Week of Happy: Gin Day

A good friend once told me he hasn’t seen anyone put down gin like me since his grandma.

What can I say? Just call me Nana.

Over the past couple years, with everything from tomato juice to soda water, I’ve found new, fun ways to mix cocktails. In this quest, I’ve used pretty much every liquor, but for me – gin wins.

hendricks-ginToday, I thought I’d gift you with my favorite recipe, and a few others I’ve created/modified along the way:

Zesty Grapefruit Martini

  • 2 oz Hendrick’s gin (who are we kidding, just add as much as you like.)
  • Fresh Basil
  • 1 ripe Grapefruit
  • Agave Nectar
  • Fresh Ginger, grated (that kinda pulpy part)

Muddle fresh basil leaves, 1/2tsp agave nectar, and 1/2tsp ginger in bottom of shaker. Add gin. Over strainer squeeze juice of 1/2 the grapefruit into shaker. Add ice. Shake-a-shake-a-shake-a. Serve up. Alt serving to experience milder flavors: serve over ice with a splash of soda water and a wedge of lime.

up basil gin grapfruit

Other favorites:

Cucumber Gin Spritzer7-gincooler_400x265

  • Gin of choice
  • Cucumber of choice
  • Seltzer/soda water of choice
  • Lime not of your choice

Muddle cucumber and a small amount of lime zest in bottom of shaker, add gin and ice, shake. Pour the entirety into a heavy bottom glass, top with soda water and squeeze of lime. Garnish with more lime.

Cajun Red Snapper

  • Dry Gin
  • Zing Zang Bloody Mary Mix
  • Tomato Juice
  • Crystal’s Hot Sauce
  • Pickle spears
  • Peperoncini/brine
  • Pickled Okra if you can get it
  • Pickled Pearl Onions
  • Pickled Beans
  • Green olives stuffed/brine (Garlic, blue cheese, standard)

Bloody okraYou’re gunna need a big cup. Like at least a pint glass. For parties, I make the mix in a pitcher and people add their own garnishes and booze over ice. For this, I’ll just tell you how to make your own – but remember, with bloodies, it’s all done to your taste. If you’re feeling “from scratch” on the mix here’s my go-to reference for starters.

Back to that glass. Put ice in it. Put lots of gin in it. Don’t be shy. Add a dash (I mean it, just like ‘boop!’) of olive brine and peperoncini brine. Generous shake(s) of Crystal’s (this hot sauce is more flavor than spice, it’s why I use it). Depending on the space you left yourself in that glass, add Zing Zang and tomato juice at a 2:1 ratio to finish it off. Zing Zang is amazing but intense and you don’t want to start your day with heartburn, do ya? Stir.

Make awesome garnish of awesome by either just throwing in the glass or spearing: okra, onions, beans, olives, pickles, peperoncini to taste. If you ever suggest putting celery in this I will hurt you. Acceptable/encouraged addition: grilled shrimp. Breakfast in a cup!


The Art of the Everyday – February 3: Week of Happy – Enjoy this series of simple (and some not so simple) things that make me happy while I’m on vacation!


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