Drinks

Gimlet – Part 3: History and recipe

Gimlet.

When did the Gimlet originate? What are the myths? Are they even true? One may harbour justified doubts. Everything points to the fact that 19th century sailors did not drink a Gimlet, even though this is often claimed, because it probably only came into being in the 1920s. We also go into the correct recipe for a Gimlet. The historical recipe must not be used.

30 ml Hayman’s Royal Dock Gin (alternatively 40 ml gin with approx. 45 vol%)
15 ml lime juice from the bottle
10 ml sugar syrup (2:1)
15 ml water.

Preparation: Pour into a tumbler with a large piece of ice and stir briefly.

The Gimlet

What is the commonly reported story of the Gimlet? There are various stories about this. The most common is that the Gimlet was named after Sir Thomas Desmond Gimlette, General of the Royal Navy’s Medical Department. He recommended mixing lime cordial with gin so that the lime cordial, which helps against scurvy, is easier to take. Some say, however, that the name derives from the wooden drill, also called gimlet, which was used to drill holes in barrels. After Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial was patented and available in 1867, it would have been possible for the British Navy to carry it on board, and so the first Gimlets are said to have been drunk in the British Royal Navy towards the end of the 19th century. This story has some similarities with the origin of the Gin & Tonic, which is said to have been invented and drunk as a malaria prophylaxis. The legend goes on to say that the common sailors on board a ship drank rum, but the officers drank gin, and the latter mixed it with equal parts of Rose’s Lime Cordial, thus inventing the Gimlet. Many people therefore swear that there is only one way to make a Gimlet, and that is with Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial and gin, classically in equal parts. [2-58] [2-59] [2-60] [15] [16] [17] [21-#17]

What are we to make of this? Let’s take a closer look at the individual aspects of this legend.

Lime Juice as Provisions

Under the Amended Merchant Shipping Act of 1868, any lime juice to be used as ship’s provisions had to be officially inspected and if it passed the test, it was taken to a bonded warehouse. There, 15% proof rum or brandy was added to it and it was then bottled and boxed. [18-709] However, the preservation with alcohol thus prescribed also means that, at least according to this regulation, Rose’s Lime Juice could not be permitted as a ship’s victual. This may have been the case in later times, and it would still be necessary to research whether and from when this happened.

Cargo space was valuable on ships. There is always talk of making a Gimlet with Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial, not Rose’s Lime Juice. The former, as we have deduced, contained about 36% lime juice and sugar, the latter was about 50% lime juice. So beyond that, the question arises as to why the Cordial should have been stored with only 35% lime juice. Pure lime juice, even if mixed with alcohol, is much more space-saving. For this reason, too, the use of cordial as a ship’s provision seems to make little sense.

Rather, it seems likely that both products, Lime Juice and Lime Juice Cordial, were products for the end consumer rather than for the navy. Nevertheless, it is not unlikely that another Lime Juice that met the legal requirements was supplied to the navy by L. Rose & Company, as they had been in this business since 1857. [20-Rose’s Lime Juice]

The suggestion that the Gimlet was an invention to make taking lime juice more palatable also lacks any historical basis. As we proved in the post about Punch, Punch was a drink of the seafarers and was already in use in the early 17th century. The first written reference dates back to 1632. Despite its name, the Gimlet itself is nothing other than a Gin Punch, because it consists of gin, water, lime juice and sugar. Punch has been a widely known and enjoyed drink since its inception.

Sir Thomas Desmond Gimlette

It seems, however, that this Gin Punch, which is prepared with Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial, was given the name Gimlet at some point. Whether this was named after Sir Thomas Desmond Gimlette, or after the wooden drill used to make holes in casks, however, is not clear. Neither the obituary of Sir Thomas Desmond Gimlette published in The Times on 6 October mentions that he is said to have invented the Gimlet, nor Who’s Who. [2-60] [18]

A drink of the seafarers?

Anzeige - The Connoisseur. January 1943, page 174.
Advertisement – The Connoisseur. January 1943, page 174. [12]

As already pointed out, Lauchlan Rose’s Lime Juice or Lime Juice Cordial were not, at least initially, permitted as ship’s provisions. Punch may have been a favourite drink of sailors since ancient times, but they would not have drunk or known a Gimlet. No contemporary evidence can be found to suggest this. Even the Oxford Dictionary of 1933 does not know the term Gimlet for a Gin Punch. [14-166] If the Gimlet had actually originated in a maritime environment, there would have to be evidence of it somewhere. But there is none.

Anzeige - The Illustrated London News. 15. May 1954, page 816.
Anzeige – The Illustrated London News. 15. May 1954, page 816. [13]

Schweppes itself writes that in the 1930s the popularity of “Gin and Rose’s” succeeded in making Rose’s profitable again, and that the cheerful advertising campaign with Gerald and Hawkins, which lasted well into the post-war period, helped. [19-101] Mind you, they write “Gin and Rose’s”, not “Gimlet”. This is also how it is written in the advertisements, and interestingly it does not say “Gin and Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial” but “Gin and Rose’s Lime Juice”; [12] [13] however, the first recipes for a Gimlet that appeared in bar books specifically call for the Cordial. One would almost think that the Gimlet was not meant in these advertisements.

