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16 Classic Gin Cocktails to Try

Classic gin cocktails are a delightful array of timeless libations that showcase the versatility and charm of gin as a base spirit. These cocktails have been cherished for generations, each with its own unique blend of flavors and history. If you’re someone who appreciates the crisp, botanical notes of gin paired with a harmonious mix of ingredients, then classic gin cocktails are right up your alley. Get ready to shake, stir, and savor the timeless elegance of these beloved libations.

Gimlet

Alcoholic Lime and Gin Gimlet with a Garnish

The gimlet is an amazing drink that epitomizes the ideal harmony between simplicity and refinement in the world of traditional gin cocktails. With its roots tracing back to the early 20th century, this timeless concoction continues to captivate discerning palates to this day. The Gimlet, renowned for its refreshing tang and botanical allure, is crafted using three essential ingredients: simple syrup, lime juice, and gin. Served chilled in a classic cocktail glass, the Gimlet exudes an air of timeless elegance.


Classic Gin Martini

dry martini cocktail with bottles of ingredients at the background

When it comes to the pinnacle of classic gin cocktails, the Classic Gin Martini reigns supreme, a timeless masterpiece that epitomizes elegance, refinement, and the art of mixology. Dry vermouth, the faithful companion of gin in a Martini, adds a subtle complexity and a touch of herbal allure, elevating the overall experience. Its delicate interplay with the gin creates a symmetrical balance where no ingredient dominates but rather harmonizes in perfect unison. It is the combination of these elements, the precise proportions, and the artful execution that make the Classic Gin Martini the epitome of a classic gin cocktail.


Aviation

Aviation Cocktail With Gin

Among the best classic gin cocktails, the Aviation stands out as a true gem, shrouded in mystery and steeped in history. Gin, Maraschino liqueur, crème de violette, and fresh lemon juice come together in this expertly crafted cocktail known as the Aviation. This enchanting libation, born in the early 20th century, embodies the perfect balance of botanical flavors and delicate floral notes, making it a standout choice for gin enthusiasts seeking a sophisticated and unique experience.


Singapore Sling

Singapore Sling Cocktail

The Singapore Sling, a drink that captures the distinct flavors and classic elegance of the city that bears its name, will enthrall you when you enter the world of traditional gin cocktails. Gin, the cocktail’s heart and soul, provides the crisp and herbal foundation that fosters a sensory experience, while the Grand Marnier, Bénédictine, and cherry liqueur intermingle, imparting layers of sweetness, warmth, and complexity that dance upon the palate. As the final touch, a splash of club soda adds effervescence, creating a refreshing sparkle that lifts the entire composition. This legendary cocktail has secured its place among the best classic gin cocktails due to its complex blend of ingredients and the unforgettable drinking experience it offers.


Hanky Panky

Boozy Classic Hanky Panky Cocktail with Gin and an Orange Garnish

Delve into the realm of classic gin cocktails and uncover the enigmatic allure of the Hanky Panky. Sweet vermouth, gin, and Fernet-Branca are the three components that make up the precisely crafted Hanky Panky. The Hanky Panky’s reputation as one of the best classic gin cocktails is rooted in its ability to surprise and delight. Its unique blend of flavors invites adventurous palates to embark on a journey of taste, where every sip unravels a new layer of intrigue.


Corpse Reviver #2

corpse reviver no. 2 cocktail with bottles of ingredients in the background

The Corpse Reviver #2, a mesmerizing concoction of gin, Lillet Blanc, Cointreau, lemon juice, and a hint of absinthe, awakens the palate with its harmonious blend of flavors. The botanicals in the gin give it a fresh, green flavor that sets the stage for the rest of the flavors, while the Lillet Blanc, a sweet and fragrant fortified wine, adds depth and richness to the drink and gives it a gentle sweetness that stays on the tongue. Cointreau, a quality orange liqueur, adds an uplifting, zesty flavor that makes the drink shine. Indulge in this classic libation and let the Corpse Reviver #2 awaken your senses with its exquisite balance of flavors.


Last Word 

Last Word Cocktail

The Last Word is a drink that strikes a nice balance between sweetness, herbal undertones, and a tangy citrus kick. The botanical diversity of the gin really shines as you take that initial taste. Its clean, juniper-forward flavor serves as the cocktail’s foundation while also lending a subtle, herbal quality to every sip. The addition of just a little lime juice brings out the other flavors and really wakes up your taste buds. Enjoy this traditional drink and let the Last Word whisk you away on a delicious and memorable voyage of tastes.


Bramble

bramble cocktail with blackberries and gin

The Bramble drink has a flavor that is a perfect harmony of tangy citrus, sugary sweetness, and succulent fruit. The gin, with its botanical essence, adds a crisp and herbaceous note that cuts through the other flavors, lending a refreshing and invigorating character to the drink. The acidity and brightness of the lemon juice perk up the flavor profile and awaken the tongue, while the simple syrup adds a little sweetness to the drink, which works nicely with the lemon juice’s natural sourness. With its vibrant and well-rounded flavor, the Bramble is a cocktail that refreshes and delights the senses.


Negroni

orange negroni cocktail on countertop

Indulge in the classic allure of a Negroni, a cocktail that captivates the palate with its balanced blend of flavors. This classic cocktail has a bittersweet, rich, and delicious flavor because of the combination of gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth. Immerse yourself in this timeless libation and let the Negroni’s sophisticated taste transport you to the heart of cocktail craftsmanship.


