Although it's hard not to think "tonic" when putting together a gin cocktail, there's plenty of other mixers that complement this spirit. Here are five icy juniper berry spirit libations perfect for the dog days of summer.
5. Salty Dog. Wedding salt with grapefruit juice and gin, The Salty Dog is the perfect plural marriage of sour, sugary, and savory. Use pink grapefruit if you like a sweeter potion and yellow grapefruit to up the pucker factor. And, don't forget the salt rim--without it, the drink is just a Greyhound.
4. Negroni. In 2019, the Negroni cocktail will turn 100 years old, but there's no need to postpone celebrating. Boasting a sexy scarlet hue thanks to the inclusion of vermouth, the negroni isn't sickly sweet as this color might suggest. Rather, the combination of gin and campri give it an earthy bite that is only mildly tempered by the sugar of the vermouth.
This story continues on the next page.
3. Tom Collins. Sprightly, citrusy Tom Collins is the perfect poolside companion for a late August afternoon. All you need on hand is the gin, really, as the lemon juice, sugar, and carbonated water can be pilfered from the snack bar.
2. White Lady. A White Lady definitely eases any lingering anxieties about consuming raw eggs by showcasing the glorious texture and milky color that emerges when immersing gin, cointreau, and lemon juice in egg whites. Served straight up (and preferably in a chilled glass), a White Lady is frigid and a bit off-putting at first sip but warms up eventually.
1. Vesper. Though clearly partial to regular shaken martinis, James Bond has been known to create his own cocktail and his best invention by far is the Vesper (3 ounces of gin, 1 ounce of vodka, and a splash of Lillet). You may feel like a covert agent drinking this cocktail; however, given that its only non-alcoholic component is a wisp of lemon peel, sip slowly or else you'll be spilling all your secrets.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.