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Pinch Hitter by Derek Brown

ginger lemonade Pinch Hitter: Spirit-Free Ginger Lemon Cocktail

Just two ingredients move this lemonade into cocktail territory.

“This is, truthfully, some version of lemonade,” says Derek Brown, author of Mindful Mixology: A Comprehensive Guide to No- and Low-Alcohol Cocktails. “But I added a few components to make it more complex and compelling.” Together, these components add balance and a spicy spark, as well as depth, complexity, and body, taking a basic lemonade into cocktail territory. Aquafaba is the liquid accompanying canned or cooked chickpeas, and functions as a foaming ingredient.


  • 2 oz. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 oz. ginger syrup
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 oz. aquafaba (or substitute fresh egg white)
  • 6 drops saline tincture (4 parts water to 1 part sea salt)
  • Tools:shaker, strainer
  • Glass:coupe
  • Garnish:lemon wheel


Shake all of the ingredients with ice until chilled and foamy, then strain into a chilled glass and garnish.

Ginger SyrupHeat 1 cup of white sugar and 1 cup of water in a saucepan until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and add 2 Tbsp. of grated ginger (with skin). Allow to cool. Add a squeeze of lemon juice and strain out the ginger. If you prefer a spicier ginger syrup, add a few dashes of freshly squeezed ginger juice before straining.

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