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Rosemary’s Gin

November 7, 2011

Gin is a polarizing spirit.

Originally developed for medicinal purposes, Gin garners its prominent flavor from juniper berries which is where the divide begins. To some, the woodsy taste and aroma of a gin cocktail is enough to persuade towards the more neutral vodka. But then there are those that swear by the stuff. Ask a true martini drinker if he prefers Vodka or Gin, and he’ll respond with only “I said a martini, didn’t I?”. Yet, despite being myself a gin fan, I get the other side of the argument. I think my rosemary lemon gin fizz can act as the mediator…

This gin cocktail acts by balancing the bold juniper with the brightness of the lemon and the aromatics of the rosemary. The key is in the creation of the rosemary simple syrup before hand so that there is just enough rosemary and just enough sweetness. This simple syrup method is perfect for extracting flavors. You could use other herbs, citrus peels, or even whole spices to infuse future cocktails. The rosemary version is a great starting place:

Rosemary’s Gin:

2 oz gin

3 oz rosemary simple syrup

1 oz lemon juice

1 dash of lemon bitters

splash of seltzer

In a cocktail shaker mix the first three ingredients until well combined. Pour over ice, add the last two ingredients and garnish with a sprig of rosemary.

Rosemary Simply Syrup:

4 cups water

2 cups sugar

6 rosemary sprigs

In a sauce pan bring the three ingredients to a boil. Let simmer for 10 minutes on med/low heat. Turn the heat off and let sit for 30 minutes. Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator. Many recipes call for equal sugar and water but I prefer to have a more dilute version to control the sweetness.

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