Sours are the most traditional of cocktails. The mix of spirit (whisky, brandy or gin), lemon juice and simple (sugar) syrup pre-dates prohibition and is still popular today.
Sours are a shaken cocktail and egg white is sometimes an ingredient. This has, in the past, put me off, because 1. egg whites look like phlegm, and 2. bleurgh.
However, a person is allowed to change their mind. Especially about egg whites in cocktails. So why are they used? The delicate, fluffy texture egg whites take on when shaken, makes the mouth-feel of the whole cocktail much, much smoother. Think light, runny meringue.
I have Sébastien to thank for showing me The Elderflower Gin Sour. In this version of a sour, the simple syrup is replaced with St. Germain Liqueur, (I ADORE St. Germain!), which adds a subtle floral sweetness that balances perfectly against the gin and lemon juice.
A bottle of St. Germain is a good home bar investment as it pairs so well with gin (and champagne). You can see another recipe here. By the way, if you want to make a longer drink, add soda water for an Elderflower Gin Fizz!
Ingredients for an Elderflower Gin Sour
45ml Hendrick’s Gin
20ml St. Germain Liqueur
15ml freshly squeezed Lemon Juice
1 egg white
Place all the ingredients into a cocktail shaker, add ice then shake vigorously.
Strain into a chilled glass.