Gin Sling

When you sip on a refreshing Gin Sling, you’re drinking up a little bit of history.

Gin Sling

If you’ve never had one before, odds are you’ve heard of a cocktail called the Gin Sling. Through the years I’d see the name in books, have heard it mentioned on television shows and movies, and even witnessed a random person order one at a bar. One day curiosity got the better of me, and I had to see if this cocktail was just as much fun to drink as it was to namecheck. Just say “Gin Sling” out loud a few times and watch your day get a little better.

An easy to make concoction, and one of the earliest tipples in existence, the Sling is a mixture of a base spirit, water and sugar. The Gin Sling itself is said to have originated as early as 1800, and was an American invention, similar to the Gin Toddy. In 1862, bartender Jerry Thomas differentiated the two drinks by stating that the Toddy used nutmeg. Before “cocktails” became a thing and began popping up in bars worldwide, “Slings” and “Toddies” were the mixed drinks of choice. They definitely did something right, as they are still enjoyed by many cocktail enthusiasts to this day, and not just for the historical significance.

As the years go on, even the most traditional of institutions and recipes will change. That’s just the nature of time. The Gin Sling is no different, and the recipe we’ll be making today isn’t how one of these would have been made in the 19th century. I think it’s better. I mean, I’ve never had the opportunity to travel back to the 1800s and enjoy a drink there, especially since Mr. Peabody ran afoul of my last endeavor in time travel (read about it here ). But our modern take on this historic drink will be just as exciting.

What is the Best Gin to Use in a Gin Sling?

Speaking of history, let’s go old school with our Gin Sling today. I’ll usually decree that London Dry Gin is always a solid way to go as a base spirit, and one will certainly do a beautiful job in this cocktail, but we’re going to have some fun today. Try an Old Tom Gin or even genever, a liquor that originated from Holland in the 16th century, and was a sort-of precursor to gin. These will give your drink a more classical take, and will give you a sense of what these might have tasted like many years prior.

Gin Sling
Servings 1 serving
serving 3 minutes


  • 1 1/2 ounces gin
  • 1 ounce sweet vermouth
  • 3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • 1 ounce simple syrup
  • Dash Angostura Bitters
  • 3 to 4 ounces soda water
  • Garnish: lemon spiral


  • Gather the ingredients.
  • In a cocktail shaker, combine the gin, sweet vermouth, simple syrup, lemon juice, and bitters. Fill the shaker with ice.
  • Shake the mixture vigorously until well-chilled.
  • Strain the cocktail into a Collins glass filled with fresh ice.
  • Top the drink with soda water, and garnish with a lemon spiral. Serve immediately and savor the refreshing flavors.
Gin Sling

FAQs & Tips

Gin Sling

Similar Cocktails to the Gin Sling

If the Gin Sling piqued your curiosity for more “classic” cocktails, Twist & Toast has a number of legendary recipes to keep you and your friends entertained. Check some of them out below and try something iconic this evening:

  • Singapore Sling – Complex and refreshing, this strong tipple is another must-have Sling to keep in your drink arsenal.
  • Rum & Coke – A perfect combination that has stood strong over the years as a pillar in the cocktail world.
  • Pink Gin – This simple and elegant cocktail was one of author Ian Fleming’s favorites.
  • Gin Rickey – Tart and refreshing, the Gin Rickey will get you dancing the Charleston at your next party.

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