Gin by feature Gintresting

Pink Gin: Why its pink, which one is the best and How to make it?

It doesn’t take a gin expert to notice the “pink gin” trend. Whether roaming the local grocery store or spotting advertisements online and in magazines, the notion of pink gin has spread around the world. But what exactly is pink gin? Is it the same as traditional London Dry, only with pink coloring? Or perhaps it’s similar to what spirits like vodka and whiskey have done, where flavors are combined to create reduced alcohol but increased flavor drink? You can find all of your pink gin questions answered right here.

What Is Pink Gin

Despite its recent emergence in popularity, pink gin has been around for some time now. In fact, pink gin first sprung into popularity during the mid 19th century. However, the gin was not made pink by manufacturers and distillers. Instead, it was made at home. Traditional pink gin is made using Plymouth gin with an added dash of Angostura bitters.

Angostura bitters is a creation that combines a number of herbs, spices, and gentian (which is a kind of flower). These bitters have a deeper, red appearance, so when a few dashes of Angostura bitters are added to a glass of gin, it turns the liquid pink.

Now, the exact date and time of pink gin’s origin are up for some debate, but as is the case with most things gin, it’s believed to connect with the British Royal Navy. As you might already know, drinks like gin and tonic hail from the British navy as gin was often safer to drink, helped keep sickness away, and the lime (or other forms of citrus) were good at preventing scurvy.

Of course, there’s only so much you can do with gin while sailing around India or patrolling other waters for months at a time. You need something that will add some flavor to the gin without taking up much space. Angostura bitters is one fine option. It takes up little space, doesn’t require refrigeration (which wasn’t an option at the time), and, unlike limes, the bitters will not spoil as quickly. In fact, Angostura bitters were used to help treat certain forms of seasickness, so these bitters were kept on board anyway.

So, when sailors were starting to feel seasick they would add the bitters to their gin, which gave it the pink appearance. In general, the earliest form of pink gin used Plymouth gin, which is sweeter (at least traditionally) than London Dry gin.

As British sailors moved about the world, they often requested certain drinks be made in these far off regions. This is one of the main reasons why other gin cocktails have sprung up around the world (such as the Singapore Sling). This helped spread the popularity of Pink Gin around the world.

Best Pink Gin: Top 6 Pink Gin Brands

Pinkster Gin

Here is a gin that takes on its pink appearance thanks to the fresh raspberries that are hand-steeped in the gin. This is a dry gin with an excellent finish that is both smooth and just a touch of fruity.

Kopparberg Gin

Here is a gin that sounds like a daiquiri in a bottle. It’s not, of course, as it still has a number of traditional gin botanicals, but it does take on its pink color with the help of both strawberry and a hint of lime. It is a lighter gin, and Kopparberg even sells it in can form, so you already have a pre-mixed cocktail ready to serve.

Terres de Mistral Provence Gin

This pin gin takes its color from the additional pink grapefruit. This helps give the gin a wonderfully subtle citrus note, which mixes with the already present mint and fennel exceptionally well. This is a great gin for when you typically add lemon to your cocktail (such as a gin and tonic or a lemon-rimmed martini).

Limehouse Gin

Limehouse likes to keep its exact recipe under wraps for the added ingredients. This particular gin, which hails out of London, uses, what the company refers to as “fresh red fruits.” It is on the sweeter side, so there’s a good chance there are raspberry and strawberry in it, as well as possibly a dash of red grapefruit to help neutralize a bit of the sweetness with the tartness of the grapefruit.

Malfy Gin Rosa

This gin is referred to as “Rosa”, or “pink” in Italian. It uses Sicilian pink grapefruits which are made locally (and if you ever have the chance, sample a Sicilian pink grapefruit, as you’ll find it is substantially different from the large pink grapefruits found in California or Florida). Rhubarb is also used within this gin to help give it the “rosa” color tone.

Gordon’s Premium Pink

When it comes to inexpensive price points, you really can’t find something for a better price than Gordon’s (while maintaining the quality). This particular pink gin uses the original Gordon gin while introducing strawberries and raspberries, plus some tartness from red currents to give it a vibrant, pink appearance.

How to Make Pink Gin?

So maybe you haven’t found a pink gin that fits your needs. Or perhaps you have a favorite gin you absolutely love but the distiller doesn’t craft pink gin. That’s not a problem at all. It isn’t all that difficult to make pink gin yourself. After all, if some British sailors could make the drink in the middle of the ocean 200 years ago, you shouldn’t have any issue doing the same at home with a full kitchen.

Rhubarb Gin

Rhubarb is one of those ingredients you either love or hate. If you love it, you’ll love this pink rhubarb gin recipe. This particular recipe will take four weeks of infusing, so if you’re planning on using this for a party, make it at least a month in advance:

  • 1 bottle gin
  • 1kg pink rhubarb stalks
  • 400g caster sugar (avoid golden or brown sugar)

Wash the rhubarb and trim the stalks. Cut into smaller pieces then place in a jar with the sugar. Let sit overnight. Now, pour in the gin, shake and let it sit for four weeks.

Rose Infused Gin

This recipe will give your gin a significantly different taste than all the other fruit options on this list. If you enjoy a floral gin cocktail, this is a great way to go. You’ll need some time with this method as well. In many ways, it’s like seeping tea the old fashion way (leaving it out in the sun). To make this recipe you’ll need:

  • 1 cup dry rosebuds
  • 1 bottle (750ml) of gin

Pour the gin and the rosebuds into a jar, then let it sit for at least five days. Every day, rotate the jar a few times to mix the roses up. After 5 days you’re good to go.

