Meet Tom Collins

Member of a Family

Favorite Restaurant Drink Recipe

Tom Collins, one of the things my mother and mother-in-law had in common was their appreciation for ...Collins Drink.

It was always one of their favorite drink recipes when we were having a family get together.

This cocktail was a widely popular socializing beverage. Sip and enjoy the taste and the conversation.

It is a favorite restaurant drink recipe.

Tom is part of another family, as well. Tom is a gin based beverage so his closest relative is the Vodka Collins, but there is also a Brandy Collins, a John Collins (bourbon), Mike Collins (Irish whiskey), Jack (Applejack), Pedro (rum), and Sandy or Jock Collins (Scotch).

No one is certain where Tom was born although it is believed he was created in the late 19th century. Australia and England both say they were Tom's birthplace. America, particularly the city of San Francisco, claims Tom started there. I don't believe we'll ever know for sure. Sorry, Tom.

Tom was so popular in America at one point, a glass was named after him; the Collins glass, tall and narrow. He should be served in his namesake or a similar glass.

As mentioned, Tom is a gin-based cocktail with lemon or lime juice, soda water, and sugar. As with many restaurant drink recipes, there are some regional differences. This is the most popular with West Coast (USA) restaurant guests...and my husband who just made one! ;-)

Tom Collins Recipe

Favorite Restaurant Drink Recipe

Preparation time: 1-2 minutes. Serves 1.



  • 2 ounces gin (dry is preferred)
  • 1 ounce lemon juice (best if fresh squeezed)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 3 ounces club soda
  • Ice
  • Lemon slice or twist (East Coast orange slice and sometimes a Maraschino cherry)



  • Mix gin, lemon juice and sugar with ice in a shaker (shake well)
  • Garnish with lemon slice or twist and/or orange slice and/or Maraschino cherry
  • Strain into a Collins glass nearly filled with ice
  • Add club soda
  • Garnish with a lemon slice and serve

Enjoy your Collins recipe and the company of those you share it with! It is a real restaurant drink recipe. - Donna