White Lady

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Cocktail History

The White Lady is a classic cocktail that was created by Harry MacElhone in 1919 while he was working at Ciro’s Bar in London, England. His original recipe called for crème de menthe instead of gin before he swapped them out about a decade later after he’d opened his own establishment, Harry’s New York Bar in Paris, France. The altered cocktail now made with gin, citrus, and egg white eventually became a favorite of Errol Flynn, Laurel & Hardy, and other Hollywood stars, and it also earned a mention in several novels.

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Gin: This is a spirit made with juniper berries, botanicals, and alcohol. We used Maison Ferrand Citadelle Gin because it has simple and crisp juniper flavor with notes of violet root, angelica, lemon peel, and baking spices. For a mocktail version of this drink, try MONDAY Zero Alcohol Gin in place of the gin.

Triple Sec: This is a liqueur made with bitter oranges, lemons, sugar, and alcohol. We used Cointreau because it’s one of the highest quality orange liqueurs on the market. For a mocktail version of this drink, try Lyre’s Orange Sec Non-Alcoholic Spirit in place of the orange liqueur.

Lemon Juice: This is the liquid juice of a lemon. We used freshly squeezed lemon juice.

Egg White: This is the clear liquid in an egg. We used fresh egg whites because they add a rich, silky smooth texture.

Bartending Tools

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following bar tools:

Jigger: This is used to measure and pour ingredients. We used the Japanese jigger from the A Bar Above 14-Piece Silver Bar Set.

Boston Shaker: This is used to shake ingredients. We used the Boston shaker from the A Bar Above 14-Piece Silver Bar Set.

Hawthorne Strainer: This is used to strain out ice and solid ingredients after the cocktail is shaken. We used the A Bar Above Hawthorne Strainer.

Paring Knife: This is used to cut ingredients. We used the OXO Good Grips 3.5 Inch Paring Knife.

Juicer: This is used to juice citrus. We used the ALEEHAI Manual Fruit Juicer.

Tasting Notes

The White Lady features citrus aromas and a gin-forward taste that is balanced by the sweet and sour citrus flavors and frothiness of the egg.

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: If a bartender ever asks if you’d like to try this cocktail, immediately answer, “Oui,” because it is so good. We thought it was simple yet feminine and elegant without the usual bright color many girlish drinks have. This is definitely a must-try if you’ve never had it! Someday we hope to be sipping a White Lady beneath the Eiffel Tower.

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Recipe

This cocktail recipe was adapted from The Art of Vintage Cocktails by Stephanie Rosenbaum.

The Art of Vintage Cocktails
The Art of Vintage Cocktails
Hardcover Book; Rosenbaum, Stephanie (Author); English (Publication Language); 108 Pages – 01/07/2014 (Publication Date) – Egg & Dart (Publisher)
$39.00

AuthorThe Art of Vintage Cocktails

Yields1 ServingPrep Time5 mins

Ingredients
 2 oz Gin
 ¾ oz Triple Sec
 ¾ oz Lemon Juice
 ½ oz Egg White

Method
1

Add gin, triple sec, lemon juice, egg white, and cubed ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Remove ice from shaker.

4

Dry shake for 5-10 more seconds to emulsify egg.

5

Strain into a cocktail glass.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 2 oz Gin
 ¾ oz Triple Sec
 ¾ oz Lemon Juice
 ½ oz Egg White

Directions

Method
1

Add gin, triple sec, lemon juice, egg white, and cubed ice to a shaker.

2

Shake for 10-20 seconds.

3

Remove ice from shaker.

4

Dry shake for 5-10 more seconds to emulsify egg.

5

Strain into a cocktail glass.

White Lady

Make It a Mocktail: Use MONDAY Zero Alcohol Gin in place of the gin and Lyre’s Orange Sec Non-Alcoholic Spirit in place of the orange liqueur to try a booze-free version of this drink.

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More Gin Cocktails

If you like this gin-based cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

Gin Rickey Cocktail Recipe

Gin Rickey: A classic gin cocktail made with lime juice, club soda, and a lime wheel

Trellis Gin & Tonic Cocktail Recipe

Trellis Gin & Tonic: An ombré gin cocktail made with cucumber and rose pink tonic water, lime juice, and a rolled cucumber

Florodora-Cocktail-Recipe-Web-Story-Cover

Florodora: A gin cocktail made with lime juice, raspberry syrup, simple syrup, ginger ale, a lime slice, and raspberries

Lemon Thyme Gin & Tonic Cocktail Recipe

Lemon Thyme Gin & Tonic: A lemon gin cocktail made with lemon juice, thyme syrup, Indian tonic water, and a lemon wedge

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