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Murielle Banackissa

Rose Gin Tonic

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5 mins Prep: 5 mins
Serves 1

Fizzy, floral, and refreshing, this gin tonic features Empress 1908 Gin, lichee syrup, and rosewater.


Rose Rim

  • 1 tsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp crushed dried rose petals
  • Lemon wedge

Rose Gin Tonic

  • Ice
  • 1 oz Empress 1908 Gin
  • ½ oz lichee syrup
  • ½ tsp rosewater
  • Tonic water (I love Fentiman's Valencian Orange Tonic Water)


  1. Step 1

    In a small plate, mix together the granulated sugar and crushed dried rose petals.

  2. Step 2

    Brush some lemon onto a section of a coupe glass. Dip your glass into the sugar and rose mixture.

  3. Step 3

    In a shaker (or a mason jar), add the ice along with the gin, lichee syrup, and rosewater. Cover and shake for 20 seconds.

  4. Step 4

    Pour into your coupe glass, top with tonic water and a squeeze of lemon.

  5. Step 5

    Garnish with a dried flower and enjoy!

Common Questions & Swaps

  • No dried rose petals? Simply create a sugar rim on your coupe; skip the roses. 
  • Can I replace the lichee syrup with another syrup? Yes, you can. I would suggest to stick with more floral flavours, like elderflower syrup. If you don't have any of those on hand and don't want to purchase them, a simple syrup will do the trick, but don't skip on the rosewater.
  • Can I replace the rosewater? You could, but then it wouldn't be a rose gin tonic would it?
Rose Gin Tonic in a garden surrounded by flowers
Bottle of Empress Gin 1908
Coupe of rose gin tonic in a garden set on a mirror with bottle of Empress Gin 1908 in the background

Recipe created in the context of an Instagram partnership with Empress 1908 Gin.


To me, there is something so magical about shooting in nature. When Empress 1908 Gin offered me to create a festive cocktail to celebrate the arrival of spring, I was immediately inspired.

It was actually the starting point of elaborating this recipe.

How could I channel the essence of nature and botanicals into a cocktail?

I immediately thought: flowers. This year I have been more intentional about taking walks outside and noticing how the nature around me changes. And what have I noticed more than before? Flowers. How new ones come out every few weeks, following the flow of spring into late summer. How flowers are the most elegant beds for raindrops to rest on. How they attract bees and butterflies, creating elaborate living ecosystems.

And so through this cocktail, I wanted to celebrate nature. Its elegance, its beauty, its gentleness, and also its resilience (anyone who has seen how sunflowers move with the sun knows that).

This cocktail is fun, colourful, very floral, a little fizzy, and full of nuances. I really hope you like it!

Close up of flower floating in a rose gin tonic.
Rose gin tonic in the afternoon light.

When it comes to the ingredients used in this recipe, below are the ones I used.

For any modifications, refer to the Common Questions & Swaps section.

Granulated sugar: It is the base of the sugar rim that gives this cocktail a little extra elegance.

Crushed dried rose petals: They add a touch of colour to the glass and are a little foreshadowing of flavours of this cocktail.

Lemon wedge: I use it simply to help the sugar rim stick.

Ice: It is what helps turn the gin cold.

Empress 1908 Gin: With its botanical notes and stunning colour, this Canadian gin really brings life to this fizzy cocktail.

Lichee syrup: I use one from a local brand called Mr. Cocktail. I love its sweetness and light floral aroma.

Rosewater: I love baking with rosewater, but it was my first time using it in a cocktail. I find that it really brings out the floral notes of the gin and makes this drink extra summery.

Tonic water: I used it to give this cocktail its traditional gin tonic fizz.

Creating this cocktail was like going on a stroll in a garden and letting myself be inspired by what I saw. Even shooting it was an experience. I did it in my in-laws’ backyard, surrounded by leaves dancing to the rhythm of the wind, birds singing, and the sun setting.

I hope that if you make this cocktail, you also take the time to notice and reflect on the natural beauty that surrounds you.

If you make this recipe, I’d appreciate it if you left a review above in the recipe box and shared about it on social media. Don’t forget to tag me (@muriellebanackissa).

Happy cooking and cheers to celebrating the magic of nature ✦