Hump Day Happy Hour: The Gimlet

standard March 12, 2015 Leave a response


Hello Friends.

I’m happy to tell you that the last few days here in the great Commonwealth of Pennsylvania have been INCREDIBLE. Last week we got 10 inches of snow, this week we are pushing 60.

No complaints here.

Since we are doing some hardcore flirting with Spring, I decided that tonight we are going to drink gin. And we are going to drink gin in the form of a Gimlet.

Types of Gin

I really like gin, but never had it outside of a gin and tonic. I do know that when I was younger Bombay Sapphire was the shit. Also…it’s not blue.

Before we jump into the Gimlet, I figure we can have quick overview of the types of gin on the market:

  • London Dry Gin – probably the most common style of gin out there. If you are drinking a martini, odds are you are drinking London Dry. Typically super dry and made with juniper berries. This is what people think of when they think “gin”. The usual suspects here are: Tanqueray and Beefeater.
  • Genever – I read a book that lists Genever as 1 of 12 bottles every home bar should have. I never heard of it. Anyway, sometimes referred to as Dutch Gin, Genever is much darker than the other styles because it’s made with malt grains instead of cereral grains. Hipsters make craft cocktails with it and the big man on campus here is Bols Genever
  • Plymouth Gin – there is only one brand of Plymouth Gin on the market. Guess what it’s called. Plymouth Gin. This style is a lot less dry than it’s kinfolk, London Dry, and has to be made in Plymouth England. You can use this style interchangeably with the LD.
  • American Style Gin – these gins are made by infusing an array of different flavors (other than juniper) into the distilling process. The big dog here is Hendricks, you may have heard of it.

How About That Gimlet

Ok, now that you know what you’re dealing with gin-wise, let’s get back to our regularly scheduled program.

The Gimlet first appeared in popular culture in 1953 in the publication of Raymond Chandler’s The Long Goodbye. Now, I’ve never read it but it sounds to be right up my alley. “LA detective who like’s booze, women and chess”. Sold.

The story centers around said detective, Philip Marlowe, and a drunk named Terry Lennox. They form a rocky relationship over Gimlets with Lennox proclaiming: “A real gimlet is half gin and half Rose’s Lime Juice and nothing else.”

This really interests me b/c Rose’s anything juice is freaking sweet and I personally don’t have a taste for them. But, how you can you argue with the above statement.

You can’t.

So we are going to do this a few ways. First we’ll do the Gin and Roses (hey, that’s almost a band). Next we’ll do one with Gin and Lime Juice and Sugar. We’ll also bring in my production assistant (and wife) Joan to be the taste tester.

Disclaimer: Gimlet purists expect the Rose’s lime juice because it gives the drink it’s signature flavor. We at the Cocktail Novice recommend using fresh limes for all other drinks involving this citrus.

Here we go.

The Gimlet Recipe

  • 2 oz Dry Gin (we’re using Beefeater here because I’ve never had it)
  • 3/4 oz of Rose’s Lime Juice

Add ingredients to a mixing glass and fill with ice. Shake using a Boston shaker for about 20 seconds. Stain into a coupe glass. Nothing fancy with this one.


Feel free to experiment with the amount of Rose’s here. You could go equal parts lime juice to gin. Whatever suits your fancy.

So, this OG version is actually pretty damn good. A little dry, a little sweet, but not overly sweet. The gin is strong enough to cull down the tartness of the lime juice.

I will say I was a little scared of this because after taste testing the lime juice I almost puked as it is the only thing you can taste in the the worst drink ever, the SoCo and Lime. Gross.

Don’t drink SoCo and Lime. Ever.

Next up,

The Non-Rose’s Gimlet

  • 1 ½ oz Hendricks Gin
  • ¾ oz Fresh Lime Juice (strained)
  • 1 tsp Superfine Sugar OR ¾ oz Simple Syrup

See above for what to do.

Now this one is actually a bit sweeter as it’s very close to a “sour”, like a Fitzgerald. Either way, this one was pretty damn good as well.

Try them both and see for yourself.

In Closing

The Gimlet is a gin classic for the ages and we highly recommend anyone looking to expand their gin drinking prowess to add this fella to the top of the list.


Prolific Party Drinker. Last One To Leave. Sausage Maker. Pizza Eater. Cocktail Novice.