Advertisement - Sports Illustrated. 28. March 1960, page 89.
Advertisement – Sports Illustrated. 28. March 1960, page 89. [11]

However, the more recent advertisements, which no longer refer to “Gin and Rose’s” but to a Gimlet, also state that the gin should be mixed with Rose’s Lime Juice, as two advertisements from 1960 show. [10] [11]

Advertisement - Sports Illustrated. 12. December 1960, page 2.
Advertisement – Sports Illustrated. 12. December 1960, page 2. [10]

As this evidence shows, the term “Gimlet” for a Gin Punch with Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial or Rose’s Lime Juice cannot be one that originates from maritime seafaring. Nor does it necessarily seem to come from the manufacturer himself. The sources do not allow any other conclusion.

Advertising Age. 14. December 1959, page 72
Advertising Age. 14. December 1959, page 72 [3-72]

Nevertheless, we have found an advertisement from 1959 that does mention a Gimlet. [3-72]

It should also be mentioned that the mixture of gin and lime juice was apparently not a particularly favoured mixture at the end of the 19th century. The book “Drinks of the World”, published in London and New York in 1892, succinctly notes that it is a strange mixture:

James Mew & John Ashton: Drinks of the World. 1892, page 361-362.
James Mew & John Ashton: Drinks of the World. 1892, page 361-362. [9-361] [9-362]

In addition to strange compounds known in various parts of this country, such as Gin and Lime Juice, Whiskey or Rum and Milk, Brandy and Port, a drink said to have originated in Lancashire, Dog’s Nose, Shandy Gaff, etc., etc., may be mentioned Ethyl or Methylated Spirits, a beverage which, like ether in Ireland, has of late years advanced considerably in public estimation. It has the two advantages of being cheap and heady.[9-361] [9-362]

So it seems that the combination of gin and lime was not particularly appreciated.

All this, combined with the fact that the name and recipe for a Gimlet, consisting of equal parts of gin and Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial, probably first appeared in Harry McElhone’s book “”Harry” of Ciro’s ABC of Mixing Cocktails” in 1923, [2-60] [2-61] may serve as evidence that it was by no means a well-known sailor’s drink. The author writes that the Gimlet was very popular in the navy, but this cannot be verified. Perhaps he only meant that the Gin Punch was very popular, since the Gimlet is basically nothing else?

The assumption that the Gimlet did not come into being until the 1920s is therefore correct.

This is also supported by the memoirs of the US admiral Albert Gleaves. In 1920 he was in China and wrote: “At the club I was given a new drink called a gimlet – a mild affair of gin. lime juice and water. Velvet at Vladivostok, gimlets at Tientsin – names to write in my diary and remember afterwards.[5-242]

However, these memoirs were not published until 1985; the admiral, who was born in 1858 and commanded the Asiatic Fleet, retired in 1922 and died in 1937. [4] Unfortunately, it is not noted on which sources his records are based. Did the really note in his diary that he drank a Gimlet in 1920, or did he just remember it later? Fiction and truth are often close together. But leaving this aside, he also writes that it was a new drink, which suggests that the Gimlet originated in the 1920s or shortly before.

Lime Juice as an ingredient for mixed drinks

Anonymus: Drinks, & how to make them. Probably about 1879, page 12.
Anonymus: Drinks, & how to make them. Probably about 1879, page 12. [8-12]

But Rose’s Lime Juice was not only used as an ingredient in the Gimlet. For the sake of completeness, it is worth mentioning that lime juice was used as an ingredient in mixed drinks as early as 1879. In that year, the London firm Yeatman & Co published a book with recipes for their Calisayine Cocktail Bitter, one assumes, and in it there is a recipe for Mr. Mantalini’s “Demnition Delicious”, which is prepared with a tablespoon of Lime Juice Cordial, half a teaspoon of Calisayine Bitters and seltzer.[8-12]

Macmillan's magazine. Vol. 34. Cambridge, August 1876, page 385.
Macmillan’s magazine. Vol. 34. Cambridge, August 1876, page 385. [7-385]

This is not very different from the usual claims to prepare a fizzy soft drink from Lime Juice Cordial and water, as the advertisements from that time suggest. [7-385] This is not surprising, because such a mixture is basically nothing more than a lemonade made with lime syrup.

Apart from that, however, there are hardly any drinks in which Lime Juice Cordial is to be used.

The recipe

Raymond Chandler wrote in his 1935 Philip Marlowe novel “The Long Goodbye”: [6] “A real gimlet is half gin and half Rose’s lime juice and nothing else“. [2-71] [21-#17 Gimlet] As deduced before, this will certainly have meant Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial. Is this correct and does this rule still apply?

Yes and no. Let us first look at the historical recipes. They state it like this. One has to use equal parts gin and Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial. But it is not long before the first recipes with an increased proportion of gin appear, for example in 1935 with Gustav Selmer Fougner, who already uses two parts gin to one part Cordial.

The reason for this change in quantity can only be guessed at. It may have been a personal preference, or perhaps it was due to a change in the recipe of Rose’s Lime-Juice. We cannot answer this clearly from a historical point of view, but can only use our own experiments as a basis.

So let’s start with the description of our series of experiments. As we have explained, Rose’s Lime Juice is sweeter today than it was originally. So we have to reduce the sugar content. There is not enough lime juice in proportion to the sugar it contains. This has to be added, but at the same time additional water has to be added so that the lime content in the mixture is 35% again. However, you must not use fresh lime juice, but lime juice from the bottle; fresh lime juice has the wrong aroma here. The result of these considerations: Mix 25 ml Rose’s Lime Juice with 5 ml bottled lime juice and add 15 ml water. This mixture still corresponds to Rose’s Lime Juice in terms of character, but with less sweetness.

