If there was currently a hip cocktail it would have to be The Gimlet. Technically a sour – meaning that it contains a base liquor, lime (or lemon) juice, and a sweetener – the rules are fairly liberal. You can have a lot of fun putting together a recipe. Read: a lot of fun.
This cocktails dates to the mid-20s and was originally a very sweet concoction compared to today’s standard of mixed drinks. Often 1:1 liquor to lime juice and sugar, it fit the challenges of prohibition where the alcohol of the day wasn’t quite up to today’s standards. Think bathtub gin.
But now there are amazing gins on the market with all nuances of flavors allowing the base liquor to form a significant taste equation in the final cocktail. That’s pretty cool if you ask me. It also allows the bartender to be very creative with their cocktails. Many times you will find recipes that contain Rose’s Lime Juice. There is nothing wrong with this approach, but with all the amazing limes we can get in Texas I prefer the taste of fresh juice.
For me, most sour cocktails are best consumed ice cold although I prefer them neat and not over ice. That means you need to make them – then consume them. When I was in Dublin, Ireland with Cat we had the opportunity to attend a bartending school and one thing was drilled into my head: when making a sour, have your garnish ready in the glass. I think this is a good rule for all cocktails.
In this recipe I include a quick garnish of marinated dried cranberries soaked in gin with cinnamon sticks and star anise. This is of course optional, but I think a treat at the bottom of a cocktail is always nice. Also, you can make this drink as sweet as you want by including more or less cranberry juice – your call. Enjoy.
For the garnish
2 TBS dried cranberries
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise
Enough gin to cover the berries.
Allow to steep for 30 min. Refrigerate leftovers.
For the cocktail
4 TBS gin, I prefer Hendrick’s
2TBS pomegranate juice
1 to 2 TBS cranberry juice
juice of hefty half-lime
Mix in in a shaker and shake hard until frost appears on the outside of the vessel. Strain into a martini-style cocktail glass with steeped cranberries in the bottom. Garnish with lime wedge. Serve immediately. Be careful.
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