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Many classic cocktails, like a Tom Collins, require a Sour Mix component. I’ve posted recipes for sour mix before, like this Homemade Sour Mix. Thing is that recipe calls for a quart of lemon juice, which can make your hand tired. And, and, what are you going to do with a quart of sour mix? It’s fine a party, but for just a couple of people this can be a waste.

Then too, with my intense sweet tooth condition, I find many sour mixes are just too sour. Here’s a not-too-sour sour mix that gives you about ⅔ cup in volume. Enough for a couple of tall cocktails.

I’ll post a great Tom Collins recipe on Friday. For now, here’s the recipe for a balanced sour mix.

Balanced Sour Mix

Yield: about cup


  • 1 large lemon
  • ½ cup of water
  • ⅓ cup of simple syrup [more or less to taste


Cut off the ends of the lemon. Remove any label, then cut the lemon in quarters by slicing down from the top.

Put the lemon slices in a blender and add ½ cup water. Turn the blender on and process for a least a minute. Pour the mixture through a sieve, pressing to extract the maximum amount of liquid. You should end up with ⅓ to ½ cup.

Add the simple syrup to the mix. You might want to have equal volumes of simple syrup and your lemon extract. You might want more. You have to taste test to see the amount pucker you want. Remember, this sour mix is going to be mixed with some other elements, like gin and soda in that Tom Collins.

Source: Brian O’Rourke

Photo Information: Canon T2i, EFS 60mm Macro Lens, F/4 for 1/50th second at ISO‑500