The Gin and Coke is an easy cocktail where the botanical notes and bright citrus shine! It’s perhaps even better than the original.

Gin and coke

Looking for an easy gin cocktail that tastes better than the sum of its parts? Try the Gin and Coke! Sure, the Gin and Tonic is probably the first easy gin drink that jumps to mind. But mixing this botanical liquor with cola is a very good idea. Use the right ratio and the delicate flavor of gin shines through without getting overpowered by the sweet cola. Add a zing of lime and it tastes totally novel. Move over, rum and coke. Gin’s got the spotlight!

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Why to make a gin and coke

The Gin and Coke is a variation on the the Rum and Coke, the popular drink that you’ve probably had too many of in your life. The Rum and Coke itself is a variation on the Cuba Libre, a highball cocktail of rum, cola and lime that was invented Cuba in the early 1900’s. It quickly spread to America, where people started to mix cola with all sorts of spirits.

The exact history of mixing Gin and Coke is uncertain. Some people call the drink the Cubata, or say it’s the Spanish version of Rum and Coke since the preferred spirit in Spain is gin. Whatever the case, the Gin and Coke is an incredible mix of botanical, zingy, sweet and bubbly flavor that’s even better than the original…we think. Here a few tips to making the best gin and coke.

Gin and coke

What’s the gin and coke ratio?

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Tip 1 to making the best Gin and Coke recipe: use the right ratio! Often restaurants mix up a version of this drink that’s too heavy on the coke. Use the right ratio to get just the right flavor combination. The Gin and coke ratio is:

  • 2 ounces gin to 4 ounces cola =
  • 1 part gin to 2 parts cola

Of course, you can play around to find your favorite quantities. Some people complain that cola totally overwhelms the delicate flavors of gin, but they peak out beautifully in this ratio. If you prefer more gin, you can try the ratio 2 ounces gin to 3 ounces cola.

Add lime…a wedge or measured juice

Our best tip for making a mixed drink with coke? (We’ve got lots of them.) Add citrus! The acidity of a lemon or a lime cuts through the sweetness of the cola and makes the drink much more interesting. You can add the lime to this gin and coke in two ways:

  • Squeeze in a lime wedge: Before you garnish with a lime wedge, squeeze it into the drink. This will add about 1 teaspoon lime juice.
  • Add ½ ounce (1 tablespoon) lime juice. Want a more pronounced citrus flavor? (Who doesn’t want more lime!) Measure out fresh lime juice and add it for an even tastier drink.
Gin and coke

Best gin for a Gin and Coke

You can use any type of gin for a gin and coke. Here’s one thing to note: the cola is strong enough to cover sub-par alcohol. But this doesn’t mean you should use bad gin! Yes, you should save your top shelf gin for a Gin and Tonic. But this drink shines with good gin.

We’d go for a mid-priced gin: price typically correlates with quality when it comes to alcohol. A brand we like is Malfy gin: we prefer it over something more floral like Tanqueray. We also like using locally distilled gin from 8th Day Distillery or Hotel Tango in Indianapolis: find a local distiller if you can find one!

Variation: add Angostura bitters

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How to make a super sophisticated Gin and Coke? Add a few dashes of Angostura bitters! All you need are a few drops to make the flavor extraordinarily complex. That’s because bitters are made with dozens of herbs and spices: it adds intrigue because the flavors are not easily recognizable.

Angostura bitters are easy to find at your local liquor store, and you can use them for lots of cocktails! Try them in a Classic Old Fashioned, Manhattan, or Sazerac (or lots more).

Gin and coke

Gin and Coke variations

There are so many ways to mix up drinks with coke! After you’ve made the Gin and Coke, well: you’ll probably want to try them all! You can use the same ratio as above, unless otherwise noted. These are great ideas for tasty but cheap drinks! Here are some ideas of alcohol that mixes well with cola:

  • Rum for Rum and Coke
  • Jack Daniels for Jack and coke
  • Any whiskey or bourbon for Whiskey and coke
  • Red wine for a Kalimotxo (use equal parts wine and coke)
  • Vodka for Vodka and coke
  • Tequila for Tequila and coke
  • Crown Royal for Crown and coke
  • Hennessy for Hennessy and coke (use 1.5 ounces Hennessy to 4 ounces coke)


More great gin cocktails

Gin and Coke is one of the easiest gin cocktails there is! Here are a few more that are worth making:

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  • Go classy and classic with Gin Fizz, Ramos Gin Fizz, Gin Gimlet or Tom Collins
  • Opt for a bubbly French 75 or Gin Rickey
  • Mix up a simple fruity Salty Dog
  • Lean towards dry drinks with a Classic Negroni or Classic Martini
  • Try the modern classic Gin Gin Mule
  • Make a Bloody Mary with gin…the Red Snapper!


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