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Gimlet ratio?

Having been on a bit of a gimlet kick lately, I was suprised to stumble across this recipe on Chowhound: http://www.chow.com/recipes/10255

Not that Raymond Chandler has the final word on mixology, but in "The Long Goodbye" he indicated that a proper gimlet is equal parts gin and Rose's Lime Juice. The Rose's bottle advocates a 3:2 ratio. This recipe calls for 1/4 ounce of Rose's to 2 ounces of gin, or 8:1.

Ever open to new ideas, I gave it a try. And IMHO this just isn't a gimlet. The Rose's is perceptible, but is an accent note rather than a major player in the flavor of the drink. Sort of like the lime in a gin and tonic.

Carried to an extreme, I suppose that Churchill gimlets (gin without lime juice) could be the next rage. But how do we tell them apart from Churchill martinis (gin without vermouth)? If you just want a glass of gin, why not ask for it?

Any other gimlet lovers care to weigh in on this one?

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  1. chow recipe is not a gimlet. too weak on rose's. i follow rose's recipe ratio.

    1. Do you have to use Rose's Lime Juice for the gimlet? Does Rose's have extra sugar added to the lime juice? Or, could you just squeeze up some limes?
      I am new to the gimlet world!

      3 Replies
      1. re: stellamystar

        i guess you could squeeze limes and add sugar, but rose's has a distinctive flavor.
        i think the recipe in this link is a bit too dry, but it has some historical tidbits accompanying it: http://www.sptimes.com/2007/01/10/Tas...
        ditto: http://www.amazon.com/gp/richpub/sylt...

        1. re: stellamystar

          You have to use a lime cordial which is sort of like a lime simple syrup. Rose's is the original lime cordial.

          1. re: stellamystar

            Personally, i prefer a 5:1 ratio of gin to Roses, with the juice of about a quarter lime added. It tastes fresher than the Rose's only. It's a little off topic, but I've found a delightful alteration that I learned from the bartender at PokPok Thai in Portland OR. He uses Amarena cherry syrup(that the cherries come packed in) instead of about 2/3 of the Rose's, adds a little fresh lime juice and garnishes with an amerena cherry. It produces a lovely pink glow,... and looks nice in the glass too! (rimshot here) It has a little more complex flavor than the plain jane one.

          2. Personally I don't like Gimlets, specifically the lime cordial.That said, the Rose's cordial is intrinsic to the gimlet.

            The Savoy Cocktail Book suggests equal parts gin : Rose's, stirred
            Gary Regan suggests 2-1/2 oz gin or vodka : 3/4 oz lime cordial (Rose's), stirred
            Dale DeGroff suggests 2-1/2oz gin : 1/2 oz Rose's, shaken
            William Grimes suggests 2 oz gin (or vodka) : 1/4 oz Rose's, shaken
            The Bartender's Black Book suggests 3-1/2 oz gin or vodka : 1/4 to 1 oz Rose's, stirred
            The Ultimate A to Z Bar Guide suggests 2 oz gin : 1/2 oz Rose's, shaken

            3 Replies
            1. re: JMF

              Thanks everyone! I will give Rose's a try.

              1. re: JMF

                I make mine somewhere between the Regan and the Black book. A lot depends on the fruitiness of the gin and who I am mixing for.

                Slightly off topic, one of my favorite summer drinks is 3 oz of Tanqueray and the juice of a small lime over ice. It might be too tart for most people, but I find it very refreshing to drink under the sun.

                1. re: AManHastoEat

                  Fresh lemon juice is lovely too ... and if you add a little Ginger Beer/Ginger Ale, then you have a Gin Buck.

              2. I know Rose's is the accepted way of making a gimlet but I find the drink too bland. I make a gimlet using equal parts freshly squeezed lime juice to gin and sugar. Add enough sugar to the lime juice to taste good, add the gin, shake with ice, & serve up.

                8 Replies
                1. re: TimeMachine

                  do you use regular, granulated sugar or powdered?

                  1. re: stellamystar

                    use superfine sugar, so it dissolves well. or use plain old granulated sugar that you have processed to fine. powdered sugar has cornstarch, typically.

                  2. re: TimeMachine

                    That sounds good. Simple sugar (syrup) works too. Only if it were impossible to get fresh limes would I resort to Rose's.
                    Gimlet: One part fresh lime juice, one part triple sec or good stuff like Gran Gala, two parts gin.
                    Like a margarita only with Gin and no salt!

                    1. re: atheorist

                      "Like a margarita only with Gin and no salt!"

                      Also, not a Gimlet.

                      1. re: invinotheresverde

                        I'd second that. For me a Gimlet is defined by it's use of Rose's Lime. I won't even use another Lime Cordial. I tried making homemade lime cordial and it was certainly quite good but the resulting cocktail wasn't a Gimlet.

