Knees is beloved for its straightforward combination of gin, honey, and lemon. It’s fresh, sweet, and slightly tart. The Busy Bee takes this foundation and weaves in a tapestry of added dimensions that make it truly special.
Just like the classic Bee’s Knees, this is a gin based cocktail. It was important for me to keep the same essence of the original recipe but add my own modern twist. If you’ve been following me for some time, you’ll know that I am a huge fan of gin and I love mixing it in my cocktail recipes. Its known for its botanical notes and subtle piney flavors which provide a unique flavor profile to this Busy Bee cocktail.
Honey and lemon juice are also the key players in this recipe, and with a natural sweetness from the honey and a tangy lemon kick, you end up with a well-rounded drink.
Now it’s time to get into my signature additions that make this drink stand out from the classic. The twist starts with the Maraschino liqueur. Maraschino isn’t just any cherry liqueur; it’s crafted from Marasca cherries and has an almond-like depth. It introduces a slightly fruity and nutty touch to the drink that I found to be quite different than anything I’d sipped on before.
Adding on to the tasting notes of the Maraschino liqueur, I poured in just a bit of Luxardo cherry syrup. Derived from candied cherries, this syrup further emphasizes the cherry undertone of the Maraschino liqueur. It’s a sweetness that’s rich and fruity, and not just sugary.
And to finish the cocktail mixture off, I gave it a few dashes of orange bitters and it made all the difference! These bitters bring a citrusy zing and really compliment all of the existing layers of this Busy Bee cocktail.
Step 1: Add all ingredients into a shaker topped with ice. Shake vigorously until chilled.
Step 2: Strain the mixture into a coupe glass. Garnish with a Luxardo Cherry skewer.
So, why is the Busy Bee worth trying? Because it’s a beautiful balance of classic and contemporary. While it respects the simplicity of the Bee’s Knees, it isn’t afraid to introduce new flavors, making it a sophisticated, multi-layered drink.
Next time you’re in the mood for a cocktail that’s both familiar and adventurous, think of the Busy Bee!