[:en]How many of the world's most beloved and iconic recipes were born from an accident? The most famous of all? Panettone, which seems to be the result of a lucky leavening error that made it one of the most famous desserts in the world and the most consumed during the Christmas holidays and beyond.
Now, we are not talking about Panettone in this case but about Pink Gin, a cocktail which, according to legend, was also born due to an accident that did not concern the drink itself but its future consumers: sailors and officers on the brink of a crisis of… seasickness!
But let's go in order.
As absurd as it may seem, the use of consuming alcohol (in moderate doses) against seasickness dates back to at least 1800, when Lauchland Rose figured out how to preserve lime juice with sugar and the iconic Rose's Lime Juice drink was born, which was patented and used on board British Navy ships. The officers used to buy gin in port and mix it with the daily rations of lime that were given to them to combat seasickness.
Although the name may be misleading, Rose's Lime Juice was not and still is not a pink-colored drink.
We had to wait until 1820 for Pink Gin to come to light as a "tonic" for seasickness and pave the way for its recreational use, so to speak, like other drinks and spirits. The German doctor Johann Gottlieb Benjamin Siegert, during a stay in Venezuela, created a powerful remedy against seasickness which he gave the name of Pink Gin. Having settled in the city of Angostura to study a remedy for the ailments of soldiers affected by fever and intestinal problems, Siegert arrived after four years of research at the creation of a bitter, obtained from the infusion of around 12 secret aromatic herbs (still known today), excellent for treating intestinal problems of soldiers. Adding Angostura to Gin created a perfect mix to treat the symptoms of seasickness, and on the trade routes between Europe and the Americas, Pink Gin became the most consumed cocktail in ports and on merchant and military ships. .
The original recipe did not include it, since adding it to cocktails is actually a rather recent use, but if you like ice it is allowed. Here's how to prepare a perfect Pink Gin:
30ml of Gin
4 drops of Angostura
It is prepared directly in the glass.
Pour the drops of Angostura into the glass and wine it (let the bitter run over the entire wall of the glass slowly)
At that point, pour in the gin (with ice to taste) and garnish with lemon zest.
Mix and enjoy slowly.