A Gimlet made with this mixture consists of 45 ml gin, 25 ml Rose’s Lime Juice, 5 ml bottled lime juice and 15 ml water. This results in a more balanced drink; it still contains that typical flavour that is characteristic of Rose’s Lime Juice. Those who enjoy it will be happy with this recipe.

Please forgive our frankness, but this variant does not quite meet our taste. We think that Rose’s Lime Juice tastes a little too intense and almost penetrating. We cannot say why this is so. Perhaps lime oil is added when diluting the lime juice concentrate and then too much of it? It would be interesting to ask whether Rose’s Lime Juice has always tasted like this. One might assume so, since Charles H. Baker wrote in 1946 in his book “The Gentleman’s Companion” about Rose’s Lime Syrup and Lime Cordial: “The former is a pungent oil-of-lime syrup.” [1-187]

But whether this taste was already present in 1868, we do not know. In any case, Charles H. Baker’s solution to the problem was to use only half a teaspoon of Rose’s Lime Syrup or Roses Lime Cordial to a jigger of Old Tom gin, along with a teaspoon of sugar syrup.  [1-38] [2-65] [2-66]

Comparable may be the reason for all other recipes handed down, in which the gin content was increased compared to the Lime Juice. The intention was to reduce the influence of this somewhat intrusive flavour. Others find a solution to the problem in making their own lime syrup. [2-68] [2-69]

For us, at least, we have tried a different variant by mixing lime juice from the bottle with sugar and water. This is a permissible alternative in a historical context; however, fresh lime juice should not be used, because it results in a completely different drink character, practically just a Gin-&-Lime-Sour.

For our homemade “Lime Juice” we use lime and sugar syrup (2:1) in a ratio of 3:2 and top up with water, so that the lime content is also 35%. We use 15 ml lime juice, 10 ml sugar syrup and 15 ml water (the correct amount of water is actually 17.8 ml). Mixed with 40 ml of gin, this also makes a tasty Gimlet. If you use an overproof gin, you should reduce the gin content to 30 ml so that the alcohol content remains roughly the same; otherwise the gin becomes too dominant.

Now it’s time to talk about the Sour. We prepare a Gin Sour from 80 ml gin, 30 ml lemon juice and 20 ml sugar syrup (2:1). This is shaken, the melted water is about 35%, so about 45 ml. Now, how does a Gin Sour compare to a Gimlet? A Gimlet consists (extrapolated) of 80 ml gin, 30 ml lime juice, 20 ml sugar syrup (2:1). To this is added 30 ml of water. This makes a Gimlet practically comparable to a somewhat stronger Gin Sour. However, there is a good reason for this. The Gimlet is not shaken, but only stirred briefly in the tumbler with a large piece of ice; however, since it is served on ice, the additional melting water gradually enters the drink, so that it must not be poured into the glass too weakly at first in order to avoid too much dilution.

That is an important insight. We have already discussed the legend of the origin of the Gimlet. We came to the conclusion that in the 19th century a ” Gimlet ” was probably unknown – under this name – in the navy, and that the naming only took place in more recent times. Nevertheless, it must be admitted that sailors knew and prepared Punch as early as the 17th century, and that it was quite possible that they prepared a Gin Punch in the 19th century, especially as Lime Juice was compulsory as a provision. However, this was almost certainly not Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial, which contained only 35% lime juice. Cargo space was precious, so they certainly had another product on board. In any case, they knew this drink as a Gin Punch, not a Gimlet, and of course prepared without ice.

As an experiment shows, however, a Gimlet is not a classic Sour in today’s sense, because it uses preserved lime juice, not fresh. You only need to compare it once with a Gin Sour prepared with fresh lime juice. The aroma is very different. We therefore advise against using fresh lime juice in any case when preparing a Gimlet. If you want to use fresh lime juice, prepare a Punch. However, we would like to point out that a Gin Sour with lemon juice tastes much better to us.

After these reflections, we would like to make a guess: Perhaps when making a Gimlet, one has moved away from mixing equal parts of Gin and Lime Juice because Rose’s Lime Juice has changed? Did they do it to tame the aromatics or reduce the sugar content? At any rate, this could explain why the gin content was increased. However, such a change results in a completely different character of the drink, and such a change does not suit the Gimlet.

We recommend sticking to equal parts gin and lime juice, using your own lime juice. This is also the view of other authors, and so let Richard Godwin have the final word: “So Coca-Cola Enterprises says you should make your Gimlets with Rose’s. So does Raymond Chandler: ‘A real gimlet is half gin and half Rose’s lime juice and nothing else’, he counselled in The Long Goodby, which is really one long ode to the Gimlet. I’m not so sure. I’m not sure that what those seadogs drank woulld have contained some of the E-numbers I saw listed on the Rose’s label. I’m less convinced that Chandler’s proportions are ideal given the amount of sugar in the present-day cordial too. That would give you a Grimlet. So how should you make a Gimlet? Well, you could go the fresh lime route and make a Gin Sour only with lime instead of lemon. I wouldn’t advice against that course of action. A Fresh Lime Gimlet can be exquisite. However, I feel we would be getting away from the essence of the drink. It is supposed to have a certain cordial-like quality, surely … just maybe not involving all those chemicals. No, the best course of action is to channel old father Rose and make your own.[21-#17 Gimlet]

