The South Side is an interesting cocktail. It’s simple and refreshing. Comprising gin, lime juice, simple syrup, and fresh mint, some describe it as a Gimlet with mint, and others call it a gin-based Mint Julep.

The recipe goes back to the early 1900s, and the name comes from either the Southside district of Chicago, Illinois or the Southside Sportsmen’s Club on Long Beach. The South Side was also a preferred drink of Al Capone, whose gang dominated Chicago’s south side.

In 1916, the recipe appeared in Huge Enslinn’s book – “Recipes for Mixed Drinks.” The cocktail from that book was named South Side Fizz, and it called for gin, lemon and lime juice, sugar, mint, and club soda.

If you go to different bars and check the menus for this cocktail, you’d find that some make it with lime juice (like us) and others with lemon juice. It works either way or even with both lime and lemon, like in Enslinn’s book. Up to you which one will you use. 🙂

Ingredients for South Side:

  1. 2 Ounces (60 ml) of gin.
  2. 1 Ounce (30 ml) freshly squeezed lime juice.
  3. 1 Ounce (30 ml) of simple syrup.
  4. Fresh mint leaves.


  1. Gently muddle mint leaves and lime juice into a shaker.
  2. Add the gin, simple syrup, and ice and shake until well chilled.
  3. Double strain into a chilled cocktail glass and garnish with a mint sprig.
  4. Enjoy.

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