Whatever happened to …

… lemon gin?

Here’s a new concept. The idea that Ramona Meharg fed me last week serves as inspiration today. Last week, we looked at the LCBO. That got me thinking and then a story came across my timeline (see it below) and it was like an order to do this.

When I was in Grade 13, the drinking age in Ontario had been dropped to eighteen (teachers, let that sink in a bit). So, basically, it meant that everyone in my class was of drinking age.

That opened up an additional option for us for lunch; going out to a local bar. It’s not that we always went there for a drink, it’s just that they had a better and cheaper lunch menu than other places.

For weekends, we would often gather at a friend’s house for a little party and we could legally bring some refreshments. For the guys, it was typically a case of Labatt’s Blue. For the girls, it was one of a pair of flavoured hard drinks – cherry brandy or lemon gin. Since lemon gin could be purchased in a mickey for an affordable price, it was a popular option. I never was fond of either – cherry brandy left me feeling like I needed to brush my teeth and lemon gin always reminded me of flavoured turpentine. Why, I don’t know. I’ve never taken a drink of turpentine.

The lemon gin was mixed with tonic water which I found made both slightly more drinkable.

All this got me thinking about LCBO options these days. I can only remember two flavoured drinks from my youth; today, those options seem to have the major selection on the shelves. There seem to be flavoured vodka and other coolers. I guess they’re perfect for the hot weather that we’ve been having.

From my high school years, I only remember one flavoured lemon gin. It was made by Gilbey’s. Now, they’re not the only game in town.

12 Lemon Gins That Will Add a Delicious Tang to Your Summer G&T

And this appeared in my readings this morning…


For a Sunday, your thoughts …

  • what was the government thinking about lowering the drinking age so that students were “legal”?
  • what do you remember as the lowest drinking age from your school years?
  • would there have been more than cherry brandy and lemon gin available for sale at the time? Remember that we weren’t allowed to actually see the products but had to order by card
  • do you have a favourite flavoured summer refreshment?
  • do you have a gin recipe that you could share?

Thanks, Ramona, for the continuing inspiration. If you have an idea for a Sunday morning blog post, let me know. All of the past posts, including a link to a Padlet to leave suggestions, are available here.

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If you read it anywhere else, it’s not the original.

3 thoughts on “Whatever happened to …

  1. I have no idea what the drinking age was when I was in high school. Probably because I didn’t drink alcohol then (and still don’t) so never had to buy it. I do remember there being a lot of alcohol at parties I attended in high school. The way it was consumed then is probably why I still don’t drink it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: My Week Ending 2020-08-02 – doug — off the record

  3. Hi Doug. I have never been one for gin or those sweet “coolers” kinds of drinks, but thought I would share some “recipe” ideas. There is one gin drink that is a favourite of my husband’s and sometimes I will join him for one. He insists it has be a very hot, humid day or it is just not the same. He agreed with sharing his secret recipe with you:
    Lime Crush
    One lime, cut up; 5 fresh mint leaves; 3/4 oz of simple syrup (or 1 tbsp of powdered sugar); 1 1/2 oz. gin.
    Muddle lime, mint and syrup/sugar in bottom of cocktail shaker. Strain into glass filled with crushed ice; Add gin and stir well. Sit outside and enjoy! 🙂

    We also bought some Ocean Spray “pink cranberry” this summer. It has been nice alone or with some soda. We also came across a drink recipe like a margarita using cranberry juice that was good. I think you and your wife like Margaritas, so I will share this one as well:
    1 1/2 oz. tequila; 1 oz. cointreau: 1 oz. lime juice; 1 1/2 cranberry juice (I used the pink one)
    Shake all ingredients with ice. Double strain into a chilled glass. Add an orange twist/slice or a salt rim.
    You can play around with all those ingredients.. more juice, or add some orange bitters.

    Hope you are having a good Sunday!


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