Sources
  1. Charles H. Baker, Jr.: The Gentleman’s Companion. Being an Exotic Drinking Book or, Around the World With Jigger, Beaker and Flask. Including: A personally collected Regiment of World-Famous Lively Liquid Masterpieces from Greater & Lesser Ports of Orient & Occident, & the South Seas. Not Forgetting: The Proper & Civilized Service of Beverages with Foods, together with Proven Formulae for Home Construction of Certain Bitters, Wines, Meads & Cordials; a Meaty Kernel of Advice for Those Departing for the Bars, & in the Last a Sextet of Temperance Delights, & a Platoon of Picker-Uppers of Proven Worth & Discretion. New York, Crown Publishers, 1946.
  2. Paul Clarke: History and Character of the Gimlet. In: Mixologist. The Journal of the American Cocktail, Seite 57-72. ISBN 0-9760937-0-7. Mixellany, New York, 2005.
  3. https://archive.org/details/sim_advertising-age_1959-12-14_30_50/page/n71/mode/2up?q=%22moscow+mule%22 Advertising Age. 14. December 1959.
  4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Gleaves Albert Gleaves.
  5. https://books.google.de/books?id=Usd6HyZhNb0C&pg=PA242&dq=%22new+drink+called+a+gimlet%22&hl=de&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjOiLeEsJjuAhWWraQKHcv7DiUQ6AEwAXoECAAQAg#v=onepage&q=%22new%20drink%20called%20a%20gimlet%22&f=false The Admiral. The Memoirs of Albert Gleaves, USN. Pasadena, California, 1985.
  6. https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_Marlowe Philip Marlowe.
  7. https://archive.org/details/macmillansmagaz07unkngoog/page/n415/mode/2up?q=%22lime+juice+cordial%22 Macmillan’s magazine. Vol. 34. Cambridge, August 1876.
  8. https://archive.org/details/b30479885/page/12/mode/2up?q=%22lime+juice+cordial%22 Anonymus: Drinks, & how to make them. Yeatman’s calisayine cocktail bitters, the prince of pick-me-ups. (London, 1879?)
  9. https://archive.org/details/ofworlddrinks00mewjrich/page/360/mode/2up?q=%22gin+and+lime%22 James Mew & John Ashton: Drinks of the World. London, 1892.
  10. https://archive.org/details/Sports-Illustrated-1960-12-12/page/n5/mode/2up?q=gin Sports Illustrated. 12. Dezember 1960, page 2.
  11. https://archive.org/details/Sports-Illustrated-1960-03-28/page/n99/mode/2up?q=gin Sports Illustrated. 28. March 1960, page 89.
  12. https://archive.org/details/connoisseurill00jalond/page/n91/mode/2up?q=gin The Connoisseur. January 1943, Seite 174.
  13. https://archive.org/details/illustratedlondomay15v134unse_r0t5/page/816/mode/2up?q=gin The Illustrated London News. 15. May 1954, page 816.
  14. https://archive.org/details/in.ernet.dli.2015.120828/page/n785/mode/2up?q=gimlet The Oxford English Dictionary. Vol. IV, F-G. Oxford, 1933.
  15. https://www.diffordsguide.com/encyclopedia/445/cocktails/gimlet-cocktail Gimlet cocktail. By Simon Difford.
  16. https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gimlet Gimlet.
  17. https://mixology.eu/gimlet-cocktail-rezept/ Das geht besser! Der Gimlet. By Gabriel Daun, 1. June 2019.
  18. https://archive.org/details/b19974760M0119/page/708/mode/2up?q=%22lime+juice+cordial%22 The chemist and druggist. London, 14. November 1868.
  19. Douglas A. Simmons: Schweppes. The first 200 years. ISBN 0-86254-104-2. Springwood Books, London, 1983.
  20. https://books.google.de/books?id=r8GbDwAAQBAJ&pg=PT170&lpg=PT170&dq=%22lauchlan+Rose%22+%22patent%22&source=bl&ots=58kGUxo8xT&sig=ACfU3U2kEswd3M0kmxAcYP0sAnOC4SZzBA&hl=de&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjto-aYkvXtAhXwN-wKHZYuClEQ6AEwEXoECBQQAg#v=onepage&q=%22lauchlan%20Rose%22%20%22patent%22&f=false Jack Gillon: Secret Leith. 2019.
  21. https://books.google.de/books?id=zv2RCgAAQBAJ&pg=PT88&lpg=PT88&dq=%22lauchlan+Rose%22+%22patent%22&source=bl&ots=H4zerXRZRn&sig=ACfU3U2w3wSDbJoLX9cXsEXrOZj4IZH6_g&hl=de&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjto-aYkvXtAhXwN-wKHZYuClEQ6AEwEHoECBMQAg#v=onepage&q=%22lauchlan%20Rose%22%20%22patent%22&f=false Richard Godwin: The Spirits. A Guide to Modern Cocktailing. 2015.
Gimlet.
Gimlet.

Historical recipes

1923 Harry McElhone: „Harry oc Ciro’s ABC“ of Mixing Cocktails. Seite 33. Gimlet.

1/2 Coates’ Plymouth Gin, 1/2 Rose’s Lime Juice
Cordial.
Stir, and serve in same glass. Can be iced if
desired.
A very popular beverage in the Navy.

1926 Harry McElhone: Harry’s ABC of Mixing Cocktails. Seite 43. Gimlet.

1/2 Burrough’s Plymouth Gin, 1/2 Rose’s Lime Juice
Cordial.
Stir, and serve in same glass. Can be iced if
desired.
A very popular beverage in the Navy.

