I’d heard of the Winchester Cocktail before, but was reminded by the Speakeasy Podcast from Heritage Food Network when they had Angus Winchester as a guest. I didn’t know the story behind the Gin Zombie’s name however, and it may not be what you expect.
The Winchester is a perfect name for a Zombie made with a spirit as British as Gin replacing the Rum of the original. The Winchester is of course the name of the famous pub that Simon Pegg and his friends hide out in during the British zombie movie, Shaun of the Dead.
Created by Brian Miller of New York’s Death & Co, it was named for Angus Winchester, the Tanqueray Gin ambassador, and Brian had never heard of Shaun of the Dead. What an incredible coincidence! So, credits done, lets get on to the drink this World Gin Day.
The Winchester Cocktail
While the original Death & Co version used Haymen’s Old Tom, Millers Westbourne Strength and Tanqueray Dry gins, I’ve switched these brands up a little for personal preference. The measures are the same if you want to make the original recipe.
- 1 oz (30ml) Jensen’s Old Tom Gin
- 1 oz (30ml) Rock Rose Navy Strength Gin
- 1 oz (30ml) Eden Mill Original Gin
- ¾ oz (22.5ml) lime juice
- ¾ oz (22.5ml) grapefruit juice
- ¾ oz (22.5ml) Elderflower Liqueur
- ½ oz (15ml) grenadine
- ¼ oz (7.5ml) ginger syrup
- 1 healthy dash Angostura bitters
Like most Tiki style recipes, the drink calls for a large number of ingredients which is why many bars might part batch these. The gins, liqueur, syrups and bitters can safely be combined ahead of time and just the fresh juices added at the point of service.
I’m a huge fan of the Jensen’s Old Tom Gin, as there is no sugar added to sweeten, all the flavour comes purely from the botanical load at the Bermondsey Distillery.
Likewise, Rock Rose’s Navy gin is so smooth as to hide its strength, you’d be hard pressed to tell has an upped ABV from the taste, but it certainly packs a punch.
So, that’s our drink of the day for World Gin Day 2018. Shaun of the Dead is always a great choice when you’re stuck for something to watch too, so why not mix up a Winchester, and we’ll wait for this all to blow over…