by Lisa

A few months ago, I had a gin fizz at the Moss Room in San Francisco and fell in love.  You might remember my first unsuccessful search for orange flower water .  I did find it, however, at Whole Foods, and a few weekends ago I whipped (or shook) a couple up for the husband and me.  They were done in the late afternoon on a Saturday, and we promptly banished the kids to their bedrooms for a lovely 25 minutes, and Kory and I sat in the living room and had a quiet cocktail.

The drink is outstanding. It’s a little fizzy from the splash of seltzer, creamy but not rich, and slightly sweet.  It’s my new favorite, and I urge you to try it.

Recipes online abound.  I used this one, originally posted here, and it was perfect.

  • 1-1/2 ounces gin (Old Tom gin if you can get it)
  • 1/2 ounce lemon juice
  • 1/2 ounce lime juice
  • 1 ounce simple syrup
  • 3-4 drops orange flower water
  • 2 drops vanilla extract (very optional; there’s some controversy over whether this was ever really used, but it does add a nice touch)
  • 2 ounces cream
  • 1 egg white
  • Soda water

Shake all ingredients except the soda water WITHOUT ICE very vigorously for at least one minute, preferably longer — the longer the better. Then add ice and shake for 1-2 minutes, as long as you can manage, until extremely cold and frothy. Strain into a tall thin glass, or a very large old fashioned glass, and top with soda water. Stir gently.

When we finally let the kids out, we were refreshed and relaxed (an argument for making an small oasis of time for the adults in the house, even in the middle of the day), and Kory mixed up a version for them, which involved bubbly water, a few drops of orange flower water, a dash of (maybe raspberry?) syrup, and a small scoop of  vanilla ice cream.  Certainly, a better, more authentic kids version would involve lemon and lime syrup, but we didn’t have any in the house. We’re happy to improvise when necessary, and the kids, of course didn’t care.  This was probably their favorite one yet.