Bee Knees Cocktail with Iron Buddha Gin

Bee Knees

What you’ll need

  • 2 oz Iron Buddha Gin
  • 0.5 oz lemon
  • 0.75 oz honey syrup
  • 1 lemon wheel
Bee Knees cocktail with candied lemon garnish

There is such a thing as good gin and bad gin.

History of the Bee Knees cocktail

Way back when in 1921, barmen came up with the Bee Knees cocktail recipe as a way to mask particularly bad gin so they could sell their stock. 

It’s not uncommon for people then and now to add mixers to spirits to make them taste better, but that’s not the only reason for making a cocktail. You’ve probably never thought of it as a way of using spirits to enhance the mixers, have you?

Think about it. There are a few flavours that are universally beloved by most – honey-lemon is one of them. You can add lemon and honey to anything and it would make it instantly better. You probably already do it with your tea. I do it with my salad dressings, and I know it’s a winner with grilled chicken too.

I also think it can work with gin. 

When you add a 43% distilled gin infused with floral botanicals to a classic Bee Knees cocktail, the combination of honey and lemon shines through even brighter.

I would like to add that its possible to get different variations of the same cocktail by using different kinds of honey or different kinds of lemon.

Now my recipe doesn’t talk about using honey per se, because what I think stands out more is using honey syrup.

I prefer honey syrup over honey for a few reasons:

    1. It adds dilution to the drink because of the water in honey syrup, making your cocktail lighter and more balanced.
    2. Mixing honey syrup is easier than mixing sticky honey.
    3. You get better consistency. It’s easier to pour 1 oz of honey syrup from your jigger, rather than 1 oz of honey. With honey, you might not be able to get the exact quantity, leading to less consistency in the cocktails you make.

So what is honey syrup?

Honey SyrupHoney syrup is basically honey and water.

To make 1 oz of honey syrup, you’ll use roughly 13 gms of room temperature water and roughly 21 gms of room temperature honey.

1 oz honey syrup = 13 gms of water + 21 gms of honey

Save this equation – it’s what will make all the difference between a good cocktail and a delicious-can’t-put-it-down-cocktail.

Keep in mind that my recipe below calls for 0.75 oz of honey syrup. You’ll need to do your own math to get 0.75 oz using the equation above, or simply pour out 0.25 oz of honey syrup. 

Once all the math is done, the actual making of the honey syrup isn’t difficult. You don’t even have to boil the mixture. You can also make a larger batch of honey syrup as it keeps fairly well for a week or two.

The rest of the Bee Knees cocktail recipe is actually quite simple and quick to make and repeat. You’ll be slinging refreshing drink after drink through the summer because this cocktail recipe is an actual testament to the fact that anything with lemon and honey tastes better.

Get your Hands on Our Spirits

Recipe Instructions

Step 1

Make an oz of honey syrup by stirring 13 grams of room temperature water with 21 grams of room temperature honey.

Step 2

Pour 0.75 oz of honey syrup, gin and lemon juice into a shaker.

Step 3

Add ice cubes and shake.

Step 4

Double strain into a coupe to serve with no ice.

Step 5

Add a lemon wheel as garnish. Enjoy this refreshing summer drink.

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