Ginger Rogers4

Ginger Rogers Cocktail

Ginger Rogers

* 8 to 12 mint leaves
* 1/2 ounce ginger syrup
* 1 1/2 ounces gin
* 1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
* Ginger ale
* Lime wedge for garnish

Put the mint in a pilsner or collins glass, cover with the syrup, and muddle lightly until the mint begins to release its aroma. Fill the glass with ice and add the gin and lime juice. Top with ginger ale. Using a bar spoon, stir the drink from the bottom up to mix. Garnish with a lime wedge.

I love mint so I went with the high end of 12 leaves per glass, and also used the ginger simple syrup I made recently. The flavors used here — mint and ginger, gin and ginger ale — combine together perfectly, making this a favorite of the drinks I’ve made recently. It’s light, fresh, and delicious.

I used the last of our Junipero gin for Sarai’s, and Bombay Sapphire for mine, and ended up with two distinctly different cocktails. The Sapphire has a stronger herbal flavor, and Junipero is a better gin for things like martinis, but I didn’t compare these two drinks carefully enough to say which was better. The Bombay version was maybe a bit more complex due to the stronger floral notes but with the ginger and mint it was hard to say. Delicious either way.

This recipe was created at Zefiro here in Portland by Marcovaldo Dionysos, former bar manager at Absinthe in San Francisco, and appears in The Art of the Bar.

Comments 4 Comments So Far

Marcovaldo Dionysos

The Ginger Rogers was created at Zefiro in Portland in 1995 and was popularized at Absinthe, which opened in 1998.

Kenn | basilandco.com

Interesting. The Art of the Bar credits the recipe to you, as the former bar manager at Absinthe, which implies the drink was created there. Reading it again, I see it doesn’t actually state where it was created. I’ll update this post to reflect that. Thanks!

Marcovaldo Dionysos

Thanks! I had just opened Saucebox, and my friend Kathy Flick was working at Zefiro. I brought in a book I’d just found (Drinks, Jacques Straub, 1914), and Kathy & I tried out several recipes. We liked the ‘Favorite Cocktail’, but adjusted the recipe to give it more ginger. Soon after, I moved to San Francisco and was given the opportunity to open Absinthe. The Ginger Rogers was the runaway hit, selling close to 1,000 a month in the first year.

Kenn | basilandco.com

Thanks for the story. It’s always interesting to hear the history behind good cocktails.