Get to know gin with these historical and classic gin cocktails.
Gin and Tonic. Or Gin Tonic, depending on where you live. This is the quintessential classic gin cocktail. Does this simple and understated cocktail have a reason to be at the top of this list? YES, it does. You can absolutely savor the delicate flavors of your chosen gin in this drink.
Gin and Tonic
Go easy or heavy on the lime to taste.
Use this simple formula to create amazing and simple Gin and Tonic cocktails suited just to you.
- 1 Part Gin
- 1 to 2 Parts Tonic Water
- 1 Wedge Lime or not.
- Start with a chilled glass. Toss any ice that you were using to chill your glass and add new.
- Measure and pour your gin right into your vessel of choice.
- Top off with your tonic. Many single serve tonics are just the right amount for a jigger of gin, however, add as much tonic as you like to taste.
- Finish with some lime. Options include a fresh squeeze of lime and the wedge tossed in. You can also just add a wedge of lime.
- If you want to skip the juice and focus on the citrus oil, it’s easy. Slice off some rind to twist over your glass, or twist and then rub along the rim of your glass. You can also toss the rind into your libation.
- Enjoy! Responsibly, of course!
Gimlet. Tart and tangy, the gimlet is every lime lovers choice for refreshment and a buzz. Do you add some simple syrup if you have a sweeter disposition? Perhaps.
- 2 parts Gin
- 3/4 part Fresh lime juice
- 3/4 part Simple syrup
- Add ice to your favorite shaker.
- Lovingly, add your gin, lime juice, and simple syrup. Substitute Rose's lime for fresh lime and simple syrup if you want to save a few things to wash.
- Now shake the hell out of it. Generally speaking, shake all cocktails that have citrus. There are exceptions, this is not one of them.
- Strain into a martini glass or coupe (scandalous!) glass of your choice.
- Add a garnish of your choosing if you dare. The traditional garnish is a lime wedge. Go for subtle flavor and add a cucumber, go for color and add raspberries, go for camp and add an umbrella.
Gibson. It’s dry, with a touch of brine, and oh so powerful. You could turn this gin cocktail into a snack with enough pickled onions, and I encourage you to do so. This is, perhaps, my favorite gin cocktail of all time. Or just the time I’m typing this.
- 2 parts Gin
- 1/2 part Vermouth ***make it dry vermouth for a more pungent flavor, use sweet vermouth if you like that lollipop sweetness. Use more or less to your liking.
- 57 brined onions Not really 57, unless you LOVE the brine. One or two is just fine.
- Chill you cocktail glass. The freezer, with ice, or upside down in a vat of ice cubes.
- Find the fanciest cocktail stirring glass you can and add your gin and vermouth.
- Add about 1/2 cup ice.
- Stir. Hopefully, that part's obvious.
- Strain into your martini glass.
There are also some fancier and more complicated classic gin drinks.
Gin Martini. This is somewhat similar to the Gibson, just as powerful, but with an option for olive or lemon twist. Go for this if you want the punch but not the brine in your straight-up gin cocktail.
The Gin Martini
- 2 1/2 Oz. Gin
- 1/2 Oz. Dry Vermouth
- 1 or 3 Olives
- 1 dash Angostura Bitters
- Start with a chilled glass, a martini glass if you have one. But really.
- Combine your gin and vermouth, and perhaps your bitters, in a stirring container with ice.
- Stir for about 30 seconds or so.
- Strain into your freshly chilled martini glass.
- Garnish with an odd number of olives or a lemon twist.
Negroni. Ah, the Italians created a bitter masterpiece with this classic gin cocktail. If ever there was a gin cocktail that might make someone hate gin, this is it. But really it’s the Campari that makes it oh so distinguished.
- 1 part Gin
- 1 part Campari
- 1 part Vermouth Use the sweet or semi-sweet red Vermouth here.
- 1 Orange slice
- Gather your liquid ingredients into a cocktail stirring glass. Save the orange for snacking and garnishing.
- Add ice and stir. So far, so simple.
- Strain into a rocks glass over some fresh ice.
- Add your orange wedge garnish.
Tom Collins. Imagine being on a boat, relaxing your day away, and wanting to enjoy some sort of light and refreshing alcoholic cocktail all day long. And all night long. The Tom Collins is for you, then, the epitome of boat cocktails. And also, please don’t Captain when you’ve been Tom Collins-ing.
The Tom Collins
- 2 Oz. Gin
- 3/4 Oz. Lemon juice Do squeeze your own for the best possible taste.
- 3/4 Oz. SImple syrup
- 2 Oz. Club soda Try seltzer if that's what you have.
- Chill your Collins glass! Either pop it in the freezer, let it sit filled with ice, or dunk in a bucket of ice. Empty any ice before your ingredients are added.
- Add your gin, lemon juice, and simple syrup to a shaker. Top with ice and shake vigorously.
- Strain into your Collins glass, which now has fresh ice added.
- Top off with club soda.
- Garnish with a lemon wedge, slice, or sliver. Maraschino cherry is often added as well!
Is the Gin and Ginger also a classic gin cocktail? Perhaps not, but it is simple and clean and fresh and delicious.