How To Make Sugar Syrup: And The Perfect Gin Cocktail To Match

This sugar syrup recipe is cheap and easy to make at home. Perfect for gin cocktails this Summer. BBQ season is upon us.

Sugar syrup is a staple for every aspiring home cocktail mixologist, all the way to the pros. Sadly, it’s expensive to buy but being it so vital for many delicious cocktails, why not make it at home and subsequently pat yourself on the back for being a total kitchen hero and saving yourself some pennies. It’s cheap and easy to put together and also opens up a realm of creative possibility, ginger sugar syrup I hear you cry?- Lavender? Thyme maybe? Before you know it, you will be taking over the “craft beer guy” in your circle of friends as the one who is prattle on about what they have been “brewing” at home.

We opt for a 2:1 (sugar: water) ratio to make a thicker syrup, that will require less volume in your drink and last longer on the shelf. Sugar syrup is measured by volume, so for every 100g of sugar, you need 50g of water.

You will need:

  • Water
  • Caster or granulated sugar (or experiment with brown or demerara for a different flavour)
  • A saucepan
  • A hob
  • A ladle or funnel, and bottles to pour it into.

White caster sugar is normally used but it’s worth considering using a darker sugar if it’s going to be used with dark spirits such as in an Old Fashioned. Demerara syrup can work wonders with rums.

So here’s how it’s done:

  1. Pour one cup of water into a saucepan
  2. Add one cup of caster sugar into the water and put over a low heat
  3. Gently stir the sugar and water until most of the sugar has dissolved (the liquid will look mostly clear)
  4. Now add the second cup into the saucepan stirring as you pour it in. Keep going until no granules of sugar are left visible.
  5. Heating aids the dissolving of the sugar but careful not to put the temperature too high – do not let the water boil or even simmer.
  6. Optionally, add a small splash of flavourless vodka – this will help preserve the syrup for longer.
  7. Once all the sugar has dissolved, allow the syrup to cool completely (leave a lid on the pan so no flies get in!) then pour into bottles.

The recipe will keep for up to 6 months in the fridge which gives you plenty of time to experiment with some delicious gin cocktails. We couldn’t very well write a sugar syrup recipe without recommending a gin classic to test it with . . . .

To make things even more simple after all, most of us Gin lovers like to get straight to the point, here is a video tutorial:


Gin Fizz Cocktail Recipe

An absolute undisputed classic cocktail and a refreshing gin lovers favourite. When made well with fresh ingredients, a good gin fizz is the perfect after-dinner cocktail or Saturday Summer afternoon tipple.

It’s perfectly paired with a dry gin, particularly if you flavour the syrup but there are endless combinations you could try. Say you have a really delicious herb infused gin, like Thyme for example, this would match beautifully with a lemon or rhubarb syrup, the earthy flavour mixed with the tart flavour of the syrup, would be a match made in heaven.

You will need:

A standard measure of Gin

35 ml lemon juice, freshly squeezed (add more or less to taste)

15ml sugar syrup

soda water

How is it done?:

Combine the ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake together. After a good old shake, strain it into a tall glass filled with fresh ice. Then garnish with a sprig of Thyme or a slice of lemon or two. Sit back and enjoy.

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