Blackberry Ginger and Gin

Floral, citrus, and spice flavors dominate this refreshing simple cocktail.

Ingredients

  • 4 oz Blackberry Ginger Ale
  • 2 oz Hendricks Midsummer Solstice Gin
  • 1/2 oz lemon juice
  • Lemon twist

Optional ingredients

  • Additional citrus fruit of your choosing
  • Lavender soda
  • Lavender sprig
  • Cucumber slice
  • Shaved ginger
  • Ginger beer

Putting it together

This cocktail is built in a stirring glass, stirred, and strained over new ice, but it can also be built in the drinking glass.

  1. Add gin and lemon juice to glass
  2. Stir with ice
  3. Add to a new glass with ice
  4. Add blackberry ginger ale to your liking
  5. Garnish with a lemon twist, expressed.

Many hear "gin" and immediately grimace. It invokes thoughts of grandma's pungent perfume, slushies somehow made of pine cones, and the holiday section of JoAnn Fabrics.

Can you taste it? That bitter and overbearing garbage juice?

I get it. The first time I smelled gin I was eighteen, fresh out of high school, and immediately asked why I didn't just chug the ten year old bottle of cologne on my shelf.

Throw away all your previous thoughts on gin. Gin has a wide range, much like wine. Gin is simply a clear spirit distilled from malt or grain that is infused or flavored with botanicals, typically juniper.

People often say "Oh, I don't drink *insert liquor here*" because they tried it once, someone poured them a cheap or poorly made drink, and they hated. This gin cocktail is a great place to start for someone who doesn't typically drink gin.

Hendricks Summer Solstice is a limited release gin with a different flavor profile than your typical gin. For starters, Hendricks is one of the only gins that uses cucumber, which is why it is one of my favorites. I tend to lean more towards botanical and fruit gins than purely juniper driven gins (though I don't fully discriminate.)

Summer Solstice has a very floral forward profile, with some noticeable citrus and even berry flavors, and subtle sweetness. It's more approachable than your average gin, especially because juniper is barely detectable. Many wouldn't even identify it as gin.

Blackberry is a natural pairing for this gin. It's sweetness and color match perfectly. Gin and ginger is a common two part drink, as is gin and tonic. Lucky for us, Canada Dry makes a Blackberry Ginger Ale ready to go.

It's certainly possible to take a ginger ale or ginger beer and mix in some blackberry juice or even make your own with real ginger, blackberries, sugar, and soda water, but I find it far easier to simply buy a 2-liter at the grocery store.

Lemon adds to the nose of this very floral drink, accenting the citrus present and adding a bit of contrast for the eye as well.

I find this drink refreshing, but still savory as the complexity of the gin leaves much to be discovered. So be a bit adventurous and start discovering.