Learn what’s in a gimlet and how to make a gimlet and wow guests with this classic drink at your next cocktail party!
Have you ever had a gimlet? A gimlet is a simple, classy cocktail recipe featuring gin and lime. It's bright, crisp and seriously delicious.
Some gimlet recipes use fresh lime juice sweetened with simple syrup while others call for bottled lime juice cordial.
Legend has it that in the late 1800s, a Royal Naval officer, Sir Thomas Gimlette, invented the gimlet as a medicine for sailors suffering from scurvy.
The high dose of vitamin C in the lime juice was literally just what the doctor ordered!
The gimlet originally called for Rose’s bottled Lime Juice Cordial, which was both sweet and provided a shelf-stable source of citrus, perfect for drinks on the high seas.
Gimlets today usually use simple syrup and a squeeze of fresh lime instead, although some purists still love a gimlet made with Rose’s.
How to Make a Gimlet
To make a gimlet you will need:
- Ice in a cocktail shaker
- Good quality gin
- Simple syrup (try making homemade simple syrup)
- Fresh lime juice
- Lime slices
A gimlet is super simple to make. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice, add gin, fresh lime juice, and simple syrup (or swap out the lime and simple syrup for Rose’s lime cordial), and shake until well chilled.
For ganish, cut a thin slice of lime and wedge it on the side of the glass, or cut a long ribbon of lime peel and float it on top for a fancier look.
The result is a crisp, bright gin cocktail that will become a new favorite.
Once you have the basic gimlet recipe down, you can start to experiment with flavors.
This cranberry gimlet recipe is perfect for the holidays. And the fresh cranberries used as garnish add the perfect holiday touch.
While classic gimlets use gin, you can use vodka instead to make a vodka gimlet. Some people prefer the taste of a vodka gimlet, while others consider the only true gimlet to be one made with a good gin.
This lime drop martini is not unsimilar to a vodka gimlet, but with the addition of triple sec.
Muddle some mint leaves in your shaker before adding all the other ingredients, and you’ll get a variation of the gimlet known as the South Side.
Or swap out the muddled mint leaves for any number of other herbs, including basil, rosemary, sage, or thyme, and get an herby and refreshing drink.
Be sure to garnish with the appropriate herb! Use elderflower liqueur in place of the simple syrup for a lovely, floral French gimlet.
Try muddling fruits in your shaker, like blackberries, raspberries, or blueberries for extra flavor and color. You may also love this blackberry mojito sangria.
For another fresh citrus cocktail you may enjoy, check out this margartia sangria recipe!
Planning a dinner party and need some inspiration?
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