1930 Harry McElhone: Harry’s ABC of Mixing Cocktails. Seite 43. Gimlet.

1/2 Plymouth Gin, 1/2 Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial.
Stir and serve in same glass. Can be iced if
desired.
A very popular beverage in the Navy.

1933 Harry Craddock: The Savoy Cocktail Book. Seite 75. Gimblet Cocktail.

1/4 Lime Juice. 3/4 Dry Gin.
Shake well and strain into
medium size glass; fill up with
soda water.

1933 Harry Craddock: The Savoy Cocktail Book. Seite 75. Gimlet Cocktail.

1/2 Plymouth Gin.
1/2 Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial.
Stir, and serve in same glass.
Can be iced if desired.

1934 Harry McElhone: Harry’s ABC of Mixing Cocktails. Seite 51. Gimlet.

1/2 Coates’ Plymouth Gin, 1/2 Rose’s Lime Juice
Cordial.
Stir and serve in same glass. Can be iced if
desired.
A very popular beverage in the Navy.

1935 Gustav Selmer Fougner: Along the Wine Trail. Seite 281. Gin and Lime.

Fill a fairly large sherbet type of glass one-third full of shaved
ice or in small pieces, whichever is prefered. Then add two parts of
gin to one part of sweetened lime juice. Stir and serve. I might add
that the proportion of lime juice to gin may be varied to suit the
individual taste.

1937 R. de Fleury: 1800 – And All That. Seite 220. Gimlet.

1/3 Lime Juice Cordial
2/3 Gin
Shake. Serve in me­-
dium size glass and fill
with Soda.

1939 Ambrose Heath: Good Drinks. Seite 52. Gimlet.

1/3 Lime Juice Cordial
2/3 Gin
Shake and fill up with Soda Water.

1944 Crosby Gaige: The Standard Cocktail Guide. Seite 33. Gimlet Cocktail.

1 jigger Gin
1 jigger Lime Juice
1 teaspoon Fine Sugar
Shake with shaved ice. Serve with twist of
Orange Peel.

1944 Oscar Haimo: Cocktail Digest. Seite 55. Gimlet Cocktail.

1 1/3 oz. Orange Juice
1 1/3 oz. Gin
Shake with shaved ice.

1946 Oscar Haimo: Cocktail and Wine Digest. Seite 61. Gimlet Cocktail.

Juice of 1/2 Lemon
1 tsp. Sugar
2 oz. Gin
Shake well with shaved ice.

1946 Trader Vic: Trader Vic’s Book of Food and Drink. Seite 122. Gimlet.

The Gimlet comes from the Orient. I’d say it
originated in the British Legation years ago, with-
out taking the trouble to delve into its actual his-
tory. Anyway, it’s served throughout the Far East,
from India to the China coast, and is deservedly
popular.
1 ounce Rose’s lime juice
1 scant teaspoon sugar
1 1/4 ounces gin
Shake with ice, strain, and pour into chilled
Daiquiri glass.

1947 A. Vermeys: Cocktails. Seite 45. Gimlet.

1 morceau de glace; 1/3 lime Juice Cordial;
2/3 Dry Gin.

1948 Trader Vic: Bartender’s Guide. Seite 131. Gimlet Cocktail 1.

1 1/4 oz. gin 1 oz. Rose’s lime juice
. 1 scant tsp. fine sugar
Shake with ice; strain into chilled Daiquiri glass.

1948 Trader Vic: Bartender’s Guide. Seite 131. Gimlet Cocktail 2.

3/4 oz. Plymouth gin 3/4 oz. Rose’s lime juice
Stir with large ice; strain into chilled cocktail glass.

1949 Harry Schraemli: Das grosse Lehrbuch der Bar. Seite 356. Gimlet.

In ein kleines Weinglas gibt man 2—3 Stückchen Roh­-
eis, den Saft von 1/2 Zitrone und 1 Glas Gin. Gut um­-
rühren und 3 d. Cordial-Medoc darauf spritzen. Mit
Barlöffel servieren.

1949 Harry Schraemli: Das grosse Lehrbuch der Bar. Seite 356. Gimlet-Cocktail.

1/2 Gin, 1/2 Lime Juice Cordial. Schütteln.

1950 Ted Shane: Authentic and Hilarious Bar Guide. Seite 38. Gimlet.

3 oz. Gin 1 oz. Lime Juice
a tsp. Sugar
Shake with cracked ice and strain. Add large ice cube
and fill with seltzer.

1951 Ted Saucier: Ted Saucier’s Bottoms Up. Seite 108. Gimlet.

1 jigger gin
Juice 1/2 lime
Serve in small tumbler over cracked ice. Fill glass
with seltzer.

1951 Ted Saucier: Ted Saucier’s Bottoms Up. Seite 108. Gimlet Bengal.

A British drink devised in India originally, which spread throughout the
Orient as a tropical drink.
Gin
Rose’s sweetened lime juice
1 large ice cube
1 green cherry
1 thin slice fresh lime
Chill a champagne glass thoroughly. Put in the
ice cube and pour gin over it until ice floats.
Over that, pour the lime juice (the unsweetened
will not do) to cover the surface. Add cherry and
slice of lime.

1952 Anonymus: Cocktails. Seite 76. Gimlet.

Dans un verre à cocktail:
1/3 de jus de cédrat,
2/3 de gin,
Remuer et servir. ( Ne doit pas être glacé.)

