Depending on how you look at the glass, the Southside lands somewhere between a gin Mojito sans soda water or a Gimlet with mint. Though New York’s 21 Club lays claim to the recipe as part of its Prohibition-era menu, some cocktail historians place the conception some 40 years earlier at the Southside Sportsmen’s Club in Long Island, a private establishment where tony Manhattanites went to hunt, fish and drink Mint Juleps—the latter of which probably evolved into this iteration. The clubby association stuck, and the drink became standard issue for the pearl and nine-iron set, but one would be remiss in passing this over on principle—it’s as delicious as it is simple.
- 2 ounces gin
- 3/4 ounce lime juice
- 3/4 ounce simple syrup (1:1, sugar:water)
- 6-8 mint leaves
- 1 dash orange bitters
Garnish: mint sprig
- In a cocktail shaker, gently muddle mint leaves with simple syrup.
- Add all other ingredients, add ice and shake until chilled.
- Double strain into a chilled coupe or cocktail glass.
- Spank a mint sprig against your hand to release the oils and garnish.
London-style dry gin plays nice in Southsides, especially this version. If you’ve got it, use it. Oh, and spanking mint is exactly what it sounds like.