Gin & Jam

I’d been coming across a lot of gin-and-jam recipes this past year and thought it was time to try one. My timing, however, wasn’t ideal since my raspberry freezer-jam stash was long, l-o-n-g, gone. My best option? Good, ol’ E.D. Smith. Ed, as he’s affectionately known to me, makes an apricot passionfruit jam that’s tart and a perfect substitute for “real” jam that tastes like summer (not sucrose). As for the gin, we cracked open a bottle from a local distillery, Strathcona Spirits, which harvests some of its juniper berries right from our river valley. Here’s what we mixed up.
2 oz gin (we used Strathcona Spirits)
1/2 oz freshly squeezed lime juice
2 heaping tbsp of your favourite tart jam (we used E.D. Smith Apricot & Passionfruit)
A splash of lemon-lime soda, to top (optional)
A slice of lime and a fruit skewer, to garnish

Add the gin, jam, and lime juice to a shaker filled with ice, secure the lid, and shake until chilled. Strain into an ice-filled tumbler, top with a splash of lemon soda, and garnish with a slice of lime and a piece of fruit that speaks back to the jam you used (we chose pineapple).

The verdict: Let’s just say our hopes weren’t high for this one. None of us are huge gin fans, I’m a jam snob, and the entire cocktail took about as much effort as nuking a hot dog in the microwave. But it was pretty damn good. Strathcona Spirits makes a great gin, and my buddy Ed didn’t let us down. That said, stick with a tart jam. A bossy amount of sugar would have tipped this into the no-zone. Will definitely revisit this when it’s raspberry season.

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