1953 Anonymus: Esquire’s Handbook for Hosts. Seite 114. Gimlet.

A gimlet is a bore — not so the Gimlet
The connection between the Gimlet (cocktail) and a gimlet (car-
penter’s boring tool) is obscure — and who cares? Anyway, the
Gimlet is a sharp thirst-quencher and a mainstay of the British
Empire in high-temperature lands East of Suez. You can also get
a very decent Gimlet in London. At the Savoy it’s made like so:
3 parts dry gin to 1 part Rose’s lime juice. Shake with ice and
strain into a large 4 oz. cocktail glass. Add a dash of soda water
for zip. A true Gimlet must be made with Rose’s bottled lime juice,
which vanished like nylons during the war but is now seen around
again. Rose’s has a distinct flavor — like lime candy drops. You can
make a pseudo-Gimlet with fresh limes (jigger of gin, juice of 1
lime, 1 tsp. sugar), but it won’t taste like a Calcutta or Singapore
Gimlet.

1953 Anonymus: Manual del bar. Seite 195. Gimlet.

. 25 gramos de Jugo de Lima
En un vaso de medio (Cordial Ross).
whisky con hielo pica- 50 gramos de Dry Gin.
soda.

1953 Anonymus: The U.K.B.G. Guide to Drinks. Seite 63. Gimlet.

2/3 Dry Gin.
1/3 Lime Juice Cordial.
Shake and Strain.
(It is the practice to-day to
add splash of soda water
if required.)

1953 David A. Embury: The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks. Seite 131. Gimlet.

Actually
the Gimlet is a Gin Rickey and is made with sugar, lime juice, gin, and
carbonated water. It is served in a Delmonico or Sour glass. It is also
served as a cocktail, omitting the carbonated water.

1953 „Kappa“: Bartender’s Guide to Mixed Drinks. Seite 50. Gimlet Cocktail.

3 oz. Gin
1 oz. Lime Juice
2 Teaspoons Sugar
Shake with cracked Ice and strain. Add large
Ice cube.

1953 Leo Cotton: Old Mr. Boston Official Bartender’s Guide. Seite 69. Gimlet Cocktail.

Juice 1 Lime
1 Teaspoon Powdered Sugar
1 1/2 oz. Old Mr. Boston Dry Gin
Shake well with cracked Ice and strain
into 4 oz. Cocktail glass and fill bal­-
ance with Carbonated Water.

1953 Marcel et Roger Louc: Cocktails et Grand Crus. Seite 61. Gimlet Cocktail.

1/3 Jus de citron
2/3 Gin
Ajouter une demi-tranche
de citron.

1954 Marcel Pace: Nos Meilleures boissons. Gimlet.

1/2 GIN
1/4 COINTREAU
1/2 lime ou 1/4 citron 1/2 lime or 1/4 lemon
frapper shake well

1954 Robert H. Loeb, Jr.: Nip Ahoy. Seite 21. Gimlet.

Robert H. Loeb, Jr.: Nip Ahoy. Page 21. Gimlet.
Robert H. Loeb, Jr.: Nip Ahoy. Page 21. Gimlet.

1953 Anonymus: The U.K.B.G. Guide to Drinks. Seite 63. Gimlet.

2/3 Dry Gin.
1/3 Lime Juice Cordial.
Shake and Strain.
(It is the practice to-day to
add splash of soda water
if required.)

1955 Jean Lupoiu: Cocktails. Seite 62. Gimlet.

Dans un petit gobelet:
1 morceau de glace, 1/3 Lime Juice Cor-
dial, 2/3 de Seager’s Spécial Dry Gin.
Mélanger légèrement et servir.

1956 Patrick Gavin Duffy: The Official Mixer’s Manual. Seite 46. Gimblet.

3/4 Dry Gin
1/4 Lime Juice
Stir well with ice and strain into
glass. Fill with Soda.

1956 Patrick Gavin Duffy: The Official Mixer’s Manual. Seite 46. Gimlet.

1/2 English Gin
1/2 Rose’s Lime Juice
Stir and serve in same glass. May
be iced if desired.

1957 Lawrence Blochman: Here’s How. Seite 42. Oriental Gimlet.

3 parts dry gin 1 part Rose’s lime juice
Stir the ingredients with lump ice in a bar glass until
chilled, strain into jumbo cocktail glasses until two-
thirds full, finish off with iced water. If fresh limes or
unsweetened lime juice is used, add a teaspoon of sugar
or simple syrup.

1960 Anonymus: Recetas para cocteles. Seite 35. Gimlet.

1/4 onza de jugo de limón
1 1/2 onza de Ginebra Seca
Batido a mano y servido en copa de cocktail
con soda.

1960 Anonymus: The U.K.B.G. Guide to Drinks. Seite 64. Gimlet.

2/3 Dry Gin.
1/3 Lime Juice Cordial.
Shake and Strain.
(It is the practice to-day to
add splash of soda water
if required).

1963 Eddie Clarke: Shaking in the 60’s. Seite 95. Gimlet Cocktail.

1 measure gin
1 measure lime juice cordial
Shake well and strain into a small wine glass.
Place small piece of ice in glass and fill with
soda.

