Singapore Sling

This is a nice, refreshing drink great for hot days and tropical climes, although it’s a bit removed from the original version as it was invented in 1915 at the Long Bar at the Raffles Hotel in Singapore by a bartender named Ngiam Tong Boon.

Here’s the current, most popular version of the drink. While it may not be the original version, as Chris McMillian quotes Dale DeGroff, “When a drink tastes this good, who cares if it’s the original one or not?”

The Singapore Sling
(Contemporary version)

1-1/2 ounces gin.
1/2 ounce Cherry Heering.
1/2 ounce Bénédictine.
1/4 ounce Cointreau.
1/2 ounce fresh lime juice.
2 ounces pineapple juice.
1 dash Angostura bitters.
2 dashes grenadine.
Club soda.

Combine with ice and shake well. Strain into a tall wine glass or Collins glass over ice, and top with club soda. Garnish with an orange-cherry flag.

Research by Dr. Cocktail, among others, suggests that the original version of the drink was much drier, made with a dry cherry brandy like kirschwasser rather than the sweet Cherry Heering. This alleged original is good too, and very much worth a try. Doc has renamed it the “Straits” Sling.

Straits Sling

2 dashes of Orange Bitters.
2 dashes of Angostura Bitters.
The juice of half a lemon.
1/8 gill (1/2 ounce) of Bénédictine.
1/8 gill (1/2 ounce) of Dry Cherry Brandy.
1/2 gill (2 ounces) of Gin.

Shake with ice, pour into a tumbler and fill up with cold soda water.

I know the weather’s turning cold, but if you happen to have an unseasonably balmy day (we’ve had plenty up until just this week), sling away.

Here’s New Orleans master bartender Chris McMillian making one for us: