purple empress cocktail in champagne glass

Empress Gin Cocktails: Embrace the Elegance

Empress Gin cocktails are a celebration of creativity and elegance in the world of mixology. This distinctive spirit, known for its mesmerizing indigo hue that transforms into shades of pink or purple, has captured the hearts of cocktail enthusiasts and bartenders alike. In this article, we will explore a range of Empress Gin cocktails that showcase its unique color-changing properties and exquisite flavor profile.

Empress Gin: What You Should Know

Empress Gin is a unique and captivating spirit known for its vibrant color and distinct flavor profile. What sets it apart from other gins is its stunning indigo hue, which is naturally derived from a key botanical ingredient: butterfly pea flowers. This beautiful blue color is not only visually striking but also transforms into a delightful shade of pink or purple when mixed with citrus or tonic water, making it a mesmerizing addition to cocktails.

Empress Gin shines as a versatile ingredient, adding a touch of elegance and creativity to various mixed drinks. Its color-changing properties make it a favorite in cocktails where presentation matters.

What Is Empress Gin’s Flavor Profile?

Empress Gin offers a distinctive flavor profile that sets it apart from traditional gins. Its unique botanical blend, highlighted by the infusion of butterfly pea flowers, results in a complex and refreshing taste. Here’s a breakdown of the key flavor elements:

  • Juniper: Like all gins, juniper is a dominant botanical in Empress Gin, providing a piney and slightly resinous note that forms the backbone of its flavor.
  • Citrus: Empress Gin incorporates citrus peel, which adds bright and zesty notes to the overall taste profile. This citrusy element contributes to the gin’s refreshing and crisp character.
  • Floral: The butterfly pea flowers bring a subtle floral dimension to the gin. While not overwhelming, this floral note adds an elegant and aromatic quality to the spirit.

As well as the standard Empress 1908 Indigo Gin, there is a delightful new addition to the range – Empress 1908 Elderflower Rose Gin, which gets its unique color from a combination of vibrant red rose petals and black carrot. Overall, this flavor profile makes it perfect for crafting delicious sweet cocktails.

What Is the Alcohol Content of Empress Gin?

Empress Gin typically has an alcohol by volume (ABV) of 42.5%, which is equivalent to 85 proof. This standard ABV is in line with many other premium gin brands and provides a balanced and flavorful spirit that can be enjoyed in a wide range of cocktails.

What Goes Well With Empress Gin?

Empress Gin’s unique flavor profile and stunning color make it a versatile spirit that pairs exceptionally well with a variety of ingredients, both non-alcoholic mixers and other alcoholic beverages, as well as garnishes. Here are some suggestions for what goes well with Empress Gin:

  • Tonic Water: A classic pairing. Empress Gin and tonic water create a visually captivating and refreshing drink. The gin’s color-changing properties make for an eye-catching and dynamic cocktail when mixed with tonic. Garnish with a lemon twist or a slice of cucumber to enhance the flavor.
  • Citrus: The bright and zesty notes of Empress Gin make it an ideal companion for citrus fruits like lemon, lime, and grapefruit. Freshly squeezed citrus juice or citrus wedges can add a burst of flavor and acidity to your cocktails, and if you want to get really creative, you can mix it into a limoncello cocktail.
  • Elderflower Liqueur: Empress Gin pairs beautifully with elderflower liqueur, such as St-Germain. The floral and slightly sweet notes of elderflower complement the gin’s botanical complexity, creating a well-balanced and aromatic cocktail.
  • Herbal Elements: Experiment with fresh herbs like basil, mint, or thyme to infuse herbal notes into your Empress Gin cocktails. These herbs can add layers of aroma and flavor that harmonize with the gin’s botanicals.
  • Bitters: A dash of aromatic or citrus bitters can enhance the complexity of Empress Gin cocktails. Angostura or orange bitters, for example, can add depth and balance to your drinks.
  • Soda Water: For a lighter and more effervescent option, consider using soda water or sparkling mineral water. It’s an excellent choice if you want to showcase the gin’s unique color-changing abilities without the sweetness of tonic.
  • Fruit Juices: Experiment with fruit juices like pomegranate, cranberry, or raspberry to create fruit-forward cocktails that complement the gin’s floral and botanical notes.
  • Lavender Syrup: Lavender syrup adds a delicate floral sweetness that pairs harmoniously with Empress Gin. It’s an excellent addition to cocktails for those who enjoy a touch of floral elegance.
  • Garnishes: Elevate your Empress Gin cocktails with visually appealing garnishes like edible flowers, cucumber slices, lemon twists, or even a sprig of rosemary. These garnishes not only enhance the presentation but also add aromatic complexity.
  • Other Spirits: Empress Gin can be used in combination with other spirits like vodka, rum, or even champagne to create more intricate and layered cocktails. For example, an Empress Gin martini or an Empress Royale (Empress Gin and champagne) are delightful options to explore.

