Back to Basics: How to use Honey in Cocktails

Craft Gin Club is on a mission to help gin-lovers everywhere take their homemade drinking experience to the next level! With this in mind, we publish regular features with plenty of tips on basic cocktail-making techniques for beginners, as well as a little bit of inspiration for the more experienced mixologist.


BACK TO BASICS: HOW TO USE HONEY IN COCKTAILS

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When would you use honey in a cocktail?

Like simple syrup, honey is used to sweeten cocktails – but, unlike simple syrup, it also adds a deliciously unctuous floral flavour to your finished drink.

How is it different to using a syrup?

Simply put, the texture. Honey is so thick that it’s difficult to blend with a shake alone. Fortunately, a simple change in your technique will make this a problem of the past, and also unlock the joy of other thick syrups like agave and molasses.

What shouldn’t you do?

Never, ever just whack honey into your cocktail shaker along with the rest of your ingredients; it’s thick to begin with, but the ice in your shaker will make it thicker – which means it’s unlikely to incorporate with the rest of your ingredients. You’ll be left with a blob of useless honey at the bottom of your shaker, and not a trace in your strained cocktail!

So, what should you do?

There are two ways to go about it. If you’re making a single serve, add all your other ingredients and then add the honey using a bar spoon. Taking your time, stir in the honey slowly until it’s all dissolved off the spoon and into the cocktail. Shake and strain as normal.

Alternatively, if you’re going back for seconds, save time by making a honey syrup. Just add equal parts honey and boiling water in a mug and stir until the honey has slackened and combined with the water. Leave to cool or cover and keep in the fridge for up to two weeks.