Strawberry Gin

This recipe will take three weeks of infusing. But it’s well worth the wait. To make it you’ll need:

  • 400g sliced strawberries
  • 1 bottle of gin
  • 100g caster sugar

Ideally, you’ll use fresh strawberries for this. If you can’t find any, pick up unsweetened frozen strawberries and let them thaw. Then add the strawberries and sugar into a large jaw, then add the gin and let it sit for at least two weeks (three is better).

Raspberry Gin

Like the strawberry gin, you’ll need two to three weeks of steeping time. You’ll also want to go with fresh raspberries, when possible. To make the recipe you’ll need:

  • 1 bottle of gin
  • 150g sugar
  • 350g raspberries

Mix the raspberries and sugar. Add in the gin and let it sit for two to three weeks. Turn the jar once a day to keep the sugar mixed.

Pomegranate Gin

If you want you can use just gin, pomegranates and caster sugar. But there is a very interesting spiced alternative you can make as well (recipe to follow).

To make the regular pomegranate gin:

  • Juice from 3 pomegranates
  • 350g caster sugar
  • 1 bottle of gin

Mix juice and sugar in a jar, then add in gin and let sit for two weeks.

To make the spiced version, add:

  • juice of 1 clementine
  • 200ml pomegranate juice
  • 12 peppercorns
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 star anise
  • Use liter of gin

This is a great mixed gin for the winter holidays.

Cherry Infused Gin

To make the cherry-infused gin you’ll need:

  • Cup of cut-up cherries
  • Bottle of gin

Combine in a jar and let sit for two weeks. If you used tart, sugar-free cherries you may want to add in 100g of sugar.

Grapefruit Gin

For this recipe, you’ll ideally want to purchase pink grapefruit. To make it you’ll need:

  • 2 medium pink grapefruits
  • 1 bottle gin

Juice the grapefruits and add into a jar. Also, zest the grapefruit and add this as well. Pour in the gin and let sit for a month, then strain out the grapefruit contents.

Enjoy Your Pink Gin

Once you have created the pink gin you can now use it in your favorite cocktail. Try it with a gin and tonic first to get a better sense of what the bitters do to the taste of your gin. With so many pink gins out there you owe it to yourself to taste the different offerings and discover for yourself which you like the best. Just like regular gins, every brand is unique and offers something the other brands don’t. So if you’re ready, now is the perfect time to dive deeper into the world of pink gin.

Order online from a retailer near you:

Pink Gin Brands

Showing 1 - 16 of 16
Business Info
Date Established
Bitter Truth
The Bitter Truth Pink Gin is a delicious blend of traditionally crafted gin and aromatic bitters. It is designed to please modern tastes with a soft and gentle mouth feel and fine complex f […]
Distilled as tradition would dictate, in copper stilled fueled by traditional wood burners, it is produced from a base of juniper berries fresh from the Maritime Alps.
The Bosford Rose Gin is the kind of floral take on a classic gin that you'd expect when seeing the pink tone of the spirit. It is made as a classic London Dry Gin, and then distilled down w […]
Buss 509
Buss No. 509 is a pink grapefruit gin. It has a wonderful color and is flavored with a number of botanicals, including red Californian grapefruit, juniper, orange, lemon, iris, vanilla, and […]
When you come across Cubical Kiss Gin it will look more like an oversized bottle of perfume than of gin. But that's exactly what the Spanish distiller wants. It uses botanicals such as juni […]
Eden Mill
The famous pink gin from Eden Mill. More and more people have fallen in love with it for its floral and warm berry notes and its association with Valentine's day. This unique gin is now a f […]
This contemporary pink gin is made with 15 different botanicals including pomegranate, and although it makes an eye-catching cocktail it truly shines in a gin & tonic.
Pink 47
Pink 47 Gin is a London Dry gin that takes most of its taste from Italian juniper berries. It also brings together a number of other botanicals from around the world, including Spanish citr […]
The original Pinkster gin, hand-steeped in fresh raspberries, delivered straight to your door in just 48 hours. Deliciously dry with a hint of fruit and an exceptionally smooth finish. If y […]
This smooth and gentle drink is a move away from the traditional dry gin. The combination of rose and heather gives very light floral notes and a Prosecco character. The colour reflects the […]
Flavored gin has dramatically risen in popularity over the last several years. While many brands have released flavored options (the majority of which featuring a vibrant, pink color), most […]
Fresh red fruits combine with a hint of juniper to create a light, sweet gin, perfect for a summer's evening.
Original recipe. A coming together of seven aromatic botanicals to create pure elegance.
Enjoy an award-winning spirit without breaking the bank Gin may well be the most in-demand drink of the decade.
A unique gin handcrafted in Provence, France. An aromatic blend of Thyme & Rosemary and burst of citrusy pink grapefruit peel - The taste of Provence in a gin!!
Named for the year that new zealanders stood up for their rights and voted down prohibition, this Original Gin (41% abv) is locally produced in our custom made still. Created using otago ch […]

Related posts

Sloe Gin: What is Sloe Gin & Perfect Sloe Gin Recipe

Ittai Aminoff

Getting To the Root Of Chicago’s KOVAL Gin

Yaron Livny

Gin Botanicals: The Spices That Create The Flavor Profile

Ittai Aminoff