A shot and sweet guide to the best gin cocktails 

Depending on when we get round to post this, it’s either the middle of Jan or the start of Feb, which means you’ve one again attempted to give Dry January a whirl and forego booze, which is because you spent a large dollop of December ruining your work’s Christmas party, consuming booze you wouldn’t touch at any other time of the year, and hurling wine-fueled expletives at your weird Uncle Jim with the dodgy political views.

Of course, like with every year prior, it’s clear that imbibing alcohol isn't something you really want to stop doing. It helps with life, puts a full stop at the end of each tough day in the office, let’s you turn a normal night into a future anecdote and, given all the bars are currently empty, it allows you to order that cocktail that usually takes forever knowing it’ll take a little less forever.

The question is: when faced with a bar stocked with spirits from around the world and a drinks menu longer than the Magna Carta, which cocktail do you choose?

It’s a tough one to answer. Sort of like, which of your children do you love more? Thankfully, on this occasion, there is one elixir that rises above them all: gin.

Sure, bourbon is a close contender -- a spirit that has an almost irresistible connection to balmy southern nights, a gentle breeze carrying scents of jasmine, and the distant sound of jazz music encouraging feet to stomp on tables. But gin offers that little something extra; that delicate pinch of flavour, refreshment, and je ne sais quoi. And to prove this, we’ve handpicked a handful of classic gin cocktails that will help you retain retain your debonair appearance while getting you gloriously drunk (suck it, Dry January!).

The Martini

You can’t have a list of gentleman cocktails and not mention the most famous cocktail recipe of them all: the Martini. It’s one of those rare drinks that conveys a certain gravitas upon all those who partake of it; a drink that allows you personalise it to your nature - extra dry, stirred, shaken or served dirty. It’s a drink with a murky history. A drink made famous by super-spies. A drink known as “the elixir of quietude” (whatever the heck that means?!). It’s a drink that embodies the very essence of what a classic cocktail should be: elegant, refined, wonderfully sophisticated and perfectly balanced.

But while its origins remain shrouded in mystery and speculation, there’s no argument when it comes to creating the perfect Martini.


  • 2.5 oz Gin
  • .5 oz Dry vermouth
  • 1 dash Orange bitters (optional)
  • The garnish: Lemon twist or olives
  • The glass: Cocktail


  • Start by chilling your cocktail glass.
  • Add a handful of ice to either a mixing glass or shaker and then pour in the gin and vermouth.
  • Stir until it is very cold and carefully strain into your chilled cocktail glass.
  • Garnish with a twist of lemon or two olives, whatever your buds like best.

The Vesper

There’s no denying that Bond - James Bond - is famous for ordering a Martini, but the Vesper was the original 007 grog given it was invented and named by Sir Ian Fleming in his 1953 novel, Casino Royale.

"A dry martini," Bond says. "One. In a deep champagne goblet.”

“Oui, monsieur." The barman nods.

“Just a moment. Three measures of Gordon's, one of vodka, half a measure of Kina Lillet. Shake it very well until it's ice-cold, then add a large thin slice of lemon peel. Got it?"

That’s how the off-the-cuff order goes. However, it’s not until his first introduction to the beautiful Vesper Lynd that this cocktail gets its name. And it’s been considered sumptuous, elegant and timeless ever since - although it’s seen a few tweaks over the years. Improvements if you will.


  • 3 parts gin
  • 1 part vodka
  • ¼ oz Lillet Blonde
  • The garnish: Orange peel
  • The glass: Deep champagne goblet.


  • Add all the ingredients to a mixing glass and fill with ice.
  • Throw at least five times between cocktail shakers.
  • Double strain into a chilled champagne goblet (or cocktail glass).
  • Garnish with an orange peel.

The Tom Collins

Nothing is more refreshing than the first sip of this classic number - not even the azure waters of the Amalfi coast slapping against your shins feels this good. It’s the ultimate summer drink, perfect for those days when the rays are beating down on the small of your neck. And don’t just take our word for it because this drink that has made such an impression on ye olde world, someone with the authority to do so actually named the glass after it. Ergo, its unrivalled ability to refresh has been immortalised.

The only downside is the ease in which this tipple slips down, so make sure you have plenty of gin at hand. That said, if you do run out of gin, you can simply tag in your favourite bourbon and treat yourself to a John Collins. It’s the cocktail that just keeps giving.


  • .75 oz Fresh lemon juice
  • .75 oz Simple syrup (one part water, one part sugar)
  • 1.5 oz Gin
  • Club soda
  • The garnish: Lemon wheel and a cherry
  • The glass: Collins or Highball


  • Grab your glass, add the lemon juice, simple syrup, and gin, and then fill with ice.
  • Stir well and then top with soda.
  • Finish it off with a lemon wheel and cherry garnish.