French 75

french 75 cocktail on a bar

A French 75 is an enthusiastic and delightful beverage that will take your senses to new heights. This sparkling libation, composed of champagne, gin, lemon juice, and a touch of simple syrup, offers a taste experience that is both invigorating and balanced. With its sparkling nature and harmonious taste, this cocktail delights the senses and leaves a lasting impression.


Vesper

vesper cocktail with bottles of ingredients in the background

Indulge in the iconic allure of the Vesper cocktail, a libation that tantalizes the taste buds with its sophisticated blend of gin, vodka, and Lillet Blanc. The vodka brings a clean and smooth foundation to the cocktail, allowing the other ingredients to shine. Its neutrality allows the botanical nuances of the gin and the delicate sweetness of the Lillet Blanc to take center stage. When you take a sip of a vesper, you will have an experience that will make you feel refined and sophisticated.


Clover Club

summer clover club in window

The Clover Club cocktail offers a taste experience that is simultaneously tart, subtly sweet, and delightfully creamy. Gin gives the drink a reviving and fragrant undertone with its herbal richness and sharp taste. Its presence improves the overall flavor and gives the beverage a unique flavor that makes it stand out. The addition of egg white gives the Clover Club a luxurious and velvety texture, creating a smooth and silky mouthfeel. As you appreciate the elegant aromas of this drink, be ready to be whisked back in time.


Gin and Tonic

gin and tonic drink

Embark on a journey of crisp refreshment with the timeless classic, the Gin and Tonic. The combination of gin and tonic water offers a clean and revitalizing taste that is perfect for any occasion. The crispness of the drink, combined with the slight bitterness and effervescence, invigorates the senses and provides a cooling sensation.


Bee’s Knees

Bee's Knees Cocktail Recipe

Discover the delightful sophistication of the Bee’s Knees, one of the best classic gin cocktails that effortlessly combines gin, honey syrup, and lemon juice. A rich and well-balanced flavor is produced by the gin’s botanical composition interacting with honey syrup. The lemon juice adds a burst of flavorful citrus flavor, providing a tart counterpoint to the sweetness and balancing the drink. Whether enjoyed at a stylish gathering or as a personal indulgence, the Bee’s Knees is a classic gin cocktail that will leave a lasting impression of timeless elegance.


Tom Collins

Tom Collins Cocktail

Step into the world of classic gin cocktails with the timeless Tom Collins. This refreshing libation, crafted with gin, lemon juice, and a splash of club soda, is hailed as one of the best classic gin cocktails for its simplicity and invigorating taste. Whether enjoyed on a sunny afternoon or as a go-to choice at the bar, this cocktail is a timeless favorite that will leave you feeling refreshed and uplifted.


Salty Dog

salty dog drink and recipe

Discover the zesty appeal of the Salty Dog, one of the greatest traditional gin drinks that mixes the gin’s sharpness with the energizing tastes of grapefruit juice. With each sip, the botanical notes of the gin mingle with the vibrant flavors of grapefruit, creating a harmonious marriage of tastes that dance on the palate. Indulge in the salty dog and allow the exhilarating tastes to carry you away to a world of sophisticated and delicious refreshment.


A classic gin martini cocktail in a martini glass, elegantly garnished with a twist of lemon peel and an olive on a toothpick. The martini glass is set on a polished bar counter, surrounded by a luxurious and dimly lit bar environment that suggests an upscale, vintage speakeasy. The background features soft, warm lighting, enhancing the crystal clear appearance of the gin and the artistic presentation of the garnish. The scene captures the essence of a classic cocktail experience.

16 Classic Gin Cocktail Recipes

Yield: 1
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

Instructions

  1. Pick your favorite recipe
  2. Gather all the needed ingredients
  3. Prep a classic gin cocktail in less than 5 minutes

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16 Classic Gin Cocktails to Try
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Paul Kushner

Written by Paul Kushner

Founder and CEO of MyBartender. Graduated from Penn State University. He always had a deep interest in the restaurant and bar industry. His restaurant experience began in 1997 at the age of 14 as a bus boy. By the time he turned 17 he was serving tables, and by 19 he was bartending/bar managing 6-7 nights a week.

In 2012, after a decade and a half of learning all facets of the industry, Paul opened his first restaurant/bar. In 2015, a second location followed, the latter being featured on The Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

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A Christmas-themed Bourbon cocktail. The setting is a cozy winter evening with snow visible through a window in the background. The cocktail is in a classic glass, garnished with a cinnamon stick, a slice of orange, and a sprig of holly for a festive touch. The drink is amber-colored, and there's a warm glow from a nearby fireplace reflecting off the glass. The table is adorned with a red and green tablecloth, and in the background, softly blurred, are twinkling Christmas lights.

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A Classic Vodka Cocktail, served in a sleek, modern cocktail glass. The cocktail has a clear, pure appearance, characteristic of the high-quality vodka base. It's garnished with a twist of lemon or an olive, adding a sophisticated and refined touch. The glass is set on a polished bar counter, under the glow of chic, contemporary lighting that highlights the cocktail's crisp and elegant appearance. In the background, there's a display of vodka bottles and upscale bar accessories, creating a scene of modern cocktail artistry. The image captures the essence of a timeless and stylish cocktail experience, emphasizing the clean and smooth nature of the Classic Vodka Cocktail.

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