The Best Empress Gin Cocktails

Here are a few of our favorite Empress Gin cocktails to tantalize your tastebuds.

1. Empress Gin and Blueberry Mojito


  • 2 oz Empress Gin
  • 1 oz fresh lemon juice
  • ½ oz simple syrup
  • 8 to twelve blueberries
  • 5 mint leaves
  • Soda water to top up


Muddle blueberries and mint in a glass to release all the flavors. Add Empress Gin, lemon juice, and simple syrup and stir. Top up the glass with soda water.

Garnish: Mint leaves, blueberries.

Substitutions: Use any berries you like; cranberries can be used for a festive twist. Swap the lemon juice for orange or grapefruit juice and choose from sparkling water, seltzer water, or club soda.

2. Bees Knees


  • 2 oz Empress Gin
  • ½ oz honey syrup
  • 1 oz fresh lemon juice
  • ½ cup frozen berries


Microwave the berries for 15 seconds and then add to a cocktail shaker with the Empress gin, honey, lemon juice, and ice. Shake well for 30 seconds and strain into a glass.

Garnish: Frozen berries, lemon slices, edible flowers.

Substitutions: Add sage or lavender for a different twist.

3. Blood Orange Gin Fizz


  • 2 oz Empress Gin
  • 2 oz blood orange juice
  • ½ oz honey syrup
  • ½ oz Aperol


Add all ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake well for 30 seconds—strain into a glass.

Garnish: Orange slices, Grapefruit slices, mint leaves.

Substitutions: Swap out the Aperol for Campari. Add elderflower liquor for a different flavor. Swap out part of the blood orange juice for regular orange juice or clementine juice.

4. Empress Gin Martini


  • 3 oz Empress Gin
  • 1 oz vermouth
  • A few dashes of orange bitters


Chill your martini glass before adding the Empress gin, vermouth, and bitters.

Garnish: Grapefruit slice, blackberries, lemon slice, cranberries, candied orange.

Substitutions: Cranberry bitters can be used instead of orange bitters. Add a small amount of lemon or pineapple juice.

How to Serve an Empress Gin Cocktail

Serving an Empress Gin cocktail involves a few key steps:

  • Chill Your Glassware: Start by chilling the glass you plan to use for your Empress Gin cocktail. You can place it in the freezer for a few minutes or fill it with ice and water to chill while you prepare the cocktail.
  • Measure the Gin: Use a jigger or measuring tool to pour the desired amount of Empress Gin into your glass. The quantity can vary depending on the cocktail you’re making, but a standard measure for a classic Empress and Tonic is typically 2 ounces (60 ml) of gin.
  • Add Ice: If you prefer your cocktail on the rocks, add a few ice cubes to the glass. The cold temperature and dilution from the ice can help mellow the flavors and create a refreshing drink.
  • Pour Mixers: If you’re making a classic Empress and Tonic, top up your glass with tonic water. You can adjust the ratio of gin to tonic according to your taste preferences. Alternatively, you can experiment with other mixers or ingredients based on your chosen cocktail recipe.
  • Stir or Shake: Depending on your cocktail recipe, you may need to gently stir the ingredients in the glass or shake them in a cocktail shaker with ice. This step ensures that the flavors are well-mixed and the drink is properly chilled.
  • Garnish: Enhance the visual appeal and aroma of your Empress Gin cocktail by garnishing it with a slice of lime, lemon, or other citrus fruits. The acidity from the citrus can complement the gin’s botanicals and add a refreshing twist.
  • Serve: Your Empress Gin cocktail is now ready to be enjoyed. Present it to your guests in the chilled glass, allowing them to witness the mesmerizing color transformation as they sip.

Keep it Elegant with Empress Gin Cocktails

overhead shot of gin and tonic with cucumber

Whether you’re savoring Empress Gin cocktails in a classy bar or mixing them up at home, the experience is always one of elegance and delight. With its balanced botanicals, floral undertones, and the magic of its vibrant transformation, Empress Gin continues to leave a lasting impression on cocktail enthusiasts around the world.

So, the next time you seek a drink that tantalizes both the taste buds and the eyes, reach for Empress Gin and set off on a journey through the captivating world of color and flavor that it has to offer. Cheers to the artistry of mixology and the unforgettable Empress Gin!

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