The Negroni

This drink hasn’t just enjoyed a revival over recent years, it has become the undisputed cocktail of the moment; a staple choice among gentlemen gin-sippers the world over - and a big reason for this is the delicacy required in making it perfect. Get it wrong, and the Campari can fall the wrong side of an acquired taste. But get it right and this seductively vermillion cocktail dances along the tightrope of sharp, bitter, aromatically complex and yet, somehow, wonderfully refreshing.

It brings together the bracingly sweet vermouth and the herbaceous gin in such a way it’s impossible to forget your first Negroni. And here’s the best bit: the Negroni has a ratio of 1-1-1, making it a recipe you can master in no time at all.


  • 1 oz Gin
  • 1 oz Sweet Vermouth
  • 1 oz Campari
  • The garnish: Orange half-wheel
  • The glass: A rocks glass


  • Pour all the ingredients into an Old Fashioned rocks glass and then fill with ice.
  • Stir until cold or for roughly 20-25 seconds.
  • For the finishing touch, garnish with an orange half-wheel.

The French 75

Some people believe it’s a crime to use champagne as a mixer and - on the most part - we would probs agree. But not when the other ingredients are of the same high-quality, of which gin is definitely one. It’s what makes this one of the most exceptional gin cocktails out there; one that oozes sophistication and bubbles with grace. It is also one of the most disarming drinks you can ever make a lady for the simple fact this drink dazzles in three effortless ways: the distinguished flavours, the familiar feel of champagne bubbles dancing along the tongue, and the smile-inducing sound of a cork popping.

As a small word of warning though, this drink does get its name from the French artillery guns of the First World War. That is to say, she packs a bit of a bloody punch.


  • .75 oz Fresh lemon juice
  • .75 oz Simple syrup (one part water, one part sugar)
  • 1.5 oz Gin
  • 1 oz expensive Champagne
  • The garnish: Lemon twist
  • The glass: Champagne flute


  • Combine the gin, fresh lemon juice and simple syrup in an ice-heavy cocktail shaker, and then shake well.
  • Once cold, strain your mix into a Champagne flute.
  • For a flying finish, top off with more Champagne and delicately garnish your flute with a long, twisting ribbon of lemon peel.

The Gimlet

One of the most traditional gin cocktails out there is the Gimlet; a thirst-quenching drink that falls into the realm of “sours” thanks to the simple 2:1:1 ratio it shares with similar cocktails, such as the Whiskey Sour and even the Daiquiri. But while the more stalwart traditionalists refuse to abandon the argument that a real Gimlet can only be made with ‘Roses’ lime cordial (which is how the original recipe goes), we much prefer using fresh ingredients, including lime, making it not too dissimilar to a Gin Rickey.


  • 2.5 oz Gin
  • .5 oz Lime juice
  • .5 oz Simple syrup (one part sugar, one part water)
  • The garnish: Lime wheel
  • The glass: Old Fashioned or Cocktail


  • Add all the ingredients to a shaker, fill to the brim with ice and shake, shake, shake.
  • Once cold, strain into an Old Fashioned glass or a chilled cocktail glass and then filled with fresh ice.
  • For a simple but effective garnish, use a lime wheel.

The G&T

Done right - and by right we mean done perfectly - the gin and tonic is nothing short of an alchemic masterpiece; the cocktail version of Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel. It’s what made this simple tipple the most quintessential summer cocktail, bar none. The key is choosing a top-shelf gin - something like a Salcombe Gin - and pairing it with an expensive tonic mixer - a Fever Tree perhaps. Other than that, this tipple is incredibly hard to mess up. It’s a cocktail that will allow you to pour liberally, eyeballing each part of the alchemy safe in the knowledge your taste buds are about to trip the light fantastic.


  • 1.5 oz Bombay Sapphire Gin
  • Fever Tree tonic water
  • The garnish: Lemon and lime wedge
  • The glass: Highball


  • Add the gin to your highball glass and then fill all the way with fresh ice.
  • Once done, top with tonic water and then squeeze the lemon and lime wedges over the drink, drop them into the glass when done.
  • To finish, stir.

For those guys and gents that like a bit of gin, this is the only cocktail guide you will ever need. If, however, you’ve never considered popping “gin guy” on to your CV, or it’s been awhile since you last throw a gin down your throat, it’s probably time you got into a forgiving mood and gave this elixir a second chance.

And now that we’ve talked ourselves into a real thirst, it’s time to quench that feeling with a perfectly made Negroni. Or maybe a classic G&T. Or a Vesper. There’s just too much choice, dammit.

Thanks for reading. For more ideas on how to embrace the endless summer, chase the horizon and keep your skin sun-kissed all year round, follow us on Instagram and Facebook, and sign-up for a naughty-little newsletter below! (you’ll get a cheeky 10% off if you do).

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