Cocktail or mocktail, this drink is a refreshing spin on a summer classic.
An overabundance of cherries one weekend led to me putting them in everything—on pancakes, in salads, even making a cherry-centric salsa. A pitcher of cherry lemonade was whipped up, which led to the possibility of a cherry gin and tonic. The pretty color was too tempting for the children present, so cherry tonic mocktails were on order.
They were just as good as the cocktails. Arguably, they were even better. So add the gin or not, as you see fit—or for gin-haters consider vodka or tequila, if you prefer.
- 12 ripe sweet cherries
- ¼ cup lime juice
- 3/4 cup dry gin (optional)
- 24 ounces tonic water
- Lime slices for garnish (optional)
- Pit the cherries and put them in a cocktail shaker or a large glass. Use a muddler or the back of a large spoon to gently crush them.
- Add the lime juice and gin, if using. Let sit for a few minutes. Cover and shake vigorously for 1 minute—you really want the cherry flavor to blend in with everything.
- Fill 6 glasses with ice and strain the cherry-gin mixture in equal measures over the ice. Add tonic to fill the glasses or to taste and garnish with a lime slice, if you like. You can spoon in the crushed cherries from the shaker or not—your call.