                        My $0.02

                        1. re: ShadowedOne

                          I agree. I don't make them at home, but am always disappointed when I get one at some upscale place that insists on using fresh lime juice. It's not the same.

                        2. re: invinotheresverde

                          Well OK. I will stop calling it a gimlet. And drink what I please.

                          1. re: atheorist

                            Always drink what you please, of course.

                    2. The way you tell a Churchill gimlet from a Churchill martini is that for the martini you glance at the bottle of vermouth from across a crowded room, while for the gimlet you do so with the Rose's Lime.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester

                        i find it unbelivable how often i look drink recipes up on chowhound + they're totally wrong (meaning: totally different from the standard recipe)

                      2. Gin and lime juice is not a Gimlet. It's like saying, "I like martinis, but I make them with gin and a dry pinot grigio that I mix with some herbs and a touch of brandy, but it's still a martini because it has gin, and wine that has been fortified. " A Gimlet uses lime cordial. If you don't like lime cordial and gin, then you don't like Gimlets. If you make it with something other lime cordial you're making a different drink. It may be a delicious drink you're making, but it's not a Gimlet.

                        6 Replies
                        1. re: The Big Crunch

                          Well, I have a "Fresh Gimlet" I put on the menu in two places I work with. Yes, it isn't a traditional Gimlet because I really dislike Rose's. And yes, it tastes great. It may be a different cocktail, but...

                          I also make a great lime cordial to use in a traditional Gimlet, that blows away Rose's. I still haven't totally nailed down the recipe for the Lime Cordial, but I use lime zest simmered in simple syrup and cut with lime juice, then clarified.

                          Fresh Gimlet
                          2 oz. Gordon's or Tanqueray Gin
                          1 oz. fresh Lime juice
                          3/4 oz. simple syrup
                          1 dash Angostura bitters

                          Shake on ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon peel, twisted over the top, then placed in the cocktail.

                          1. re: JMF

                            The Mrs likes Hendricks Gimlets, but does not like Rose's Lime in them either, what would you say are good ratios for that gin?

                            1. re: Dapuma

                              I would say start with the same amounts as I list. It's a pretty traditional ratio for many cocktails. The one dash of Angostura really works, but two is too much. By dash I mean exactly a scant 1/8 tsp., not just a dash from the bottle. I have the bartenders use a bottle with an eye dropper and I measured out now much 1/8 tsp. fills the dropper.

                              1. re: JMF

                                thanks JMF, I have some rhubarb bitters that only have an eye dropper, i was wondering what one or two dashes would actually be, i am going to give that Bourbon recipe a shot this weekend so 1/4 teaspoon = 2 dashes is very helpful

                                Next time i make her a gimlet I will give it a shot with the Angostura and see what she thinks

                                1. re: JMF

                                  The Mrs loved the Gimlet, we ended up going out afterwards to another well known place for cocktails and she had their gimlet and she said the one i made was better - so that is always nice to hear :) - The touch of Angostura is really a nice addition

                                  They also shook it instead of stirred so there was ice shards all over it, but don't get me started there

                                  I don't know why i keep asking for mai tai's either because I asked if they could make a decent one and i got another in a collins glass with an orange garnish (sigh)

                                2. re: Dapuma

                                  So, she likes a two ingredient cocktail but hates half the ingredients? Why not make her a Gin Rickey, which is sort've like a Gimlet but uses lime juice instead of Rose's and tops the thing with soda water? A Gin Rickey is one of my absolute favorite ways to enjoy gin, far more than a Gimlet, and IMO works quite well with Hendrick's, though I prefer it with Boodles.

                            2. Wow, I cannot even begin to imagine how syrupy and sweet a 1:1 ratio Gimlet would be, and even a 3:2. I would just be explicit with the server/bartender how much Rose's Lime Juice you like in yours. I don't drink Gin Gimlets, usually Vodka ones if I do, and I prefer them closer to an 8:1 ratio personally.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: Atomic76

                                Gin versus vodka makes a big difference here. If you're drinking a gin gimlet, you are drinking a liquor that actually has a strong and distinct flavor and interacts with the Rose's to produce a new and distinct flavored cocktail. A vodka gimlet features a flavorless booze that basically will just taste like Rose's lime juice with an alcohol kick. To me, they're two entirely different cocktails.

                                A 2.5 oz London dry gin to .75 ounce Rose's gimlet is a wonderfully smooth, sweet/tart, refreshing, balanced and somewhat sophisticated tasting drink, and not syrupy in the slightest. I recommend Boodles and stirring for around 40 seconds when using homemade ice cubes.

                                1. re: The Big Crunch

                                  Thanks! I will have to give that a try sometime. I enjoy gin from time to time, I just never had it as a gimlet before.