1963 Luigi Veronelli: I cocktails. Seite 147. Gimlet Cocktail.

1 bicchiere e 1/2 di dry gin
1/2 bicchiere di succo di cedro spremuto dalla sola
polpa
ghiaccio a cubetti
Introdurre qualche cubetto di ghiaccio nel mixer. Versare
il gin ed il succo di cedro. Mescolare piuttosto forte con
l’apposito cucchiaio, lasciar riposare uno o due secondi,
riprendere infine a mescolare ma lentamente. Servire subito.

1965 Anonymus: The U.K.B.G. Guide to Drinks. Seite 67. Gimlet.

2/3 Dry Gin.
1/3 Lime Juice Cordial.
(It is the practice today to
add splash of soda water
if required).
MIXING GLASS.

1965 Harry Schraemli: Manuel du bar. Seite 405. Gimlet Cocktail.

Dans un petit verre à vin mettre 2—3 petits dés de glace, le jus d’un
1/2 citron et 1 verre gin. Bien remuer et gicler dessus 3 dashes cor-
dial-Médoc. Servir avec cuillère à bar.

1965 Robert London & Anne London: Cocktails and Snacks. Seite 85. Gimlet.

11/2 ounces dry gin 1 teaspoon fine grain sugar
Juice of 1/2 lime
Dissolve sugar in the lime juice in a 6-ounce glass. Add gin, and ice if
desired. Fill with chilled soda. Stir slightly.

1966 Harry Schraemli: Le roi du bar. Seite 93. Gimlet.

Dans un petit verre à vin mettre 2—3 petits
dés de glace, le jus d’un 1/2 citron et 1
verre gin. Gicler dessus 3 d [dash] cordial-Mé-
doc.

1966 Harry Schraemli: Le roi du bar. Seite 93. Gimlet Cocktail.

Shaker. 1/2 gin, 1/2 lime-juice cordial.

1966 John Doxat: Booth’s Handbook of Cocktails and Mixed Drinks. Seite 52. Gimlet.

1/2 Dry Gin
1/2 Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial
Shake and strain into cocktail-glass.
Mr Raymond Chandler’s edition

1966 Oscar Haimo: Cocktail and Wine Digest. Seite 61. Gimlet Cocktail.

Juice of 1/2 Lime. 1/4 oz. Triple Sec
2 oz. Gin. Shake with Ice & Strain.

1968 Anonymus: The Dieter’s Drink Book. Seite 12. Gimlet.

1 1/2 oz. gin, 80 proof
1 1/2 tbs. lime juice
1 tsp. powdered sugar
Shake ingredients well with cracked ice. Strain
into chilled cocktail glass.

1969 Mario Kardahi & Raul Echenique: El arte de la exquisitez y del buen beber. Seite 352. Gimlet.

Refrescado. Servir en vaso de Old Fashioned.
1 chorro de soda,
25 gramos de Jugo de Lima,
50 ” ” Dry Gin.

1972 Anonymus: Recipes – Wines and Spirits. Seite 14. Gimlet.

To make 1 cocktail
3 ounces gin or vodka
2 ice cubes
2 ounces Rose’s sweetened lime juice
1 slice lime
A 6-ounce wine or cocktail glass,
chilled
Place the gin or vodka in a 6-ounce glass and add the ice cubes. Top
with lime juice and garnish with a slice of lime.
Y o u may, if you wish, substitute fresh lime juice for the bottled juice.
In that case, add Vi teaspoon of sugar to the gin or vodka in the glass
and stir with a bar spoon to dissolve.

1972 Leo Cotton: Old Mr. Boston. Seite 40. Gimlet Cocktail.

Juice 1 Lime
1 Teaspoon Powdered Sugar
1 1/2 oz. Old Mr. Boston Dry Gin
Shake well with cracked ice and
strain into 4 oz. cocktail glass.

1972 Trader Vic: Trader Vic’s Bartender’s Guide. Seite 90. Gimlet – 1.

1 ounce gin
1 ounce Rose’s unsweetened lime juice
1/2 ounce sugar syrup
Shake with ice cubes. Strain into chilled cocktail glass. Float a
thin slice of lime.

1972 Trader Vic: Trader Vic’s Bartender’s Guide. Seite 90. Gimlet – 2.

1 1/2 ounces gin
1/2 ounce Rose’s sweetened lime juice
Shake and strain into chilled pilsener glass or cocktail glass.
Float a thin slice of lime.

1972 Trader Vic: Trader Vic’s Bartender’s Guide. Seite 90. Gimlet – 3.

3/4 ounce Plymouth gin
3/4 ounce Rose’s unsweetened lime juice
Stir with ice cubes. Strain into chilled cocktail glass.

1973 Anonymus: 500 Ways to Mix Drinks. Seite 58. Gimlet.

1 jigger dry gin
1 jigger Rose’s lime juice
1 teaspoon sugar syrup
3 ice cubes
Blend 6 to 8 seconds, strain
and serve in chilled cocktail
glasses.

1973 Oscar Haimo: Cocktail and Wine Digest. Seite 60. Gimlet Cocktail.

Juice of 1/2 Lime. 1/4 oz. Triple Sec
2 oz. Gin. Shake with Ice & Strain.

1976 Anonymus: International Guide to Drinks. Seite 52. Gimlet.

2/3 gin
1/3 lime juice cordial
(It is the practice today to add a
splash of soda water if required)
Mixing glass

1976 Brian F. Rea – Brian’s Booze Guide. Seite 52. Gimlet.

Stir/strain into pre-chilled cocktail glass
1 1⁄2 ounces Gin or Vodka
1 ounce Gimlet lime juice
Squeeze wedge of lime for garnish

The original Gimlet was made with Gin,
but today’s choice appears to be Vodka.

