When is pink really pink?

In recent times the market has been flooded with Pink Gin products. Some of these are technically gin liqueurs (anything with an %Vol alcohol less than 37.5% - or 40% in the USA - is not gin). Rumours abound in the trade that Britain's biggest gin brand sold more of its pink variant than its normal one in 2019. 

Given 2020 is my 35th year working with booze (writes Danny), I'm quite familiar with meteoric rises (remember the alcoholic lemonade craze anyone?). And with alcohol, these rapid trends normally involve a lot of sugar, and one or two dominant fruit characters. 

Let's back-pedal a bit. Once upon a time, a Pink Gin was also known as Gin & Bitters, or Gin Pahit (pahit being the Malay term for bittering something). A simple, but highly effective, short mixed drink of Angostura Bitters and gin. Made well, its a gorgeous alternative to a martini, that (in)famous Breakfast of Champions.

But can we make this into an excellent long drink too, more in the style of a G&T?

Here's our preferred result. One where you taste the gin, seasoned with bitters, and can serve to your G&T-loving friends, and its not over-sweet (in fact, the only sugar here comes from the tonic, which has itself been toned down by using part soda, which also calms the quinine down a bit).

50ml Pollination Gin
100ml Plain good quality Tonic Water
50ml Soda Water
dash of Angostura Bitters

Gently shake a couple of light dashes of Angostura into the bottom of a gin glass (less is more with bitters, you don't want it to dominate), and then add plenty of ice. Build the gin, tonic and soda over the ice, and give it a little stir. Add a garnish of your choice (we've used lime peel and a couple of raspberries in this case).

If you'd prefer to try the short version of Pink Gin, head over to here, where it is the second one down in our selection of short drinks recipes. When mixing short, it requires a little dilution by stirring through ice.

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