Clean, crisp, and simple—this is a great cocktail for the carb and calorie obsessed.
Although I may or may not have eaten a donut for breakfast from La Estrella, you still might be on the straight and narrow righteous diet path—following through on those New Year's resolutions. If you are, congrats, but even if you're not, it can't hurt to cut a few calories in your boozing regimen.
When it comes to drinking, health definitely isn't a prominent concern for most people, despite the fact that the cocktail itself was invented to be medicinal. However, if rich craft beer and decadent cocktails are starting to load you down, consider the gin rickey: a mix of gin, lime juice, and soda water.
In one gin rickey, there are 115 calories, about 1 carbohydrate, and a negligible amount of sugar and sodium. Since it has lime juice, it even has a bit of vitamin C. Plus, compared to light beer, which has about 100 calories but 5 times the carbs, and red wine, which has both more calories and carbs, gin rickeys make a lot of sense.
More importantly, compared to the terrible taste of light beer, the gin rickey is the obvious choice. Lightly tart and very clean, it's good for both summer and winter. You can keep your rickey interesting by switching up the gin you choose, adding new flavors each time.
If you haven't learned by now that gin does not have to taste like a bunch of pine cones (though some people dig juniper-forward gin), try the gin from Farmers, Hendrick's, Juniper Green, or anything from St. George's line-up. Arizona Distilling Co.'s Desert Dry gin also has a killer (and award-winning) botanical blend including cardamom, coriander, lavender, and citrus that is so drinkable it can be enjoyed neat—something even I as a crazy gin lady hesitate to do.
Any bartender in town should be able to pour an ounce and a half of your gin of choice and juice half of a lime over ice and then top it off with soda water, so the drink is appropriate to call out even at a dive bar. You can also easily make this one at home once you've bought a bottle of your favorite gin.
However, if your resolution was to give up drinking, please disregard this post and, um, good luck with that.