How to Make a Gimlet Cocktail Drink – Recipe, Mocktail and Variations

Last Updated May 4, 2021
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An old school classic cocktail, and one of the easiest drinks to make. If you love gin then the Gimlet drink is one to try. The Gimlet is light green in color with a punchy sharp lime flavor – a drink to sip and savor.

Gimlet cocktail drink

How to make a Gimlet Cocktail

Gimlet Recipe

  • 60ml Gin
  • 30ml Lime juice
  • 20ml Simple Syrup
  • Lime garnish

Gimlet Cocktail Equipment

Making a Gimlet instructions

1. Add ice to the cocktail shaker
2. Pour in the gin and sweetened lime juice and give a good shake
3. Strain the drink into the cocktail glass
4. Add a slice of lime.

Gimlet Cocktail History

The main theory that seems to be excepted by mixologists is the Gimlet cocktail was a drink that came about to fight scurvy in the British Navy. One school of thought is that Surgeon Rear-Admiral Sir Thomas Gimlette (hence the cocktail’s name) use to recommend this drink to his shipmates as an anti-scurvy medication. Another, more likely explanation to how the Gimlet got its name is it was named after a tool used to pierce barrels – a gimlet.

The reason why the Royal Navy would be carrying lime on board was due to the 1867 Merchant Shipping Act. This specified that all British ships must carry limes in order to combat scurvy. This wasn’t an easy law to follow, as limes would spoil on long sea journeys. Thankfully for the sailor’s this problem was solved by Lauchlin Rose, who discovered and patented that fact that you could preserve lime juice by adding sugar to it rather than alcohol. He called this drink Rose’s Lime Juice and is still used to make Gimlet cocktail drinks today.

Gimlet Mocktail Recipe

If you plan to make a Gimlet mocktail at home, opposed to buying one at a bar, then you can make a non-alcoholic gin simply by infusing the ingredients of gin in water. So let juniper berries, some citrus peel and herbs soak in water over night and then strain this mixture before using it.

Another way, a more costly way, but with less effort is buy an alcohol-free gin from a company like ArKay.

Gimlet Variations and Tips

It is said that on Royal Navy ships the sailors had their Gimlet with rum and the officers had theirs with gin. A popular variation is therefore to replace the gin with rum (also vodka is also a popular replacement).

Rose’s lime juice is just sweetened lime. So many bars will often give you fresh lime juice with either a splash of simple syrup or soda.

The Gimlet originally had 50% gin and 50% lime juice. This has changed over the years to suit modern tastes. So feel free to play around with the mixture to match your preferred taste.

Great Gifts for Gimlet Cocktail Drinkers

Amazon has a great selection of gifts for cocktail drinkers. Below are some they offer that will be good for people that drink Gimlet cocktails
Cocktail Glass

Cocktail Glass. Buy from Amazon

Rose's Lime Juice

Rose’s Lime. Buy from Amazon

Boston Cocktail Shaker

Cocktail Shaker. Buy from Amazon

About Brian Hamilton

Brian Hamilton is a BBQ grilling enthusiast and has the expertise and knowledge to have created Brian specializes in all methods of grilling and bbq equipment and is a self-proclaimed backyard Pitmaster. Qualified at degree level he gained a BEng Degree in Engineering in the United Kingdom. Brian is a well-traveled and cultured individual and has lived and worked in several countries in Europe and has gained quite a reputation amongst peers for his skills and commitment on the grilling circuit.

How to Make a Gimlet Cocktail Drink – Recipe, Mocktail and Variations

2 thoughts on “How to Make a Gimlet Cocktail Drink – Recipe, Mocktail and Variations”

  1. I’ve seen Gimlet drinks done in so many different ways. From the alcohol being gin, vodka, rum or tequila. And the juice being lime, cucumber, grapefruit, strawberry, cherry or tonic. Sometimes on the rocks and other times garnished with fresh basil or mint.


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