New Year’s Eve: The Sherbet Lemon

Hope everyone had a fantastic (and food-filled) Christmas! I could have posted a Christmas leftovers recipe but obviously everyone will have had different things leftover (last year I remember making a decadent mac and cheese to use up the dog-ends of the festive cheeseboard. It was glorious and sinful.)

Today is New Year’s Eve and I bet many of you are preparing for a night on the tiles, or just having a couple of friends over.

I am very partial to a cocktail. We have a stacked cabinet at home, and although my preferred mixed drinks are the old-school classics (Old Fashioneds, Negronis, Brazen Hussies, Whiskey Sours etc) sometimes I get inventive and have a go at my own – I have one I called the Montreal which will appear once I get some more maple syrup.

This one arose from a chat with a Twitter follower (@jakeychampion #Shoutout) describing something he’d been served on a night out – Absolut Citron, Cointreau, sweet and sour mix and sugar syrup, and tasting like lemon sherbet. I didn’t have Absolut Citron but I did have Limoncello (lemon liqueur from the Amalfi coast)…, along with simple/gomme syrup, triple sec (essentially Cointreau) and a rather sorry-for-itself-looking lemon in the fruit bowl so I got to work as one does.

I’ve listed the recipe in ratios rather than measurements so should you wish, you can make a pitcher if you’re throwing a party. Also feel free to garnish with a lemon twist if you’re a bit less clumsy with a knife than me.

The resultant drink was christened the Sherbet Lemon – sweet, tangy and tastes just like the old-fashioned boiled sweet it was named after. Not quite as vivid in hue – it’s a muted pale yellow yet it is dangerously drinkable. ┬áCin-cin.

Sherbet Lemon


1.5 parts vodka

1 part limoncello (or any lemon liqueur)

0.5 parts triple sec

1 part gomme or simple syrup

Juice 1 fresh lemon (or to taste. If using plastic bottled stuff, I’d say 1 part but again it’s to taste)

  1. Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled 2/3rds with ice.
  2. Shake and strain into a (preferably chilled) martini glass. Knock back thinking of idyllic childhoods or the Amalfi coast overlooking endless lemon groves.