I love reinventing classics to fit the season. While the East Side Cocktail is such a perfect and refreshing Summer cocktail as is — I couldn’t help but wonder how much better it might be if I took all the ingredients and threw them in a blender. With the temperature being in the high 80s all week and not letting up for the foreseeable future, can you really blame me?
If you’re not familiar with the East Side Cocktail, it is basically a Southside Cocktail (gin, lime, sugar, mint) with added cucumbers. But they’re both really just gimlets, right? And a gimlet is just a daiquiri with gin instead of rum. I could go on and on but the point is they’re all delicious, simple, and easily quaffable. Now in all of its frosty glory, I introduce you to the Frozen East Side Cocktail. Your new favorite Summer drink.
Frozen East Side Cocktail, serves 1
2 oz. Gin
1 oz. simple syrup
3/4 oz. lime juice
handful of mint
5 cucumber slices
6-8 oz. of ice
Add all your ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into your desired serving vessel, I used coupe glasses, but double rocks glasses will do too. Garnish with cucumber slices and a sprig of mint.
That was super easy, right?
And it tastes like heaven?
Then I think you made it correctly.
When I develop frozen cocktails or reinvent classics as such, here is my rule of thumb; sugar content should always be greater. If I were shaking this drink and serving it up the sugar: citrus ratio would have been flipped (1 oz. lime, 3/4 oz. simple). With frozen drinks, sugar content should be higher to compensate for dilution which is always much greater in frozen drinks. Sometimes adding too little sugar means getting cocktails that turn out unbalanced and overly tart. Capeesh?
Now let’s talk about the blending of the mint and cucumber into this drink. If you’ve ever had an East Side Cocktail in its regular form, muddled and served up like a gimlet, then you know how deliciously refreshing it is. Blending it knocks these refreshing flavors right out of the park though. It’s like an explosion of minty, herbal, refreshing goodness. Honestly, after I shot these I kinda got a little cold sipping them in my kitchen. Talk about cooling down! Did I mention that gorgeous green hue? It’s a stunner ladies and gentlemen! 😉
The other great thing about the Frozen East Side Cocktail, or the East Side in general, is that if you’re not feeling like gin… that’s okay! This cocktail served shaken or made frozen, is outstanding with so many other spirits. Personally, I love it with tequila but it would also work great with vodka, rum, or your favorite whiskey. So pick your spirit of choice and get out that blender! I know this Frozen East Side Cocktail will not disappoint.