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My favorite way to make a classic 3-ingredient gimlet cocktail, naturally sweetened with honey simple syrup.
Tgif, friends! I vote that we toast the weekend with one of my favorite fresh and easy warm-weather cocktails…
…a classic gimlet. ♡
(Yes, for all of you podcast listeners out there, the gimlet was a gin cocktail long before it was a media network!) If you happen to be new to this drink, a classic gimlet is traditionally made with gin, fresh lime juice and simple syrup. It’s quick and easy to mix in a cocktail shaker or mason jar with ice, and then it is traditionally served with a slice of lime. So simple!
I prefer to naturally sweeten gimlet cocktails with honey simple syrup, whose botanical flavor I believe pairs more beautifully with gin than traditional white sugar simple syrup. You are also welcome to sub vodka for gin, of course, if you prefer a vodka gimlet. And if you feel like getting a bit creative and customizing your own gimlet, I’ve also included many other idea below for other herbs, liqueurs or botanicals that would be delicious add-ins too.
It’s a simple three-ingredient recipe that should be in every cocktail lover’s back pocket. So grab your favorite bottle of gin, and let’s make a gimlet!
To make this classic gimlet recipe, you will need the following ingredients (amounts listed in the recipe below)…
- Gin: Use whatever kind of gin you love best for this cocktail!
- Fresh limes: Some will argue that a classic gimlet drink needs to be made with lime cordial, but I prefer to use freshly-squeezed lime juice, which many historians believe is actually how this cocktail originated.
- Honey simple syrup: Made easily by whisking together a 50/50 mix of honey and warm water until the honey has dissolved.
- Ice: To shake and chill the cocktail.
How To Make A Gimlet Cocktail:
To make a gin gimlet cocktail, simply…
- Combine. Combine all of the ingredients in a cocktail shaker or mason jar, along with a handful of ice, then cover and shake until chilled.
- Strain and serve. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass (coupe glasses are traditional) and serve with a slice of lime, if you would like.
Gimlet Recipe Variations:
Want to get creative and customize your gimlet recipe? Feel free to…
- Use vodka instead of gin. If you would like to make a traditional vodka gimlet.
- Add herbs. Muddle in some fresh basil or rosemary — or briefly simmer fresh herbs in your honey simple syrup — to add some extra fresh herb flavor.
- Add botanicals. Shake in some extra dried juniper berries, peppercorns, cardamom pods, dried ginger, dried citrus peels, etc for extra flavor.
- Add cucumber. Muddle in a few slices of fresh cucumber, then strain the cocktail and serve with an extra cucumber slice or two as a garnish.
How do you pronounce “gimlet?” It’s pronounced with a hard “g,” like the word “give.”
Where did the name “gimlet” originate? According to Wikipedia, “the name of the cocktail is contested. It may be named after the tool for drilling small holes (alluding to its ‘piercing’ effect on the drinker) or after Surgeon Admiral Sir Thomas Gimlette KCB (1857–1943), who is said to have first added lime cordial to the daily gin tot of the men of the Royal Navy to help combat the ravages of scurvy on long voyages.”
What if I want to use Rose’s lime juice cordial? You can just use the same amount of the lime juice cordial as you would fresh lime juice, then omit the simple syrup.
More Favorite Gin Cocktails:
Looking for more classic gin cocktail recipes? Here are a few of my faves…
My favorite way to make a classic 3-ingredient gimlet cocktail, naturally sweetened with honey instead of simple syrup. See notes above for possible ingredient variations and add-ins.
- 2 ounces (1/4 cup) gin
- 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) fresh lime juice
- 1/2 to 1 ounce (1 to 2 tablespoons) honey simple syrup,* to taste
- lime slices, for garnish
- Combine. Combine the gin, lime juice and honey simple syrup in a cocktail shaker or mason jar. Add in a handful of ice. Then cover and shake vigorously for 15 seconds, or until the mixture is chilled.
- Strain and serve. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and serve with a slice of lime, if you would like.
To make honey simple syrup: Whisk together 1 tablespoon honey and 1 tablespoon very warm water until the honey has completely dissolved. I recommend adding 1 tablespoon of the honey simple syrup to begin, then give the cocktail a quick taste and mix a second tablespoon if you would like it to be sweeter.