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1872 Gin Sour, With The People’s Friend

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Some of the tastiest cocktails (think the Martini, the Manhattan, the Margarita) are also the simplest.

At a time when we’re used to see cocktails with seven or eight ingredients on the menu, it can be refreshing to look back to the simpler drinks of a bygone era.

It can’t be argued that a most agreeable summer drink is that called “sour”. It may be made with brandy, whisky, Jamaican rum or the best of all, gin.

Sours belong to one of the old families of original cocktails and are described by Jerry Thomas in his 1862 book How to Mix Drinks.

Here’s how you can make a Gin Sour:


  • 25 ml gin of your choice
  • 1 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 lime wedge
  • Ice
  • Raspberry syrup


  1. Pour your preferred gin in a wine glass
  2. Pour it into a large tumbler with a spoonful of powdered sugar, half a lemon, and one green lime cute in quarters
  3. Fill up the glass with pounded ice and a filet of raspberry syrup
  4. Stir the mixture with a spoon for about a minute
  5. Strain into a wine-glass, drink and you will experience a “sensation”.

We are delighted here at The Gin Kin to be working with The People’s Friend magazine to bring you this recipe and competition in celebration of their 150th anniversary.

If you’d like to win afternoon tea for two and two G&Ts at Hotel du Vin St Andrews head over to our competition page to enter (T&Cs apply, prize must be used by 31 July 2019).

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