Happy Hour-Bruleed Grapefruit Bourbon Brown Derby

I pulled out the good glasses for this one.  This cocktail looked fancy, tasted fancy, and since today is my birthday, why not???

I'm really kind of digging bourbon cocktails lately.  Especially if they aren't too overpowering.  It's definitely a sipping kind of cocktail, though. A Brown Derby is usually make with either bourbon or rum and grapefruit.  I decided on bourbon this time and used Four Roses Small Batch. Four Roses is not overly-sweet and has hints of oak and caramel.  Those flavors paired perfectly with the brûléed grapefruit and honey syrup.

Brûléed Grapefruit Bourbon Brown Derby

Printable Recipe

For the brûléed grapefruit:
2 grapefruit
2 tablespoons sugar

For the honey syrup:
1 cup water
1 cup honey

For the cocktail:
3 ounces brûléed grapefruit juice
2 ounces bourbon
½ ounce honey syrup
½ brûléed grapefruit slice for garnish

To make the brûléed grapefruit:
Cut both grapefruit in half and slice one of the halves into rounds.  Place the grapefruit on a baking sheet and sprinkle generously with the sugar.  Broil on high for 5-8 minutes until starting to caramelize.

To make the syrup:
In a sauce pan, combine the water and honey and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Allow to boil until thickened.  Remove from heat and refrigerate.  Can be refrigerated for up to a week.

To make the cocktail:
In a shaker filled with ice, combine the brûléed grapefruit juice, bourbon, and honey syrup.  Shake until well combined.  Pour into a whiskey glass and top with ½ brûléed grapefruit slice.





  1. Happy belated birthday!!! My sister and bil are big bourbon drinkers. Manhattan's are a regular occurrence at their house. I can't do it. But she makes an apple cider bourbon drink that I can down like kool aid. Grapefruit and honey are winners in my book, so I'm pretty sure I could sip away on this one.

    1. Thank you! I kind of feel the same about bourbon as you, but it’s growing on me lately. Apple cider bourbon sounds delicious.