1976 Harry Craddock: The Savoy Cocktail Book. Seite 75. Gimblet Cocktail.

1/4 Lime Juice. 3/4 Dry Gin.
Shake well and strain into
medium size glass; fill up with
soda water.

1976 Harry Craddock: The Savoy Cocktail Book. Seite 75. Gimlet Cocktail.

1/2 Gin.
1/2 Lime Juice
Stir, and serve in same glass.
Can be iced if desired.

1977 Stan Jones: Jones’ Complete Barguide. Seite 188. Gimlet.

Purported to be the creation of the English colonials in the Far East who named the
drink after the carpenter’s tool of the same name which is used to gouge holes. Originally
always made with gin but very commonly made with vodka today without even having to
specify it.

cocktail glass stir/shake/blend (each to his own
1 3/4 oz gin
3/4 oz Rose’s Lime Juice
Or as mentioned above substitute vodka for gin.

1977 Stan Jones: Jones’ Complete Barguide. Seite 289. Gimblet.

Hiball Glass Build
1-1/2 oz gin
1/2 oz Rose’s Lime Juice
Fill with soda, ice

1977 Stan Jones: Jones’ Complete Barguide. Seite 289. Gimlet.

Cocktail Glass Shake
1-3/4 oz gin or vodka
3/4 oz Rose’s Lime Juice
Squeeze of lime or Green cherry

1977 Stan Jones: Jones’ Complete Barguide. Seite 291. Gin Gimlet.

Cocktail Glass Shake
1-3/4 oz gin
3/4 oz Rose’s Lime Juice
Squeeze of lime
Green cherry

Variation
Hiball Glass Build
1-1/2 oz gin
1/2 oz lime (or orange) juice
1/2 tsp sugar
Fill with soda, ice

2009 Gaz Regan: The bartender’s Gin Compendium. Seite 278. Gin Gimlet. 75 ml gin; 20 ml Rose’s lime juice cordial; garnish: lime wedge.

2009 Ted Haigh: Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails. Seite 293. The Gimlet. 7,5 cl gin or vodka; 1,5 cl Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial; 1,5 cl fresh lime juice.

2010 Colin Peter Field: The Ritz Paris. Seite 32 & 68. Gimlet. 7/10 Plymouth Gin; 3/10 lime cordial syrup.

2010 Jason Kosmas & Dushan Zaric: Speakeasy. Seite 72. Gimlet. 2 ounces Plymouth gin; 3/4 ounce Lime Cordial; garnish: 1 lime wheel.

2011 Helmut Adam, Jens Hasenbein, Bastian Heuser: Cocktailian 1. Seite 396. Gimlet. 6 cl Gin; 2 cl Rose’s Lime Cordial. Garnierung: Limettenzeste.

2011 Jim Meehan: Das Geheime Cocktail-Buch. Seite 131. Gimlet. 6 cl Plymouth Gin; 2 cl Limettensirup; 2 cl Limettensaft; Garnierung: Limettenscheibe.

2012 Tom Sandham: World’s Best Cocktails. Seite 79. Gimlet. 60 ml gin; 4 tsp lime cordial; garnish: lime wedge or zest.

2013 Victoria Bar: Die Schule der Trunkenheit. Seite 249. Gimlet. 6 cl Gin; 2 cl Roses Lime; Limettenachtel.

2014 David Kaplan, Nick Fauchald, Alex Day: Death & Co. Seite 143. Gimlet. 2 ounces Perry’s Tot Navy-Strength gin; 1 1/2 ounces Toby’s Lime Cordial; garnish: lime wedge.

2016 André Darlington & Tenaya Darlington: The New Cocktail Hour. Seite 113. Gimlet. 60 ml London Dry gin (Beefeater); 60 ml lime cordial; garnish: thin lime wheels or cucumber spear.

2016 Brian Silva: Mixing in the Right Circles at Balthazar London. Seite 73. Gimlet. 60 ml gin or vodka; 15 ml Rose’s Lime Juice Cordial; 15 ml lime juice; garnish: lime wedge.

2017 Gary Regan: The Joy of Mixology. Seite 212. Gimlet. 2 1/2 ounces gin; 3/4 ounce lime juice cordial, such as Rose’s; garnish: 1 lime wedge.

2017 Jim Meehan: Meehan’s Bartender Manual. Seite 219. Gimlet. 2 oz. Tanqueray No. Ten gin; 0,5 oz. lime cordial; garnish: 1 lime wheel.

2018 Alex Day, Nick Fauchald, David Kaplan: Cocktail Codex. Seite 114. Fresh Gimlet. 2 ounces Plymouth gin; 1 ounce fresh lime juice; 3/4 ounce simple syrup; garnish: lime wedge.

2018 Gary Regan: The Joy of Mixology. Seite 212. Gimlet. 2 1/2 ounces gin; 3/4 ounce Rose’s lime juice cordial; garnish: lime wedge.

explicit capitulum
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About

Hi, I'm Armin and in my spare time I want to promote bar culture as a blogger, freelance journalist and Bildungstrinker (you want to know what the latter is? Then check out "About us"). My focus is on researching the history of mixed drinks. If I have ever left out a source you know of, and you think it should be considered, I look forward to hearing about it from you to learn something new. English is not my first language, but I hope that the translated texts are easy to understand. If there is any incomprehensibility, please let me know so that I can improve it.

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