Basically, you only need to add a splash of bubbly soda water to a Sour, and you got yourself a refreshing Fizz. Thus, a classic fizz features a spirit, a citrus component, syrup, and soda water.
And the Gin Fizz is also closely related to the Tom Collins cocktail. However, there are some small but significant differences in preparing the drinks. But first, let's look at the Gin Fizz cocktail in general.
Ingredients of the Gin Fizz
The classic Gin Fizz obviously features Gin as a base spirit. The other ingredients are fresh lemon juice, simple syrup, soda water, and -if you like- egg white.
The best Gin for a Gin Fizz
The Gin Fizz is a fantastic cocktail to experiment with the Gin base. And honestly, there are so many different types of Gin available to try.
Since a Fizz has basically no component that could clash with the flavors in the base alcohol, you have free choice. From traditional Dry and London Dry Gins to more modern New Western Gins, floral or fruity versions - the possibilities are sheer endless.
If you want a recommendation, my current favorite for a Gin Fizz cocktail is Bobby's Gin. It's a Gin with an exotic touch, distilled by an expert Genever producer.
Lemon juice plays a big role in cocktails. And to get the perfect Gin Fizz, it's absolutely crucial to use freshly squeezed juice. No pre-bottled store-bought version can possibly deliver on that zesty, tangy punch from fresh lemons.
You can also consider letting your fresh lemon juice age for a short while. Sounds contradictory? It's not.
Aging lemon juice means squeezing your lemon and letting the fresh juice sit for 4-10 hours. Due to a biochemical reaction, it will lose its bitterness. You want to know more? Read this article about lemon juice in cocktails.
Syrup in a Gin Fizz cocktail
The standard option for a Gin Fizz is regular simple syrup. However, this drink is perfectly suited for flavored syrups, as well. They can add some beautiful subtle fruitiness or a floral aroma that can go perfectly with a floral Gin.
And flavored syrups can also alter the visual appearance of your Gin Fizz. For instance, with homemade hibiscus syrup, you can turn it pink. And if you want more inspiration, head to our section about homemade syrups for cocktails.
There's not a lot that can go wrong with soda water. Just make sure to use a bottle that's not been open for a couple of days already. You want some decent carbonation for a great Gin Fizz.
Egg white in your Gin Fizz?
The egg white adds texture to the drink. Not only the frothy top but the whole cocktail obtains a smooth mouthfeel. However, it is purely optional.
Nowadays, the Gin Fizz often comes without the egg white component. Some people just don't like the idea of raw egg white in a drink. Yet, I prefer my Fizz with the foamy top.
To get the perfect texture, you have to perform a dry shake. That's shaking your drink without ice and then with ice - or the other way around. That helps create foamy air bubbles in the egg white.
If you're reluctant to use egg, perhaps out of health concerns, let me tell you that egg white in a sour cocktail is harmless.
The alcohol kills most bacteria and the lemon juice is also "cooking" the egg white. Similar to preparing ceviche with raw fish and lime.
If you're vegan or don't want to consume eggs for other reasons, there's a perfect alternative called Aquafaba. -You can also read how Aquafaba compares to egg white when used in cocktails.
Difference between Gin Fizz and Tom Collins
The main difference is that a Tom Collins is always served without egg white, whereas the Gin Fizz often has this foamy head created by shaking it with egg white. And the preparation is different, as well.
A Gin Fizz cocktail commonly needs to be shaken. -Especially when you want to achieve that foamy egg white on top. The Tom Collins, on the other hand, is commonly stirred and then strained over ice.
Another distinction is the garnish. A Gin Fizz comes with no garnish or just a lemon twist or wheel, while a classic Tom Collins usually features a cocktail cherry. -Details that, in the end, will make a difference.
History of the Gin Fizz cocktail
The first time ever that a Gin Fizz recipe got printed was in the famous cocktail book of Jerry Thomas - The Bartenders Guide. That was back in 1876, a starting point for the Fizz cocktails.
It took a few years until the cocktail gained traction. But in the early 1900s, the Gin Fizz cocktail became more and more popular.
Traditionally the Gin Fizz was served in a small glass without ice. The egg white in the mix was the primary difference from the Tom Collins cocktail, also published in the same book.
The unusual and refreshing blend also led to many other closely related recipes. I listed some of those related cocktails for you below.
Nowadays, the Gin Fizz gets served on ice in Highball or Tom Collins glass, topped up with soda water, and garnished with lemon peel.
I mentioned the Tom Collins cocktail quite a lot in this post. That is because the recipes for both drinks are so similar. It feels impossible talking about one without the other.
But there's more, of course. Due to the popularity of the Gin Fizz, other famous classics like the Ramos Gin Fizz and the Sloe Gin Fizz evolved.
The Ramos Gin Fizz famously adds heavy cream and orange flower water. And the Sloe Gin Fizz replaces regular Gin with Sloe Gin. A very particular, usually low ABV version of Gin made with Sloe berries.
- 2 oz Gin
- 1 oz Fresh lemon juice
- 0.75 oz Simple syrup
- 1 Egg white
- 1 oz Cold soda water
- Pour Gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, and egg white into your cocktail shaker and shake without ice for 15 seconds (dry shake).2 oz Gin, 1 oz Fresh lemon juice, 0.75 oz Simple syrup, 1 Egg white
- Open the shaker, add ice to the mix, and shake again for a few seconds.
- Strain into a Highball glass over ice and carefully fill up the glass with ice-cold soda water.1 oz Cold soda water